Case studies

Time-driven activity based management in IBM Cognos TM1

TM1 implementation in a multinational footwear company


The client is an American multinational corporation that is engaged in the design, development and worldwide marketing and selling of footwear, apparel, equipment, accessories and services, with an EMEA logistics hub located in Belgium. The site employs 1600-2500 labourers.

To enable sustainable growth, optimize plant throughput, and improve decision making on the operational, tactical and strategic level, management needs insight in the budgeted and forecasted productivity, compared to the actual achieved productivity, with respect to the different warehouses, areas and individual tasks performed.

With a main focus on Finance and on supporting and improving the process by eliminating the unmanageable Excel files and implementing a dedicated solution,  the project also aimed at involving the different warehouse and area managers to obtain a clear operation buy-in and valuable inputs in redefining the setup.


Through a set of analysis and design workshops, involving both finance and operational stakeholders, we were able to tackle following topics:

  • Definition of all the operational processes, tasks and flows, and a harmonization and mapping across all 4 sites of the ELC, where possible
  • Definition of activity dictionary; reconciliation and classification of activities and performance metrics; definition of practical capacity based on theoretical capacity
  • Implementation of a conceptual Time Driven Activity Based Management model (TD-ABM) in IBM Cognos TM1
  • Integration of the TD-ABM model with different warehouse management systems, to obtain key inputs and actual figures
  • Change management and support in the transition towards a new model and potentially new approaches and ways of working


Through the implementation of IBM Cognos TM1 as supporting technology, replacing the set of de-centralized and overengineered Excel-files, the outcome of this project was a centralized Warehouse Performance Management system, with:

  • Access to all involved stakeholders (finance and operations), with specific responsibilities and access rights depending on the profile
  • An automated derivation of area and warehouse productivity and associated costs, based on the input of key performance indicators, volume estimations and general parameters
  • A detailed comparison between actual and budgeted / forecasted productivity and cost, to monitor and dynamically adjust where needed
  • A set of Excel-based web-templates & -reports facilitating the input of key drivers and parameters, and the analysis of the performance at different angles of the model
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