Moving Forward Blog

Power BI for Manufacturing

  • 5 Dec, 2014
  • C Nelson

Project Summary:

Tail Wind partnered with a large Midwest manufacturer to architect and design an agile DW/BI system with the goal of gaining meaningful insights into sales, order, and inventory management.

Together we selected Microsoft SQL Server 2012, Integration Services (SSIS), Analysis Services (SSAS) and Power BI to turn the strategic vision into reality.

After a careful analysis of the critical workflows in their existing Oracle ERP system, SSIS was used to transfer key Oracle data sets to a new SQL Server 2012 operational data store (ODS).

In the ODS, key process translations were completed using T-SQL and the first iteration of the data warehouse was successfully designed and implemented as part of a continuous integration methodology.

With a working data warehouse, we completed the development of several complex SSAS tabular models in short order using SQL Server Data Tools (SSDT) and DAX, Microsoft’s development language for PowerPivot and SSAS tabular models.

The flexibility and intuitive nature of DAX made it easy for the development team to successfully address a significant number of challenging business requirements that included implementing sophisticated, fiscal calendar date arithmetic, complex inventory calculations, and custom financial formulas.

Our customer has begun leveraging the new tabular models in Microsoft Excel and Power BI to create powerful visualizations using the model data.  Even at this early stage, they are benefiting from the actionable insights that have already been gained from the DW/BI system that is being developed.

Link to PDF: Power BI for Manufacturing



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