Established in 1952, Nuqul Group is a large, diversified industrial group in the Middle East. Its 31 regional and global companies manufacture a range of consumer goods, including hygienic tissue paper, processed meats, aluminum, and concrete. Nuqul Group is based in Amman, Jordan, and employs more than 5,500 worldwide and 3,000 people in Jordan.
The company’s 1,000 knowledge workers are critical to its success. “Time is money in manufacturing,” says Tamer Nassrawin, Business Services Section Head for Nuqul Group. “All our knowledge workers depend on Microsoft Office programs for everyday tasks, and anything we can do to make them more efficient makes the company more successful.”
For example, the accounting department used Microsoft Office Excel 2007 spreadsheet software to produce financial reports. However, finance employees had to ask the IT staff for help with collecting data from back-end business systems, which delayed reports and burdened the IT staff.
The human resources (HR) department distributed its new-employee orientation kit on a CD, which was clunky to navigate. “It also did not present a good face to new employees,” Nassrawin says. “They would usually get frustrated at not being able to find what they needed and call HR with questions.”
In manufacturing, teams used Microsoft Office Visio 2007 drawing and diagramming software to design workflows, but they needed a simpler tool. Engineers spent excessive amounts of time creating and fine-tuning diagrams. Diagram authors would deploy the workflows to Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 sites, but because the diagrams were static, team members could not see which process steps had been completed.
Because its workers depended on Microsoft Office programs, Nuqul agreed to participate in the Microsoft Rapid Deployment Program for Microsoft Office 2010, and in January 2010 began to deploy Microsoft Office Professional Plus 2010. Nuqul plans to have all 1,000 information worker desktops upgraded by the end of 2010.
The finance group has upgraded to Microsoft Excel 2010 and uses the PowerPivot for Excel add-in to quickly link spreadsheets to back-end data sources and drill down into those sources from Excel spreadsheets. Employees use the new Sparklines feature to see mini-charts inside individual spreadsheet cells and the Slicers feature to filter PivotTable data—both providing better data insight.
The HR department is distributing the new-employee orientation kit by using the Microsoft OneNote 2010 note-taking program. The material is now organized like an electronic notebook, with highly visual presentation, easier navigation, video clips, photos, and other multimedia elements.
Manufacturing teams have upgraded to Microsoft Visio Premium 2010, which provides predrawn shapes and templates for easier diagram creation, automatic layout adjustment, and Subprocesses and Containers to group-related shapes. With Visio Services, teams can render Visio diagrams within a browser so that team members can easily view up-to-date drawings from anywhere.
By upgrading to Office Professional Plus 2010 and Visio Premium 2010, Nuqul Group has improved productivity across the company, speeding financial reporting, providing a more engaging employee training kit, and helping teams create dynamic manufacturing workflows more easily.
Faster Financial Reporting
The Nuqul finance team has observed terrific performance improvements with the move to Excel 2010. “Extracting data using PowerPivot for Excel is 5 to 10 times faster than our previous process,” Nassrawin says. “Plus, the more data we pulled into Office Excel 2007, the slower the reports ran. Excel 2010 is so much faster. When we refresh 5,000 records, it takes 10 seconds instead of 30 seconds. Instead of spending 15 minutes extracting data, analysts spend 2 minutes extracting and the other 13 minutes analyzing it.”
Finance employees are also able to pull data themselves rather than waiting for the IT staff to do it for them. This makes both the finance and IT staffs more productive. Features such as Sparklines and Slicers give finance workers more and enhanced visual representations of financial trends.
Better Employee Training
Nuqul is growing rapidly, and competition for talent is stiff. “We want to hire the best people and give them the best experience,” Nassrawin says. “By distributing the orientation kit as a OneNote 2010 notebook, it’s much easier to use and navigate, which encourages new employees to actually read it and reduces the number of phone calls to HR.”
Easier Workflow Design
With the upgrade to Visio 2010, Nuqul has reduced the time required to create and update manufacturing diagrams. “Automatic alignment in Visio 2010 saves at least 30 minutes per diagram,” Nassrawin says. “Plus, because the diagrams are updated on SharePoint sites, they are always current and provide much better representations of live processes.”
Direct Impact on Revenue
These productivity improvements and others being discovered every day—such as new email organization and management features in Microsoft Outlook 2010—are saving time for employees across the company. “Our information workers are the heartbeat of the business,” Nassrawin says. “By using Microsoft Office 2010, they can get to information faster and understand it better. Anything that impacts them impacts our revenue.”
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