Driving ahead with data

Ashok Leyland is an Indian automotive-manufacturing company. Founded in 1948, it is the second-largest manufacturer of commercial vehicles, such as trucks and buses, as well as emergency and military vehicles. With a legacy spreading over it’s almost 70 years, the company enjoys a strong presence in the Indian commercial vehicle segment and also a strong global presence. To manage its extensive network of suppliers and distributors, Ashok Leyland decided to upgrade to SAP BW on HANA platforms from its existing SAP BW system. Ashok Leyland’s data warehouse was built on multi-layered data storage approach by multiple vendors at different points in time. The legacy system was heavy in terms of redundant data and the time to report. Hence, Ashok Leyland wanted to migrate its data to HANA for increased optimization.

“Optimize while migrate” over “migrate and optimize” approach

Ashok Leyland has taken a bold decision to take an “Optimize while migrate” approach to install a fresh BW system and re-implement all the data flows with all the optimization goals met. Ashok Leyland has high standard reports/dashboards backed by a large number of complex data models. Capgemini successfully assisted Ashok Leyland in remodelling its data architecture to have a much leaner and more efficient data warehouse. The warehouse has eliminated redundant data and complex interwoven data loading architecture, helping Ashok Leyland to reduce costs directly in HANA sizing, and the time spent on data maintenance. Intangibly, it has also improved the performance of“time to load” and“time to view” the reports.

On the other hand, a “Migrate and optimize” approach would have resulted in more redundant data and higher costs with more support resources needed to manage inefficient data architecture. Optimizing at a later time would have led to operational difficulties in the pursuit of a seamless transition to better data models.

Seamless migration

Capgemini along with Ashok Leyland has conducted a detailed study on the existing data models and and has re-engineered these with HANA best practices and optimization goals.

They chose the approach of zero downtime and seamless migration. As a result, the end users will only experience better performing reports without being hampered by transition effects during go-live.

In the long run, SAP HANA platform will help Ashok Leyland to deliver products faster to its customers, drive strategic decisions smooth, and create a smooth supply chain.

“In-Memory is here: Our information management strategy required a change. The innovative practices observed by us reduced vast amount of data redundancy thus making it possible to execute transformation on the fly, with BW HANA 7.4. A lot of actual processing has been moved to HANA in-memory, rather than BW application.”
Narendra Babu Dhamodharan, DGM – IT (Business Analytics and Big Data), Ashok Leyland

Results Count: SAP HANA helps Ashok Leyland to gear up for the growth in business

  • Improved management reporting: the number of reports and dashboards were reduced drastically from 443 to 168.
  • Efficient processes: with SAP HANA platforms, daily reports were released first thing in the morning as opposed to earlier, towards the day-end.
  • Cost reduction: maintaining a huge number of servers was reduced drastically.
  • Enhanced user experience: employees could view the new database without any hassles.
  • Stupendous improvement in speed from 2 to 120 times with improved code pushdown logics and backend calculations.
  • Reduced process chain monitoring effort by 70%.
  • Data load time for the day reduced from 16 hrs to 9 hrs.
  • Storage space reduction from 5TB to 650 GB.