Pulling on your jeans, the name VF Corporation may not readily spring to mind; but it’s highly possible that they are in fact responsible for the brand you are wearing with Wrangler®, Lee®, and Riders®, being among their portfolio. And it doesn’t stop there – in the wardrobe you’ll probably have a jacket by The North Face®, a bag by Eastpak®, sweaters by Nautica® and 7 For All Mankind® premium denim are among the company’s many aspirational brands.
The apparel business is affected by the temperature of the economy as well as the weather; it is fast moving and those behind the scenes need to know what’s going where, what’s going well and what needs to be moved in an instant.
“We have over 300 custom databases, predominantly Notes based, housing many of our business processes,” says Barbara White, Project Manager at VF Corporation. “We need to integrate and report on this data for various departments within multiple coalitions around the world. Different data is required by different teams at different times. We were doing this manually using Excel. It was a mammoth, never-ending task.
“We saw Integra for Notes at a Lotus show and started small with a handful of licences. Since then, we’ve rolled it out to other departments and have approximately 300 users; we use the main Integra for Notes product as well as the Integra Quick Reports version which we use for ad-hoc reporting for our non-technical teams. This has taken a massive burden off the IS department and as the users see what Integra is capable of, more and more requests are coming in. It is currently in use in our offices in the U.S., across Europe and Asia.”
VF uses Integra for Notes to integrate data from multiple sources and deliver reports in Excel showing project status, product development information, statistics and critically, for customer service data (orders, returns etc.).
Barbara continues, “The beauty of Integra for Notes is that unlike the other tools on the market, it delivers data directly into Excel; and better than that, the folks at Integra have developed a one-click process to add graphs and other features to the output, so management can see information at a glance – without any further manipulation – in a format that suits them. This, in turn, can be used for the various management reports they have to deliver.”
The Integra for Notes product family enables reporting from Lotus Notes and other sources including SAP, Peoplesoft and Oracle, to Microsoft Word and Excel, and IBM’s Lotus Symphony. It enhances printing, reporting and analysis of data contained within these environments. It enables users, developers and administrators to generate reports from Lotus Notes and non-Notes databases without modifying the design of the Notes databases and without the need to install files on local machines or servers. Integra for Notes enables easy determination of filtering conditions and sorting options by the end user at the time of running a report delivering improved flexibility for the end-user to allow generation of reports meeting user conditions. Furthermore, ‘Send To’ options allow the sending of reports as Attachments, PDF files, Notes Rich Text or Document Links and saves data back into Lotus Notes.
“We have discovered some welcome, unexpected benefits as well,” continues Barbara. “When migrating data, we have been able to save a great deal of time and energy by using Integra for Notes to manage the task for us.”
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