BP’s corporate E&P unit has migrated its ‘in year’ group financial outlook planning process to a new system from Altius Consulting. BP’s analysts need access to real time financial, production, resources, and pricing data from its Hong Kong, Houston, Buenos Aires, Aberdeen, and London offices.
BP’s legacy system infrastructure was conceived for local use as BP analyst Graham Yerbury explained, ‘As long as it was serving a single building, it worked adequately. But we needed to extend it to a broader audience through the BP intranet.’
Altius Consulting recommended a solution built atop Microsoft’s business intelligence toolkit—Microsoft Analysis Services. Arcplan DynaSight provided a user interface to the system that lets users develop their own reports without relying on programmers.
Altius’ David Anderson said, ‘Microsoft has changed the price profile for OLAP* technologies. Companies can now access OLAP and relational database technologies for a fraction of the cost they’d have paid a couple of years ago.’ Yerbury added, ‘We used to print off tabs in 65 Excel workbooks—now the information is distributed as a Microsoft Office Word document through the e-mail system or read online. The combination of SQL Server 2000 and Analysis Services has enabled us to do things with our business processes that we couldn’t do before. Cost per seat is down—we are saving around $100,000 per year in maintenance.’ The solution is now being extended to BP’s Russian joint venture, TNK-BP.
* On-Line Analytical Processing—reporting by ‘slicing and dicing’ of multi-dimensional data ‘cubes’.
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