FIMC Explores Data Storage Solutions
In our introductory post on the happenings at Foam Injection Mold Company (FIMC), we described three major technology solutions that Superior Consulting Services implemented to help them modernize and streamline their operations. One of these tech solutions is a timekeeping application that interfaces with their payroll system that was migrated from Access to a newly-upgraded SQL Server. As the story goes, John and Dustin not-so-fondly remember Bella’s bi-weekly timecard travails. According to John, they ate T.V. dinners every night on timecard processing week because mom was up to her eyeballs in work – often working into the wee morning hours. These brothers know that a better work/life balance is imperative for both of them if they want to set themselves up for success running operations at FIMC. To this day, neither of the boys ever throw a T.V. dinner into their grocery carts.
John & Dustin’s Story
John graduated from a local university with a sales and marketing degree. Dustin, eager to fly the coop, traveled across the country and attended a prestigious school where he received a degree in business. With the handover of the business, the boys are working on defining their roles and fortunately – with their combination of education and experience – it’s been a more or less straightforward process thus far. The biggest challenge in terms of roles is Bill and Bella’s struggle relinquishing control of theirs!
Implementing a Data Warehouse Build
At the end of our previous post we told you that the boys reached out to us again, ready to implement more technology solutions at FIMC. When we met with them following that phone call we sat down and discussed the implementation of a data warehouse build. This was about a month ago and today we are in the early stages of that build. We are conducting meetings with each department – finance, sales and marketing, production and operations as well as with the executive team – and asking them some key questions: What type of data would you like to be able to capture? What do you currently have in place to report your data? What’s missing and what would you like to see? What historical information is important in order to view business trends? Once we finish gathering that information we can then start mapping out the best way to consolidate the different data sources. Typically, this process takes anywhere from 6-9 months.
Currently, FIMC is operating their expansive business while utilizing outdated SQL Server and Access databases for data storage, and fifteen-year-old Excel spreadsheets for reporting. John and Dustin are in search of new tools for their technology toolbox – tools that will allow them to not only compete in their market but tools that will give them a leg up on the competition. We believe that a new data warehouse is absolutely necessary at FIMC in order to achieve these goals. Once completed, John and Dustin will be able to consolidate all their data into a single system and run accurate and useful reports faster than ever before. This will give them a much better snapshot of business operations across all departments and help them create a comprehensive plan for growth.
Utilizing SharePoint for Storing HR Documents
The boys reached out to SCS again last week. In an attempt to have a place for HR documents and company forms, they are dabbling with SharePoint and consequently, hitting some roadblocks. Next week, SCS’s resident SharePoint expert will meet with John and Dustin to get them set up with this platform. Check back to hear how the SharePoint mentoring and the data warehouse build shake out!
Disclosure: Foam Injection Mold Company is a fictional organization created to allow SCS to more fully convey the details of business needs and technical environments related to actual solutions created by SCS without infringing upon the privacy of our clients. All SCS consultants, technical expertise, consulting services provided, and implemented solutions referred to in the Foam Injection Mold Company articles are real! Only the client names and lines of business have been changed to protect the innocent.