The Akshaya Patra Foundation moves to Private Cloud (IAAS) with Microsoft Dynamics AX
We were looking at a more experienced partner with the domain and customisation knowledge, who could not only re-architect our solution but also complete the future phases of implementation. I must say that sa.global team is surely a dedicated team of highly skilled Microsoft Dynamics AX professionals who worked side by side with us to solve all our issues and made Microsoft Dynamics AX a more effective tool to use.
Vijay Kumar, IT Head at The Akshaya Patra Foundation
SituationThe Akshaya Patra foundation is a not-for-profit organization based out of Bengaluru. Today, it works with central and state governments in 11 states to provide midday meals to 1.6 million children in 13,210 government and government-aided schools each day. They require instant insight into their supply chain for accurate planning and management.
To ease operational issues and consolidate data for useful planning, inventory and management, Akshaya Patra started implementing Microsoft Dynamics AX 2009 through a Microsoft partner. While the initial roll-out of finance module across almost 19 locations throughout India was successful, it was while expanding the scope of the project that it was realised that the architecting of the solution as it had been implemented wouldn’t address the key issue of centralised data management and, easier & faster data access.
SolutionAkshaya Patra believes in using smart technologies for faster and optimal outputs. Though the Microsoft partner successfully implemented the financial modules, Akshaya Patra management sensed the need of a more experienced partner who could re-architect the solution and implement the future phases to meet their requirements better.
“We were looking at a more experienced partner with the domain and customisation knowledge, who could not only re-architect our solution but also complete the future phases of implementation” said Vijay Kumar, IT Head at The Akshaya Patra Foundation. Akshaya Patra chose sa.global over others for its dedicated association with Microsoft for many years and years of experience in proving customised solutions around Dynamics AX. “I must say that sa.gobal team is surely a dedicated team of highly skilled Microsoft Dynamics AX professionals who worked side by side with us to solve all our issues and made Microsoft Dynamics AX a more effective tool to use” continued Vijay.
sa.global came in and re-architected the solution design. They created a module specifically to meet the requirements of a not-for-profit organization and the midday meal program. To further reduce the burden and automate tasks, sa.global also included integration with emails to automate email alerts and reminders.
Solution Architectsa.global did a complete audit of the existing Dynamics AX solution to understand the gaps. They re-architected the solution design after getting in-depth understanding of all the issues being faced by Akshaya Patra management and AX users. “Getting the complete understanding of our current situation as well as to understand our future plans and issues was very important before taking any steps. sa.global consultants had a strategic approach which helped in architecting the solution and setups to better support our business, not just for today, but for the future as well” added Vijay.
Moving to Cloud (IAAS)Akshaya Patra were facing inconsistency issues with their servers in the data centre. Consistent connectivity, server maintenance and data security where few of the issues of concern. sa.globalsuggested and moved Akshaya Patra’s on-premises data onto a private cloud [IAAS]. This drastic move addressed the issues of consolidating the organization’s data and having a centralised approach. This not only addressed the consistency and security issues but also increased data reliability of applications to 99.95%, helped then achieve proper backup of the data and document disaster recovery plans. The operational issues of accessing the data at 26 locations across 11 states was now made possible.
Customised solution for accurate dataTo address the key requirement of better planning through deep and timely insight into data across the organisation, sa.global provided a global reporting solution to Akshaya Patra. This solution integrates AX, SharePoint and SQL Server reporting services.
The global reporting solution pulls in data across all the AX and non-AX systems from departments like administration, operations, finance, MIS, HR & payroll etc. and provides a consolidated view across the entire company. Management dashboards were designed to keep track of key performance indicators and make it easy to make decisions.
The solution made it easy to operate across locations by standardising processes, providing visibility cross organisation and helping simplify compliance.
Centralised data for global accessAccessing consolidated data from anywhere, anytime to derive useful information is the key to any business and for Akshaya Patra it was achieved by moving the data to the private cloud [IAAS]. “Data transformation, data security and data sharing issues were addressed by moving our data to private cloud. The ease of accessing the data from anywhere, anytime made us feel like a single unit rather than a federation of different kitchens” said Lalitha B, Manager-ERP at The Akshaya Patra Foundation
Lalitha explains with an example, “Earlier, the distribution required 35 persons working for four hours a day to smoothly manage the kitchen and delivery schedules. With Dynamics AX, this is taken care of with the help of four persons working for four hours.”
Customised MISAccurate real-time insight into inventory management, right time availability of materials etc. helps the management in planning the production and procurement. Management dashboards allows them to monitor and plan all of these and more for the future.
Ease of adaptabilityMicrosoft Dynamics AX is a comprehensive enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution that empowers people to quickly adapt the new technology, work effectively and manage the change efficiently. Familiar, easy-to-use tools and access to role-tailored information and tasks enable people to work quickly and make smart, proactive decisions. Akshaya Patra has educated its employees on the use of technology. Dynamics AX is user friendly and easy enough to be used by non-tech-savvy users, which helped employees across all branches adapt the new technology quickly
“Data transformation, data security and data sharing issues were addressed by moving our data to cloud. The ease of accessing the data from anywhere, anytime made us feel like a single unit rather than a federation of different kitchens.”Lalitha B, Manager-ERP at The Akshaya Patra Foundation