Dow Corning Delivers BI for the Masses — from the Top Down

  • by Chris Maxcer, Contributing Writer
  • June 30, 2011
As an early adopter of SAP Business Warehouse, Dow Corning built a strong foundation of rock-solid data. After nearly a decade of Microsoft Excel-based access for analysts, however, the company needed fresh ways to explore its data, including deeper data mining, predictive analysis, and easy-to-use mobile dashboards. In 2009, Dow Corning reversed its analyst-first strategy and launched a top-down refresh using SAP NetWeaver Business Warehouse (BW) 7.1, SAP NetWeaver BW Accelerator, SAP BusinessObjects XI 3.1, and Roambi, a mobile business intelligence solution that transforms data into dashboard-style mobile analytics.

Headquartered in Midland, Michigan, Dow Corning is a $6 billion global company focused on the super-versatile silicon atom. As a global leader in silicone-based sealants and adhesives, Dow Corning offers more than 7,000 products, boasts 25,000 worldwide customers, and owns nearly 4,700 active patents. The company has approximately 11,500 employees located in three dozen countries with expertise in 30-plus industries, including aviation, construction, health care, lubrication, semiconductors, and solar.

With so many products in so many industries and countries, excellent business intelligence (BI) is a must-have competency for Dow Corning. Dow Corning is a strong “no-modification” SAP customer. “If SAP makes it, we have it,” notes Jeff Duly, an enterprise architect focused on BI for Dow Corning and project lead for the company’s BI transformation. Back in the mid-nineties, Dow Corning was one of the first four companies to partner with SAP in adopting SAP’s Business Warehouse (BW).

For years, Dow Corning was able to accurately run intelligence reports and better understand what was happening—primarily in hindsight—but in 2009, the company started looking ahead to bigger, tougher questions such as, Why did that happen? What will happen? What should happen? Then, of course, came the key question all smart companies want to address: How can I act on this insight?


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