Improved service at reduced IT cost | SAS

Improved service at reduced IT cost

SAS and ASG let users create their own web reports

Improve IT service for users at the same time you cut costs. It can be done. Arcelor Systems Genk provides its users with a fast and flexible opportunity to create their own tailor-made business reports. Meanwhile, the IT department ensures that the data is correct and staff stays focused on its core business. It’s a perfect win-win solution for both the IT department and users, thanks to the SAS® Business Intelligence Dashboard.


The SAS BI Dashboard solution is a winner for the end-users, because they are now in full command of their own Web reporting.

Kris Vranken
Site Manager

SAS and ASG let users create their own web reports

Arcelor Systems Genk (ASG) is a Business Intelligence Competence Center within ArcelorMittal, the world’s number one steel company. Being a shared service of the group, ASG is committed to delivering cost-efficient and highly effective business intelligence (BI) solutions, which include powerful SAS data warehousing and reporting tools.

User reports on Web pages

It is a long-term strategy of ASG to power up users to the maximum. “We are continuously striving to put more reporting capabilities into the hands of our users,” says Team Manager Kris Vranken. “The users don’t want to depend on available IT resources and we want to concentrate on our own core IT tasks.” The solutions that SAS has to offer, combined with their Microsoft Office add-ins, have always helped Vranken successfully meet thischallenge.
These tools enable users without any specific IT skills to select and aggregate the data, prepare reports, and output them in various ways, such as Excel sheets and associated graphs.
ASG now intends to go one step further and enable users to directly create their own Web reports using the new SAS® BI Dashboard solution. According to Kris Vranken, “the new SAS BI Dashboard promised to deliver just that and to become the crown jewel in our overall solution. Our initial tests have proven that SAS BI Dashboard is powerful yet easy to use.

Concentrate on core business

Thanks to SAS BI Dashboard, report presentations can be done by the endusers without direct support from IT staff at ASG. This frees up time for ASG to concentrate on their core business, which is making sure that the servers are running, the software is updated, and that correct data is available. “This is especially important at a time of decreasing IT budgets set against ever expanding user demands,” notes Kris Vranken. “After all, ASG is a separate business unit and has to be as competitive as any third party.

Improved reporting quality and speed

The solution is also a winner for the end-user, because they are now in full command of their own Web reporting. They can create exactly the reports they want, deciding about presentation issues like colors and graph types. And they can create them whenever they need them because they don’t have to wait for IT support to become available. In short, the SAS BI Dashboard has significantly improved reporting quality and speed.
With the successful test of the SAS BI Dashboard, Kris Vranken will now launch a campaign to educate his users on all of the advantages of the new system. “A first pilot implementation has immediately proven its value. My users will immediately be persuaded once they see how easy it is to create visual Web reports on complex business indicators such as site performances or cost evolutions.

SAS proves to be a business winner

Kris Vranken and his team have lived in a challenging business environment in recent years which has changed from being an IT department of a Belgian stainless steel producer to an independent business unit of the world’s largest steel company. In this globally competitive world, it is absolutely essential to be able to deliver intelligent and cost-effective solutions. In this respect SAS has always been a business winner for Vranken and his team. Things move fast in today’s steel business. Only five years ago, Kris Vranken worked for the IT department of stainless steel sheet producer ALZ in Genk, Belgium. ALZ first merged with the French stainless steel producer Ugine and then was integrated into Arcelor, adopting the name Arcelor Systems Genk (ASG). Today ASG is an independent Business Intelligence Competence Center within ArcelorMittal, the world’s number one steel company with 320,000 employees in more than 60 countries.

Swiss knife

Through all of these changes, Kris Vranken has successfully relied on SAS solutions. He has been working with SAS since 1994 and in 1998 used it to build the first data warehouse for ALZ. This proved to be particularly critical in the successful integration of the IT systems of ALZ and Ugine when that merger took place in 2002. Vranken recalls that, “given the strength and reliability of our system, Ugine decided to adopt our SAS data warehouse. We even managed to enable the Ugine staff to continue using their existing reporting tool, but now based on our SAS data warehouse. This clearly demonstrates how flexible SAS is. In fact, to me SAS is as flexible and versatile as the Swiss Army Knife in my pocket. I would hate to be without it.

New business perspectives

The SAS solutions not only survived the mergers, they opened additional new business perspectives for ASG within ArcelorMittal. As an example, Kris Vranken explains that his team now runs an important program for ArcelorMittal HR Corporate, again using the data warehouse capabilities of SAS. “We collect all relevant information about employees worldwide into a single data warehouse. This includes information about the employee’s current working location, his or her qualifications, and their willingness to transfer to another site or country. SAS enables us to complete such projects over a short period of time, making us extremely efficient. It has unquestionably made our solution the most competitive in the business.



Give users the tools to create their own business reports while ensuring correct data.


SAS® BI Dashboard


  1. Improved reporting quality and speed : the SAS BI Dashboard enables users to design their own Web reports with charts and graphs.
  2. Cost reduction : IT focuses on its core business, not on presentation issues.
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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