The UK’s leading health and safety equipment supplier partners with the SAP HANA specialists at Centiq to ‘Get the job done’ and improve worker safety.

Headquartered in Hull, Arco manages an extensive catalogue of 22,000 product lines, an interactive website and 49 strong trade counters network. The fourth generation family-run business, began life selling tennis balls to Wimbledon 130 years ago. Today, the company has sales of over £268m and employs approximately 1,600 people.

Safe and Agile

Arco’s on-going challenge is to ensure stock is delivered to the right location at the right time, so hazardous tasks can proceed accident-free. As a seasonal business, Arco works to tight building project deadlines. Its IT processes need to be agile and deliver results quickly to guarantee worker safety at all times. Centiq got the job done.

An existing SAP customer, Arco already had the tools to build IT systems but soon realised it needed outside help to implement SAP’s game-changing in-memory database, SAP HANA. The board wanted its SAP management reporting application, Business Warehouse (BW), to run stock positioning reports and enlisted Centiq’s help to implement a solution based on SAP HANA.

Arco needed a design with a low cost entry point and a forward-looking roadmap. Centiq presented a business case for SAP HANA, built the hardware infrastructure, configured it and tested its performance once live.

Centiq’s role was not just as a service provider but to provide strategic guidance to Arco during its SAP HANA deployment. To deliver even more customer value, Centiq provided Arco with its purpose-built SAP HANA systems management platform, Optiq, so its in-house team could proactively monitor the performance and capacity of their database in real-time.

Fast and On-budget

Arco was keen to manage the deployment themselves, however, they could see the benefits engaging Centiq’s consultants. Together they rolled out HANA with BW over six weeks, allowing more forward-thinking in Arco’s stock positioning. Arco now keeps stock in the supply chain to a minimum whilst avoid disappointing customers and has improved the speed with which it can draw conclusions from its supply chain data.

Mark Johnson, lead architect, Arco realised he had found a ‘safe pair of hands’ to architect the initial roll-out of HANA with BW and then later to deploy Supply Chain Management (SCM) functionality on HANA.

He said, “SAP HANA is a game-changer, it allows us to be more efficient in storing and analysing near real-time data, but we needed a trusted partner to implement it. Of all the partners Arco has ever engaged with, Centiq was the most professional. They listened and came back with the exact requirements we needed. They stood out from the crowd because they offered a level of service you would only expect from a true partner, not just a service provider.”

The SCM deployment has opened up personal development opportunities for Arco’s team. No longer a labour intensive task, thanks to the automation SCM has afforded the stockroom, they can now focus more on building relationships with customers and vendors ensuring the business continues to grow exactly as expected.

About Centiq

Centiq proactively manages complex in-memory enterprise systems unlocking HANA’s potential. Its Optiq Portal, developed over 120 real-world HANA projects, offers Data Ops best practices from concept through to business results. Centiq de-risks and optimises in-memory deployments for innovators who won’t settle for Business as Usual. Centiq gets the Job done.

About Arco

Arco is the UK’s leading safety company, distributing quality products and training and providing expert advice helping to shape the safety world and make work a safer place.

Founded in 1884 and with a heritage spanning four generations, Arco integrates traditional family values with pioneering innovation to offer a world-class range of over 170,000 quality assured, branded and own brand products, including personal protective equipment, clothing, footwear, gloves, workplace safety and hygiene products. Headquartered in Hull, Arco has been accredited a ‘One to Watch’ status in the Best Companies Times Top 100 Survey.