Data Analytics as a Service

Seamlessly integrating multi-sourced data to support powerful data-driven decisions

Hissho Sushi relies on Data Analytics as a Service solution to fortify its sales insights

Hissho Sushi implemented Versiant’s Data Analytics as a Service (DAaaS) solution to unify and streamline its data sourcing capabilities to provide timely, validated and trusted data that offers critical insights into its sales, operations and supply chain. With this centralized data repository, Hissho Sushi is able to quickly run reports and access accurate, business-enabling insights in minutes.

  • Unified database aggregates data from multiple sources
  • Near real-time data provides insights into key business metrics
  • Fact-based reporting promotes impactful business decisions

Inconsistent data hinders visibility into sales metrics

Hissho Sushi operates 1,800 franchise locations in grocery stores, large department stores, universities, and government buildings across the country. Gaining insight into its sales data across all of these locations is paramount to help the organization optimize its operations and make effective business decisions. However, Hissho relied on individual retailers to provide them with these details, and as a result, the information was not delivered on the same day or even the same time period, as some retailers provided weekly data and others provided monthly data. To add to these inconsistencies, retailers calculated their numbers differently and provided them in different formats. For example, some retailers provided net sales, while others provided gross sales, and some included the commission, while others did not.

Because of these variations, Hissho spent significant time calculating this information to make it consistent before entering it into a spreadsheet. This manual process was riddled with inefficiencies and the potential for human error, and pulled Hissho employees away from more strategic initiatives. It also limited Hissho’s ability to track and analyze its daily sales metrics and ongoing marketing efforts, react to issues and make proactive decisions based on verified, timely data.

To gain a more accurate and comprehensive picture of its business operations and sales, Hissho needed a more effective way to collect and analyze this multi-sourced data to make more data-driven decisions. To achieve this, Hissho sought the expertise of Versiant Corporation, the IT services provider it was working with to strengthen its overall IT infrastructure.

Unified data repository aligns information for reliable reporting

Versiant recommended its Data Analytics as a Service solution, which provides a centralized, cloud-based data warehouse that automatically consolidates data from multiple sources to offer on-demand access to information—anywhere, anytime and from any connected device.

Versiant worked closely with Hissho to understand the company’s business systems and the information it needed to access. Equipped with these critical details, Versiant devised the Data Analytics as a Service solution, meshing Hissho’s previously siloed SAP system with near-real-time sales data from seven of its largest retailer partners into a single, highly scalable database.

To ensure the accuracy of this diverse data, Versiant normalized and mapped the data to ensure it aligned across all providers, eliminating the need for Hissho to manually standardize the metrics.

“Hissho wanted to move away from the inefficiencies and inaccuracies of manually inputting data into a spreadsheet,” said Chris Fogarty, Chief Technology Officer at Versiant Corporation. “The automation and business logic built into our solution provides a direct stream of information that eliminates human error, improves accuracy, and delivers data in near real-time to provide Hissho with a more holistic view of its sales across multiple locations.”

With information in a single location, Hissho heightened its visibility into its sales data and operations. To access and sculpt this data in a meaningful way, Versiant also created a series of reports to detail Hissho’s critical metrics, including daily sales and same-store sales. This information is available from a customized, self-service dashboard that provides Hissho’s non-technical staff with critical data analytics and insights. By applying a variety of filters, end users can drill down on the data for a more granular look at operations. This point-and-click access fosters consistency across reports and reduces the time it takes to create reports from hours to minutes.

The solution is also powered by Microsoft technologies and integrates with other Microsoft applications Hissho’s team already leverages. This simplifies work processes, avoids multiple software licensing fees, and delivers more value.

The scalability of the web-based architecture also allows Hissho to retain historical data without impacting performance. This provides more data points to allow Hissho to analyze data over the longer term and identify business or sales trends, week over week, year over year or for any other time frame.

To offer the outstanding customer support it stakes its reputation on, Versiant also set up alerts to notify it of an issue with the infrastructure. This allows Versiant to quickly react to and rectify an issue before it impacts any of Hissho’s 75 Power BI end users.

Centralized data enables trusted insights and data-backed decisions

With Data Analytics as a Service, Hissho has achieved a more holistic and accurate view of its business. The automated processes built into the system allow Hissho to streamline the collection of data, filtering sales data directly from its franchises into the database on a daily basis. The organization can now track and analyze its sales data in near real-time to gauge the success of promotions, including its popular “Sushi Wednesday” events. Prior to utilizing Data Analytics as a Service, sales data for this event was rolled up into weekly—and in some cases, monthly—sales numbers, not providing any insight into the success of the promotion. Now, Hissho can access retailers’ daily sales and be more proactive in its marketing efforts and sales decisions.

Versiant’s Data Analytics as a Service solution also eliminates the manual efforts of compiling this information, saving tremendous time and allowing employees to engage in more business-critical initiatives. It also greatly improves the accuracy of the data by automatically aggregating and aligning it to eliminate human errors. This automation reduces Hissho’s reliance on tribal knowledge. Previously, Hissho relied on its employees to decipher between two retailers that utilized the same store code. By coding these stores differently on the backend, Versiant allowed Hissho to seamlessly distinguish between the stores without relying on employees’ historic knowledge of the issue.

By integrating SAP into the solution, Versiant allows Hissho to layer multiple data sources to assess business metrics across a wider network of information. Hissho can now slice this broadened pool of information according to any number of parameters including store numbers, franchise operators, regions and more. Before this integration of information, if a franchise was sold, the sales data from the previous owner was transferred to the new operator. The incorporation of this data with SAP allows Hissho to segregate sales to more precisely track franchise historical sales.

Data Analytics as a Service also provides Hissho with insight into its supply chain, allowing the organization to assess what kind of sushi is selling best to optimize its ordering process. This is particularly essential given the limited shelf life of sushi. Understanding what is being sold, and how quickly, enables Hissho to more effectively forecast needs and offer promotions to manage its inventory.

This insight also allows Hissho to effectively monitor its sale of supplies to its franchises. To ensure the freshness and integrity of its products, Hissho requires franchises to purchase specific product supplies directly from them. Data Analytics as a Service allows Hissho to compare the quantity of individual products a franchise is selling with what supplies they are purchasing from Hissho to ensure that the quantities are in line with expectations. This visibility allows Hissho to quickly identify franchises that may be purchasing supplies from another source. Armed with this information, Hissho can be more proactive in ensuring the quality of its products and protect a critical revenue stream.

The potential of Hissho’s Data Analytics as a Service capabilities is still largely untapped and Hissho continues to work with Versiant to add more data points to enrich its understanding and reporting capabilities. While this solution is currently focused on the company’s franchise model, data from the consumer-packaged goods side of its business is also in the database, offering the potential for powerful insights into that portion of the business as well.

Hissho is also planning to use Data Analytics as a Service to strengthen its control over its food safety auditing processes. By pairing this with an automated inspection tool, Hissho can improve consistency and efficiency of its inspections and harness more data points without manually logging this information.

Ultimately, Versiant’s Data Analytics as a Service solution has provided Hissho with heightened confidence in the metrics it uses to make proactive business decisions.

“The ability to create a data solution using Versiant’s Microsoft Cloud Advanced Data Analytics solution has allowed us to pull together our retail sales data in real-time and provide the ability to evaluate sales against a plethora of KPIs ranging from customer satisfaction, production, safety and other metrics to provide meaningful insights into our business. This architecture is also a foundation for more advanced capabilities in our near future” said Dan Beem, CEO, Hissho Sushi

“The automation and business logic built into our solution provides a direct stream of information that eliminates human error, improves accuracy, and delivers data in near real-time to provide Hissho with a more holistic view of its sales across multiple locations.”

Chris Fogarty, Chief Technology Officer and Founding Partner

Versiant Corporation