Integrated Display: Executives at Christie sharpen their business visibility with an integrated enterprise solution.
by Fred Sandsmark
When creating a perfectly sharp image is your business, anything that blurs the picture is a distraction. At Christie—the only single-source provider of digital cinema projection equipment in North America, and one of only a few in the world—Oracle’s JD Edwards EnterpriseOne solutions bring transactional operations into crisp focus.
The modern iteration of Christie, formed in 1999, is the result of the merger of a mechanical film projector maker and an electronic projector pioneer. Today, Christie designs and manufactures high-performance digital cinema projectors and other visual display solutions, including flat panels, virtual reality displays, and medical equipment.
Employees worked with multiple enterprise resource planning solutions until 2004, when management elected to consolidate operations onto JD Edwards applications and, later, to upgrade to JD Edwards EnterpriseOne, which pervades the 1,500-employee company today.
“Most of our organization that lives in a transactional world—finance, distribution, sales, procurement, manufacturing—uses JD Edwards every day,” explains Jason Perry, Christie’s director of global IT applications. “If we’re creating or moving or buying or selling inventory, or creating a service call or a return merchandise authorization—all of these key processes are controlled by JD Edwards.”
But until recently, Christie’s operations in Europe weren’t consolidated; inventory resided in small sales offices, and staff spent too much time and money transferring inventory and computing taxes and tariffs. In 2010 a third-party logistics (3PL) company, Kintetsu World Express (KWE), was hired to manage Christie’s inventory throughout Europe, and Oracle Platinum Partner SYSTIME, a KPIT Cummins company, was engaged to integrate KWE’s systems with JD Edwards solutions at Christie.
Customer service, sales order, and inventory information all come from JD Edwards in real time.
“It was very clear that users at Christie should not have to do anything different when talking to the 3PL than when they talked to their own warehouses,” recalls Ravi Reddy, technical architect with KPIT. Reddy and KPIT’s Oracle Fusion Middleware expert, Mangesh Umbrajkar, presented Perry with three options: a custom solution, integration using a Microsoft solution, or integration based on service-oriented architecture (SOA) using Oracle B2B solutions. Perry chose SOA-based Oracle B2B integration—called SYSTIME 3PL—to provide real-time integration between Christie and 3PL companies.
Choosing SOA-based integration makes expansion of the logistics system straightforward, as evidenced when KWE took on some of Christie’s logistics in Asia and North America. “As we added more branch offices or distribution centers, it’s been literally a cut-and-paste of the original implementation,” Perry says.
Even as logistics evolves at Christie, JD Edwards EnterpriseOne solutions remain the focus. “The more systems you have, the more difficult it becomes to manage,” Perry says. “That’s why we wanted to keep it all in JD Edwards as much as we could.” He adds that Christie management is “very pleased” with JD Edwards solutions, especially when it comes to financial reporting.
“Because all of our offices around the world use JD Edwards, financial consolidation becomes much simpler,” Perry says. “And with our 3PL implementation, customer service, sales order, and inventory information all come from JD Edwards in real time.” And in perfect focus.
Fred Sandsmark is a regular contributor to Profit.