Ingenico Payment Services invests in Business Intelligence
lngenico Payment Services processes more than 200 million transactions every year. lts databases contain an enormous amount of information. “Until recently there wasn’t enough adequate reporting and analysis of this information,” explains Guillaume d’Ansembourg, Chief Process Officer. “We had the basic information about the transactions, but not with enough detail. Looking things up was very labour intensive, and more detailed reports could only be created by the lT department.”
lt wasn’t really a priority for lngenico to calculate the exact ROl from the Bl project beforehand; there was simply a great need for reporting. “We consulted with all our colleagues, and they all said the same thing: everyone wanted better reporting and analysis,” says Nicolas Sonnet, Business Analyst. “The project started with a series of internal interviews and workshops. We asked the users what they needed. That’s the best guarantee of achieving useful results.”
Strategic insights into a wealth of information
Having a better overview of the wealth of information in its databases results in a more efficient and strategic way of working. “We had a number of clear objectives in mind,” explains Guillaume d’Ansembourg. “We wanted a better understanding of our business information, to increase our clients’ sales, partly through targeted upselling. We also wanted to be able to forecast our monthly turnover better. We ultimately also opted for so-called information democracy: everyone can make their own reports, according to what they need.” lnternal employees from various departments are benefitting from this initially, but the reporting will ultimately be useful for lngenico’s clients too.
“People used to act on their feelings too often, but now they can use actual figures,” explains Guillaume d’Ansembourg. “We used to tell clients that their conversion rate was too low compared to others, but this wasn’t always easy to back up. Now we can check which payment method is performing well for different types of traders in various situations, how much confidence there is in certain payment methods in a particular country, or which infrastructure works best where. We then use this information to provide very targeted advice. We’ve got the perfect tools to do more upselling to our clients now, which is good for our profits and also for theirs. The higher the conversion rate on their payment page, the more revenue they create. And now we can help them with this.”
Guillaume d’Ansembourg, Chief Process Officer: “People used to act on their feelings too often, but now they can use actual figures.”
Self-service model for all employees
lngenico has ensured all its employees have access to the information without needing to rely on the lT department. “We switched to a self-service model, so pivot tables in Excel can be used to find out pretty much anything you want to know about the transactions,” continues Nicolas Sonnet. “A couple of months ago we also started monthly Business Performance Reviews, in which we can even create live reports. lf someone wants to find something out during a meeting, it only takes a moment to look it up. This is particularly useful for the sales managers, to get very targeted information and a very specific action plan from the meeting.”
Nicolas Sonnet, Business Analyst: “The Microsoft products are very accessible too; you can connect them to all sorts of other tools and software without any problems.”
Fruitful collaboration with Kohera
lngenico started collaborating with Bl specialist, Kohera, to ensure everything ran smoothly. Kohera worked together with lngenico’s Bl team to set up the data warehouse and detailed pivot tables in Microsoft Excel. “We implemented the so-called Analysis Services tabular models with in-memory technology to be able to search huge amounts of data. This new development makes it possible to process massive amounts of data faster than ever before,” explains Frederik Vandeputte, Managing Partner for Kohera.
The data warehouse is a filtered and enriched copy of the lngenico transaction databases. The latest data is added every night and processed further so that reports can be created quickly. No confidential information protected by privacy legislation or sensitive information enters into the data warehouse. Guillaume d’Ansembourg: “The reports are very detailed, but completely anonymous, so our employees cannot see any secure personal information or payment details.”
Kohera is a new provider for lngenico, but the collaboration has been excellent since the start. Guillaume d’Ansembourg: “The people from Kohera are very practical, pragmatic and flexible. We didn’t spend ages thinking about the structure and all the various definitions; we just got started with it when the time was right. Of course we encountered all sorts of obstacles along the way, but we finished the project in the space of just three months, which is fast for a Bl project. The atmosphere within the company was always great because everyone wanted better reporting. There really was a good dynamic and everything ran surprisingly smoothly. The team spirit was one reason why this project was such a success.”
Work efficiently with Microsoft products
Even though the lngenico’s umbrella organisation works with SAP, Microsoft tools were chosen for this Bl project. “lt was a logical extension of what we already had,” explains Nicolas Sonnet. “We did the analysis and spoke with various consultants, and Microsoft was clearly the best solution because we use Microsoft SQL Server for our transaction database and Microsoft SharePoint for our intranet. All this software is synchronised perfectly, and Microsoft products are very accessible too; you can connect them to all sorts of other tools and software without any problems.”
Pivot table magic
Nicolas Sonnet: “Our average user now just opens Excel, makes a connection to the data, and a single pivot table is displayed. Most of our people already knew how these pivot tables work, so no extensive training was necessary. Product managers can now, for example, look up where a product is making profits, what’s happening with the sub-products, which types of trader are doing well in which countries, and which aren’t! They can then create their own report in a matter of moments, before emailing the Excel file as an attachment to a colleague to continue working on it. We’ll share everything via Microsoft SharePoint eventually.”
lngenico wants to expand the system further to its branches in Germany and France. Guillaume d’Ansembourg: “We’re thinking about implementing it there too so that we can compare with each other. We’ve got clients with payment terminals is stores abroad too, and we want to combine these offline and online transactions in the reporting.”
Ingenico Payment Services is part of Ingenico Group, a global provider of mobile, online and offline payment applications. Ingenico Payment Services uses the group’s many years of expertise to provide advice about payment options to clients.