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SAS® Visual Analytics offers Euramax Coated Products faster access to predictive decisions

The leadership team at Euramax Coated Products knows that the company's success can depend on understanding and sometimes even redefining the future.

One example of this vision? The extraordinary color performance of the world's largest pre-coated aluminum roof at Ferrari World in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. The massive, red, logo-shaped structure looks almost like a futuristic ship has landed gracefully in the desert terrain.

With the completeness and the speed of data that SAS Visual Analytics provides, combined with its intuitive interface, our analysts can, and will, push themselves to get answers to their questions.

Peter Wijers
Business Support Manager

Another example is the company's commitment to business analytics and data exploration. "Exploring data helps both our analysts and our decision makers in gauging the dynamics of our industry," says Peter Wijers, Euramax Business Support Manager. "We're consistently striving to improve our processes and detect root causes for discrepancies in results.

"Confidence in the quality of our data leads to more rapid and fundamentally sound decisions."

SAS Visual Analytics helps Euramax experience that confidence. "With the completeness and the speed of data that SAS Visual Analytics provides," Wijers says, "combined with its intuitive interface, our analysts can, and will, push themselves to get answers to their questions."

More dynamic exploration

Euramax Coated Products is a premium coil coater, serving the European, Middle East and Asian markets. Its three coil-coating lines manufacture pre-coated aluminum and steel for applications in architectural products, transportation and corporate identity design.

Euramax's pre-coated metals cover all kinds of products, from building facades to household appliances, working with some of the most prominent brands in the world.

The company's objectives in employing visual analytics were to:

  • Gain more dynamic reporting and exploration capabilities.
  • Provide for more probing research.
  • Enhance mobility, including the ability to carry data out into the field and share it with customers.

"We wanted to have our data available at any time, to gain quicker insights and make better decisions, anywhere," Wijers says, and to be able to present data in a variety of easy-to-grasp formats.

Euramax now employs SAS Visual Analytics in multiple countries to improve production operations and broaden its research and for financial reporting, with more applications being added on an ongoing basis.

Drilling down

The most common problem with static reporting, Wijers says, is that you can see deviations in the end result but still don't know the causes. Requests to analysts for detailed information take time and, generally, the more detailed the results, the more questions that are raised."

Often an analyst's gut feeling is right, but he doesn't have the means to easily verify it," he says. "SAS Visual Analytics reporting tools allow users to quickly and easily add filters or drill down to a more detailed level of information."

Focusing on the real causes

But sometimes those gut feelings are wrong – and here, as well, SAS Visual Analytics comes in handy.

Euramax uses Lean Six Sigma teams to analyze and solve issues in processes in a structured manner. While productive, this process often reveals that expectations and gut feelings can't be proven.

"Sticking to those gut feelings can hinder employees in their search for improvement," Wijers says. "While identifying outliers, visual analytics allows you to see correlations that weren't expected, and the focus can be put on the real causes."

Road warrior-worthy

Equally important to Euramax is the mobility of SAS Visual Analytics.

Many Euramax employees travel the world and are regularly confronted with the need for information instantly on their mobile devices, often with no Internet connection available.

"With SAS Visual Analytics, the key data is stored with the reports, so access is ensured 24/7, anywhere," Wijers says.

Reports are also designed for the individual user level, allowing Euramax to set up a safe structure for access.

"Our people now have what they need, when they need it," he says.

Wijers is confident of the response as Euramax continues to make SAS Visual Analytics available to more employees: "They're going to be thrilled to have it."

Freedom and flexibility of analysis

Wijers sees visual analytics as opening up the opportunity to explore new areas of efficiency and innovation – to answer questions that haven't previously been posed.

"It's a common fact that when analysts take a lot of time in offering findings, management's motivation to request different approaches to the analysis wanes," Wijers says. "But with SAS Visual Analytics, once the data is loaded, analysts are off and running, without the need for any specialized support. With that level of freedom and flexibility of analysis, answers can be found much faster, and with a higher degree of quality.

"The power and ease of use of SAS Visual Analytics will allow our employees to analyze data in a much more efficient way. Now, knowing that all of the reporting is based on detailed flat data, editing a report and searching for root causes in deviations will be easy to do.

"Once users understand the power that SAS Visual Analytics offers, they'll be much more highly motivated to explore the data and offer new insights."

Challenge

Gain more dynamic reporting and exploration capabilities, provide for more probing research, enhance mobility, including the ability to carry data out into the field and share it with customers.

Solution

SAS® Visual Analytics

Benefits

Ability to access data anytime and anywhere for deeper insights that inspire better decisions.

The results illustrated in this article are specific to the particular situations, business models, data input, and computing environments described herein. Each SAS customer’s experience is unique based on business and technical variables and all statements must be considered non-typical. Actual savings, results, and performance characteristics will vary depending on individual customer configurations and conditions. SAS does not guarantee or represent that every customer will achieve similar results. The only warranties for SAS products and services are those that are set forth in the express warranty statements in the written agreement for such products and services. Nothing herein should be construed as constituting an additional warranty. Customers have shared their successes with SAS as part of an agreed-upon contractual exchange or project success summarization following a successful implementation of SAS software. Brand and product names are trademarks of their respective companies.

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