Information system implementations are not IT projects

Guest Blogger: Chris Nealon, Supply Chain Consultant

If you ask the chef of a nuclear submarine what his primary duty is onboard he will reply “the safety of every crew member on this vessel.” Strange response from a chef, right?

I recently read Professor John Sullivan’s, Improving project outcomes through operational reliability after seeing him present the material at Wake Forest University. Sullivan’s work examines the relationship between High Reliability Organizations (HROs) like hospitals, or nuclear facilities and complex information systems implementations.

The major difference that Sullivan documents between HRO’s and complex IS systems like ERPs concerns the level of organization-wide support for the greater goal of the project. He underscores that the submarine chef’s level of accountability to the higher goal of submarine crew’s mission is unlikely to be matched by an employee of an organization implementing a new Information System.

Yes, Information System implementation failures do not carry the same gravity as HRO failures; HRO disasters yield tragedies like the USS Thresher and the Challenger Space Shuttle. Nonetheless, Sullivan highlights the similarities between HRO’s and complex Information Systems in terms of their expectations, risks, resource requirements, and consequences.

The wisdom that IS implementations can gain from Sullivan’s observations dictates that project managers should focus their efforts upfront and on education. Successful implementations hinge on a culture of understanding, reliability, communication, performance monitoring and ultimately, accountability. Simply stated, an information system implementation is not, and should not be considered an IT project; it is an organization-wide effort that relies on a comprehensive understanding of the overarching goal.

Sunrise BI app now available in iTunes

We are so excited to announce that we launched our very first iPad app!

The Sunrise BI app, for iPads, is now available in the iTunes App Store, and offers users an example of how you can turn business processes and information into a mobile app without any code or development. Just ask Brandon George, our Director of Business Intelligence, and he’ll tell you that we can take any of your data, create an engaged workflow targeted at any functional role on any device, and enable decision-to-action from anywhere. This app shows just that.

iTunesAre you a company looking to empower key decision makers with actionable insights across many disparate data sets? Wanting to process transaction data back to the originating source? Need to mobilize business operations? Try out the free iPad app here.

The Sunrise BI app is configured with sample data for an example fashion retail brand with dashboards preset to meet the common needs of five executive level personas:

  • Retail: Gain insight across region, channel, brand and category for company sales.
  • Customer Service: Fast understanding of shipping performance that impacts customer satisfaction.
  • Finance: Ability to dive across sales and COGS delivered from region, time, brand and financial dimensions.
  • Sourcing: Insight into product activity across receipts, returns and vendor performance across brand and product types.
  • Sales: Actionable analytics focused across regions, omni-channel and product categories for sales related insights.

Have you downloaded the app? Drop us a line and tell us what you think!



Beyond BI: Predictive analytics that are tailor fit for the Apparel and Footwear industries

Today’s Apparel and Footwear companies face a complex onslaught of supply chain optimization, SKU and BOM management, and planning and forecasting issues. The ultimate goal is fast turnaround to keep up with their customer demands. Years of experiences in the Apparel and Footwear industries means that Sunrise knows these challenges all too well, and has created value added solutions to help you be a lean, mean agile Apparel and Footwear company!


Through use of both our Microsoft and MicroStrategy expertise, we are now positioned more than ever to help Apparel and Footwear companies truly face the tough challenges that exist. With our ability to leverage tools like MicroStrategy Data Mining Services and embedded social collaboration like Microsoft Yammer – we create predictive analytics that focus specifically around the type of production and purchase planning that fits your lead time needs. Real time collaboration for your planning teams as well as mobile enablement allows the most effective use of time.


Further, we can then use our foundation in planning and forecasting to enable a truly collaborative experience that spans across you’re product, planning and design teams. Our wealth of knowledge and flexible tools allows Sunrise to take advantage of any source system you have in place and tailor it to your specific needs.


Further with our keen understanding of the Apparel and Footwear business needs, we are able to leverage years of value added experience that we bring to the table to produce the desired turnaround times that a company like yours is in need of. From style, color and allotted size planning variables, to seasonality trends & analysis, as well as market basket analysis and more! All building towards true prescriptive analytics that combines both description & forecasting to enable optimized human workflow for addressing customer and partner demands.


All of this is possible, no matter the desired level of workflow. Need to make use of Excel in your forecasting? Not a problem! Need to have a full workflow, with version control over a forecast before it’s committed for demand planning? No an issue! Want to understand the next steps in getting started? Contact me at: and we can schedule a phone call to discuss!

Compile, pivot, link, and analyze your data

Sunrise BI Actionable Insights: CFO

Compile, pivot, link, and analyze data putting business insights at your fingertips, no matter where you are.

Check out the short video on actionable insights; advanced Business Intelligence created by Sunrise Technologies. Like what you see? Email me at

Collaborate with Integrated Dashboards

Sunrise BI Actionable Insights: VP of Customer Service

See how integrated dashboards promote collaboration and provide quick wins!

Check out the short video on actionable insights; advanced Business Intelligence created by Sunrise Technologies. Like what you see? Email me at

Put Data to Work Anytime, on Any Device, Anywhere

Sunrise BI Actionable Insights: VP of Retail

Sunrise Technologies understands our customers are in the data and mobile business. Sunrise Business Intelligence (BI) allows customers to put data to work anytime, on any device, anywhere.

Check out the short video on actionable insights; advanced Business Intelligence created by Sunrise Technologies. Like what you see? Send me an email at

Beyond BI – Enabling true Data-to-Decision and Decision-to-Action

Having data is one thing, but crafting a message that allows decision is another. There is a real science and art to achieving such a goal. Beyond driving people to right decisions, or allowing the making of such, lays the next step of action.


Action implies the doing, and that is exactly the type of enablement we achieve for our customers with our Business Intelligence practice. With the combination of Microsoft and MicroStrategy technologies we are able to create intelligence from a company’s data assets, across any platform that turbo charges any process.


Need the ability to cross Microsoft Dynamics AX with CRM? Have an off-site cloud line-of-business application that you need to cross with ERP data from any vendor? Need to mobilize and enable your sales force – creating customer experiences that drives true brand loyalty? Need help in regression modeling for predictive demand planning & forecasting? If you can answer yes to any or all of these, that is what we do.

We can easily take any data, create an engaged workflow on any device, enabling decision-to-action from anywhere. When I say any data, this includes:

  • Microsoft Dynamics AX, GP, NAV, CRM, etc.
  • SAP
  • Oracle
  • Sage
  • Infor Products
  • Azure, SalesForce and other Cloud providers
  • Hadoop & more!

Literally any data source that you have a need to surface data from, including other analytical data structures is valid to model against. Further the need to create long tail data warehouse projects are no longer required. With our ability to perform “data blending” concepts, a single schema across multiple source systems can easily grow into a true adaptable intelligence framework.

Not only can any data source be a valid target, all popular mobile platforms, like Apple and Android, exist in full native application experiences. This means being able to create a workflow of intelligence beyond your walls, securely, across multiple platforms from a single deployment.


Sunrise Business Intelligence is able to surface data so that the targeted persona can make an informed and timely decision. Finally, through the same dynamic platform, we are able to allow for action with full write back ability to the same source transactional systems. This is all possible while having the ability to take full advantage of the business layer that so much of your investment of time has been made in.

Interested? Wanting to know more? Too good to be true? Try us, and let the Sunrise Business Intelligence team show how all the above, and much more is possible through our practice. Contact me at: