A far more detailed insight into the business combined with a completely new set of options to control and target the marketing activities. This is the result of a Business Intelligence project (BI) where the Scandlines shipping company, assisted by NNIT, implemented QlikView as a central IT tool for the monitoring and optimization of the day-to-day operations of the shipping company.
The implementation of the BI system also paves the way for a future enhancement of the efficiency within a range of Scandlines’ business areas. Scandlines is a 24/7 business operating the ferry service between Rødby (DK)-Puttgarden (D) and Gedser (DK)-Rostock (D) all day and all year round. QlikView has helped the company get a complete overview of the development of the day-to-day shipping operations as well as the catering and retail shops on board the six ferriesand in the two BorderShops ashore. Vice President at Scandlines, Mikael Kragh, explains:
”QlikView has made a great difference to us by making us able to automate our reporting process. We are in direct touch with our sales figures, both in relation to the budget and to the previous years. At the same time, we have made a large number of resources available for more customer-oriented activities. It is a real success”.
The shipping company differs from most other businesses because the weekend is the busiest time of the week for them. Previously, the staff was working both Saturday and Sunday where they manually produced a flood of reports, for instance on the number of customers visiting the shops and the sales they were generating. This process is nowautomated. QlikView is combined with the NPrint tool to ensure that the management receives a complete report every day with visualizations of data describing the progress of the shipping and retail/catering businesses.The daily reporting means that Scandlines can be more proactive in its marketing approach:
”If we find that we have not reached our sales figures for a given period of time, the marketing department will have time to respond to this and launch a number of initiatives to attract more customers,” Mikael Kragh points out.
Scandlines has many IT applications, and QlikView is the shared reporting tool that collects and processes data from a number of these applications.
”QlikView can be integrated with our many underlying applications in a quick and seamless manner and is able to retract data from them. Today, we apply data from five-seven different applications in the BI system,” Mikael Kragh explains.
QlikView has proved its worth during the ongoing rollout of a new Point-of-Sales system (POS) where Scandlines introduces new checkout terminals on the ferries and in the two BorderShops. The rollout of the POS system is performed ferry by ferry and shop by shop.
”The project goes on for five months and the IT consultants from NNIT have a really good understanding of what we want to achieve. Even though we operate with two different checkout terminal systems at the same time, we get completely transparent reporting with QlikView. The management can view the analyses in the BI system as if the data was supplied from the same system,” Mikael Kragh points out.
The BI system is used to analyze a wealth of data. This may be data on the passenger volumes, revenues, sales of chocolate, liquor or tobacco as well as the so-called basket sizes that specify the amount of money spent by the individualcustomers. In this way, the analyses provide detailed insight into the development of the different business areas on a daily basis. The BI system is also used to intensify the marketing efforts, Mikael Kragh says:
”We measure the effect of our campaigns and analyze the customer behavior. In the future, we will use QlikView to target our campaigns even further,” he says and elaborates: ”Different campaigns may have different effects depending on what time of the season it is. During the peak season, when we all go on summer vacation, one campaign type is working, and in the off-season, we get affected by other campaign types as individuals. In the future, we will analyze the effect of our campaigns year-round so that the sales and marketing departments can plan the future campaigns more accurately on the basis of the results”.
Analyses in connection with Scandlines’ loyalty program “SMILE” and the optimization of the activities in relation to the loyal customers is the most recent area within which Scandlines has applied QlikView.
”We monitor the SMILE customers and their behavior compared to customers who are not part of the loyalty program. Are their basket sizes for instance bigger than the ones of the other customers? How many points have they earned and how many points do they use to pay with again? We try to influence them to come more often and buy more,” Mikael Kragh says.
Mapping of customer behavior on the Internet is another future application potential of QlikView analyses: ”But we have not come to this yet and it will not be on the drawing board anytime soon,” Mikael Kragh points out.