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Australian Leisure and Hospitality Group saves $200,000 on data warehousing

The Australian Leisure and Hospitality Group (ALH) has saved $200,000 a year after moving its data warehousing from Oracle to Microsoft.

Speaking to Computerworld Australia, ALH's IT Manager, Rick Coenen, said the group, which is comprised of 286 licensed venues and over 460 retail liquor outlets, assessed its existing Oracle platform after the company separated from Foster's Group and was bought by Woolworths and Bruce Bruce Mathieson.

"The data warehouse we had originally was created back in the Foster's days," Coenen said. "So it was built on the Oracle platform and only had one source system feeding into it."

With the new management team wanting to look at company data in a different light, Coenen said he went to market for a new solution; deploying a new data warehouse built on Microsoft's SQL Server 2008 R2 Enterprise Edition.

"All of our other systems were basically Microsoft, and under the new ownership we moved from Oracle financials to Microsoft Great Plains financials, so the majority of our systems were on Microsoft," he said.

"It made sense for us to move to a data warehouse that was also based on the Microsoft platform."

After conducting a tender process for the project, Coenen said he chose to partner with consulting and technology firm Oakton for the rollout.

"At the time we had five vendors in place that were suitable for us, so we did some requirements, went through a selection process and thought Oakton was a great fit for ALH," he said.

Looking back on 18 months after the project began, Coenen said ALH has achieved its return on investment, with the project saving the business $200,000 a year.

"Through better business intelligence, we have far better buying power and better processing of rebates than we've had in the past," he said.

"Lower cost of ownership in terms of IT has allowed us to save around $200,000 a year by having a Microsoft platform instead of Oracle."

Coenen said the third phase of the data warehousing project will continue ALH's relationship with Oakton, with the integration of other areas of the business now taking place.

"I think a data warehouse is an ever-evolving thing, and we've just started the third phase of our data warehouse which is to integrate our workforce and payroll as well," he said.

"We're still partnering with Oakton and we're in the detailed requirements phases of that as well."

Follow Lisa Banks on Twitter: @CapricaStar

Follow Computerworld Australia on Twitter: @ComputerworldAU

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