Welch Allyn is a leading global manufacturer of medical diagnostic equipment with a wide range of connected solutions. After 100 years of independence, in 2015, the company agreed to be acquired by Hill-Rom, a publicly traded med-tech company, for $2.05 billion.
Host Analytics would prove crucial to the deal, supplying much-needed due diligence data executives were having trouble extracting from SAP.
“We needed to provide a lot of information to Hill-Rom in terms of cost centers, the expenses that go with those costs centers, historical data, revenue information, all that sort of stuff,” says Rick Odom, Welch Allyn’s Senior Manager for Financial Planning and Analysis.
Odom was able to get and send the data in Excel format while traveling. He’d been attending Host Analytics World, our annual customer conference, at the time executives were negotiating the final terms of the Hill-Rom acquisition.
Excel Couldn’t Handle Rolling Forecasts
That Odom had access to Host Analytics in 2015 was the result of trouble with Excel five years earlier. Back then, Odom says Welch Allyn’s Chief Financial Officer began asking for 18-month forecasts to go with the budgets that, at the time, would take at least two months of collecting and massaging data in Excel. Adding new workbooks to create rolling forecasts wouldn’t work because, as Odom puts it, “Excel quickly becomes unwieldy” as you scale up data needs.
Host Analytics Improved Time to Insight
So, in the summer of 2011, he and his team began the switch to Host Analytics. Four months and another miserable Excel-driven budget cycle later they had the system fully operational and Odom’s team has been delivering rolling forecasts every month since. Budgeting also takes up about 75 percent less time than it used to.
Supporting Growth Without Taking a Toll On IT
Welch Allyn gets these benefits with limited help from the IT team. Why? Odom says he had to promise managers that he’d avoid using technical resources assigned to manage the SAP installation that still serves as Welch Allyn’s ERP system of record.
Finance would have to develop, test, and deploy on their own—and they did, with no regrets. To this day, Odom says Host Analytics makes it easy by introducing new features via the cloud. And with nothing install or update, Odom is doing more with fewer staff. The inherent efficiency of the Host Analytics Enterprise Performance Platform makes that possible. “I see it every day,” he says.
To learn more, read the full case study "Compressed Forecasting Provides Welch Allyn Critical Insight.".