Armanino Case Study
Case Study

Dynamic Insights to Forecast & Analyze Growth

At A Glance

Customer Profile

As a world leader in connected home semiconductor solutions, Entropic’s silicon and software enables leading cable, satellite, telecommunications, over-the-air, and over-the-top operators to empower subscriber’s broadcast and IP-based TV experiences, anywhere. When a major acquisition necessitated a new ERP, the company turned to Microsoft Dynamics AX and Armanino to deploy and support it. After implementing Dynamics AX they then turned to Armanino for its Dynamic InsightsSM solution to extend the capabilities of that ERP with financial reporting, business intelligence, and budgeting, forecasting, and planning capabilities.

Software & Services

  • Dynamic InsightsSM by Armanino
  • Microsoft Dynamics AX
  • Armanino implementation and consulting services

Benefits

  • Cut an entire day from monthly forecasting process
  • Eliminated need for manual error checking
  • Freed up finance team to analyze data and engage with business owners

Business Challenge

Already the only pure-play platform semiconductor company in the connected whole-home entertainment market, Entropic began a transformative journey in 2012 to gain even more traction for its next-generation silicon and software solutions. By acquiring set-top box provider Trident Microsystems, Entropic significantly increased the scale and scope of its product offerings and market opportunity. It also doubled the size of its team globally.

As a result, Entropic now has more than 600 employees in operations in San Diego and San Jose, California; the United Kingdom; Hong Kong and Shenzhen, China; Taipei, Taiwan; and Tokyo. Not surprisingly, this massive influx of resources—and the accompanying increase in complexity—was more than the company’s existing ERP solution could handle. To support its aggressive growth objectives and automate supply chain management across multiple countries, Entropic turned to a new ERP system—Microsoft Dynamics AX—and hired Armanino as the implementation partner.

With that ERP implementation a success, Entropic turned to its next order of business: extending the capabilities of the new ERP system with a tool that could extract data for budgeting, forecasting, and planning purposes as well as financial reporting and business intelligence (BI). For Imran Mohammed, senior financial planning and analysis manager for Entropic, that day couldn’t come soon enough.

“At the time, all of our bottom-up planning was Excel-based,” says Mohammed, “which meant that collaboration, consolidation, file size, and speed were all problems.” Process improvements had become nearly impossible because of the months it took to refresh templates and share them with the appropriate parties. “We wanted to introduce rolling forecasts, but the process was just too cumbersome and complex to undertake with spreadsheets,” says Mohammed.

Solution

Entropic conducted an extensive review of reporting and analytics tools before choosing Armanino and its Dynamic InsightsSM for Microsoft Dynamics solution. “Our team had previous experience with systems from some of the big players in the BI market,” says Mohammed. “We knew that they were huge, costly, and took months to implement. This was the opposite of what we wanted at Entropic, where our goal was to bring in the simplest cloud-based solution possible—one that would be easy for everyone to use, maintain, and adapt to international processes.”

Dynamic Insights for Microsoft Dynamics fit the bill perfectly. Not only did it offer the polished information and process flows that Entropic was seeking at a price point the company appreciated, it was also “by far the easiest, most straightforward, and most manageable BI implementation” Mohammed had ever experienced.

Much of this ease can be attributed to the consultation and support provided by Armanino. Says Steve Gray, senior manager of business applications for Entropic, “With Armanino, it’s like they are a part of my own development team. Even though my Entropic team is small, having Armanino’s resources at my disposal makes me feel like I have a large group. This close association with Armanino has contributed immeasurably to the stability of the system.”

Opting for a phased deployment of the Dynamic Insights solution, Entropic has already implemented the Adaptive Planning component to streamline budgeting and forecasting. The company is also in the process of rolling out a customized dashboard for bookings, billings, and backlogs. Armanino used the QlikView capabilities within Dynamic Insights to create the dashboard for Entropic.

Results

While it’s still early in the Dynamic Insights deployment at Entropic, the company is already enjoying its benefits. Gone are the days of manually loaded actuals and forecasting data, replaced by the one-click loading and instant visibility provided by Dynamic Insights. As a result, says Mohammed, “We easily save at least one day’s work from our monthly forecasting process. Even more important, we no longer have to worry about manually double-checking for inaccuracies. We spend less time on data manipulation, collection, and integration and more time on actually being able to analyze the data and engage with business owners to provide them with finance team support.”

For Entropic’s chief financial officer, Chris Stewart, the solution’s flexibility and ease of use are major advantages. ”With Dynamic Insights, I can look at data in a variety of ways,” he says. “After just a few days of training, my IT team is now able to configure data views in just minutes. Because the solution is user-friendly for IT, it allows that team to provide what I’m looking for as a business user.”

Because the solution scales easily, it can keep pace with Entropic’s evolution and growth—providing centralized control where needed and decentralized control for departmental access. The Armanino Dynamic Insights solution is performing precisely as Entropic hoped it would, enhancing the company’s Dynamics AX system by delivering powerful analytic and reporting tools to:

  • Provide a single version of the truth (through data integration from AX and other systems)
  • Speed information delivery to business users
  • Eliminate manual consolidation of data and maintenance of Excel spreadsheets

Next Steps

As the phased implementation of Dynamic Insights continues, a reporting and consolidation project is already underway in which data will be brought in from both Dynamics AX and another system. Once that’s finished, says Mohammed, “our goal is to introduce a rolling 16-month forecast. We’ve never been able to achieve that before, but with Dynamic Insights, it should be easy.”

For More Information

Armanino has helped many companies quickly implement and integrate data from GL, ERP, CRM, HR systems and data warehouses – on-premise or in the cloud – to create a 360-degree view of an organization’s performance. Let us help you. Contact us to discuss how Dynamic InsightsSM can enable you to improve your budgeting and forecasting practices – as well as your business. To learn more, visit http://learn.amllp.com/dynamic-insights.

Download Case Study

January 19, 2015

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