Airfreight container management company Jettainer is winning new business and needs faster data processing to keep up with growing volumes of data. The company also wants to reduce the complexity of its IT environment, which has separate platforms
for inventory control and business intelligence (BI). Jettainer is implementing a solution based on Microsoft technology, which will improve system performance and data quality.
Based in Germany, logistics service provider Jettainer manages airfreight transport containers and skids for airline companies. The company has the largest fleet of loading devices in the world, with 85,000 containers and skids at 350 airports. Jettainer
tracks and monitors its loading unit inventory with Jettware, a proprietary IT solution.
The air cargo business is fast-paced, and airlines often need skids and containers on short notice. To make sure that its airline customers get the containers and pallets they need when they need them, Jettainer must know where each of its loading units
is located at any one time.
In recent years, Jettainer has gained many new customers, which has resulted in larger volumes of data and growing requirements for inventory control and data processing. That has prompted the company to look for a more powerful data management solution
to keep pace with its growing needs.
Jettainer would also like to simplify its IT environment, which is complicated by its use of separate data platforms for inventory control and business intelligence. Jettainer has used Microsoft SQL Server software to track its loading-unit inventory since
2004, and its Jettware solution has been running on Microsoft SQL Server 2005. But for business intelligence, Jettainer has been running a different platform, Cognos. Having separate platforms for inventory control and BI forces the company’s small IT department
to learn and manage two different systems.
||SQL Server 2012 delivers an excellent price-to-performance ratio as a complete package. Compared with other solutions, there is no need for separate licensing of components and functions.
Dr. Ralf Hoelper
To improve its data-handling capabilities, Jettainer hired Microsoft Gold Certified partner avialytics to upgrade its Jettware solution to Microsoft SQL Server 2012. At the same time, Jettainer decided to use SQL Server 2012 and Microsoft SQL Server 2012
Master Data Services to replace its Cognos BI system. The solution, which is being gradually implemented throughout 2012, integrates with Microsoft Office and uses Microsoft BizTalk Server, the Microsoft Visual Studio development system, Microsoft Bing Maps,
and the Microsoft Silverlight browser plug-in.
Jettainer opted for Microsoft technology because its powerful, easy-to-use tools—such as SQL Server 2012 Data Tools—would support reliable operation and development of complex applications without the company needing to hire a lot of experts. Another reason
was that the company was already familiar with SQL Server. “We decided in favor of SQL Server for two reasons. First, the technology optimally meets our demands for a powerful analysis and reporting platform. Second, it is virtually impossible for a small
IT team of five members to thoroughly master different development and operating platforms,” says Dr. Ralf Hoelper, IT Director, Jettainer.
The solution comprises 16 cubes, 35 shared dimensions, and 60 role-playing dimensions. The novel BI semantic data model better integrates the previous multidimensional and relational data structures. The data warehouse size is only 2 terabytes rather than
4.5 terabytes because of the data compression achieved with SQL Server 2012. The constantly growing number of partitions—now more than 900—is easily manageable. The largest table contains 300 partitions, 900 gigabytes, and 8.5 billion data sets.
With SQL Server 2012 supporting both inventory tracking and BI, Jettainer has a single version of the truth for all business events. The software’s versatile analysis and reporting options are used throughout the operational process—from inventory analysis
and forecasts to quality control and invoicing. “Bottlenecks associated with the unit load devices would be completely unacceptable,” Hoelper says. “SQL Server allows us to track the inventory development in a timely manner and arrange additional supply as
The new solution will help Jettainer improve data analysis and data quality while holding down costs.
Visualization Drives Better Data Analysis
Jettainer expects that the new solution will help its employees improve their analysis of data, giving them new ways to better visualize it. The solution includes the SQL Server 2012 Power View graphical presentation feature and SQL Server 2012 PowerPivot
for Excel. “We expect employees to take an even harder look at the data and increasingly use it, for example, for the inventory scheduling for new customers,” Hoelper says. In addition, with Master Data Services, departments can manage master data with an
add-in to Microsoft Excel spreadsheet software.
10 Times Faster Querying Aids Quality
Faster data processing in SQL Server 2012 will help Jettainer improve the quality of its data and its response to changing situations. “SQL Server allows us to track the inventory development in a timely manner and arrange additional supply as necessary,”
Hoelper says. Data will be processed in the data warehouse three times a day instead of just once every night, so data will be fresher and more accurate. “In some subareas, the solution already processes queries 10 times faster than before. As for the entire
solution, we are projecting a speed improvement of 30 percent,” says Dr. Björn Hennig, CEO, avialytics.
Simpler Work Processes Contain Costs
Jettainer expects that a simpler IT environment based on Microsoft technology will help hold costs down. Moving away from Cognos makes database management easier. The interoperation of SQL Server 2012 with Microsoft Office increases acceptance among users
who are able to create PowerPivot or Power View reports and analyses without requiring much training. And the new SQL Server 2012 Data Tools development environment is simplifying work processes and reducing IT costs. “We use it to remedy minor errors, thus
expediting our own developments,” says Hoelper.
The simple licensing scheme is attractive, too. “SQL Server 2012 delivers an excellent price-to-performance ratio as a complete package,” says Hoelper. “Compared with other solutions, there is no need for separate licensing of components and functions.”
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