3 key drivers of Booking.com’s financial innovation

Large information and connected generation are remodeling the way in which companies method information research. Whilst the sheer quantity of information from its disparate resources have made information research and the method of extracting insights a difficult activity for companies, there are a couple of data-driven corporations that can provide us inspiration and route.

Reserving.com has all the time been at the leading edge of generation. Owned and operated through the Priceline Team, Reserving.com is the sector chief in reserving lodging on-line; it’s estimated that every day, over 1.2 million rooms are reserved by means of the corporate’s site, and because of this, the corporate collects and analyzes large quantities of information day by day.

See additionally: What open APIs will imply for the way forward for cellular bills

To get an perception into Reserving.com’s finance-related information dealing with practices and the applied sciences and gear that it makes use of, I interviewed Venkat Iyer, the director of economic programs for Reserving.com, at SAP Netherlands’ fresh S/4HANA Adoption Discussion board.


Virtually each corporate on the net has skilled large expansion within the quantity of information generated through quite a lot of channels, and Reserving.com was once no exception. Iyer defined that there was once a time once they have been questioning what would occur in the event that they doubled the quantity of houses on their site within the subsequent 3 years and the way the finance back-office would take care of this expansion. They analyzed that the funding in additional hardware on my own would no longer remedy the issue.

A complete analysis made them understand that to enhance the expanding quantity of information, they are going to require large scalability, which was once no longer possible at the current ERP platform. It changed into very important for them to put money into a brand new answer, however this was once dangerous as smartly. They didn’t wish to bottleneck the trade and hinder finance trade enhance purposes. So, Iyer, together with his crew, made up our minds that exploring new alternatives was once the one answer.

Reserving.com evaluated the professionals and cons of SAP’s S/4HANA answer and made up our minds that this was once the answer that might power velocity, scalability, and innovation, and enhance the way in which other folks paintings.

This actual choice is somewhat inspirational for marketers and leaders who’re frequently required to take tricky selections in difficult instances. Once I requested Iyer about what in reality made him take this chance, he stated, “We have now a duty to dream and comprehend it, as a result of if we don’t, we don’t transfer ahead.”

Drawing near demanding situations in a extra a laugh method

With the exception of technical main points, I consider that it’s necessary to proportion the “exact” revel in that Iyer and his crew had all through the preliminary HANA implementation. For the reason that deployment of HANA entailed important chance, Reserving.com selected to provide themselves four months to put into effect and to move reside an afternoon ahead of a Dutch nationwide public vacation. The reason was once if one thing went fallacious, the corporate had a minimum of another day to get better from the issue.

“You’ll’t put into effect tasks like those in the event you don’t have a large number of a laugh when you are doing it,” he stated. “And you have got to accept as true with every different.”

three key drivers for luck

Once I requested Iyer concerning the 3 number one causes at the back of a a hit implementation, his quick reaction was once that there have been many drivers. There are a large number of issues that went proper. Along with teamwork, one main explanation why the verdict to put money into a brand new answer proved to be a strategically sound choice for Reserving.com was once that it facilitated complete monetary trade involvement. The corporate labored in collaboration with the answer supplier during the method and their steady involvement contributed so much to the overall consequence.

When Reserving.com invested on this new answer, they have been issues that they knew they might do with it. And alternatively, there have been issues that they didn’t realize it may do, and that proved to be very thrilling. Iyer and his crew experimented and innovated new techniques of doing on a regular basis duties in a extra environment friendly way. This talent to innovate served as a motive force for each serve as of the finance group in all conceivable instructions.

“The truth that you have no idea what you’ll do with one thing is essentially the most thrilling factor within the adventure of innovation,” stated Iyer. “Don’t be discouraged through failure. It could possibly lead you in new instructions.”

In only one sentence, Iyer completely summarized the method he followed when he was once met with demanding situations and constraints all through his innovation adventure. As I’ve discussed previous, each choice includes its personal dangers, and Reserving.com’s funding choice was once no exception.

There have been a number of demanding situations that the corporate confronted all through the migration procedure. A few of these come with:

  • There was once an enormous quantity of unclean, unstructured legacy information that was once a ache to take care of all through the migration procedure.
  • There was once little room for error all through migration as it will ward off scalability plans through a number of months.
  • The corporate skilled an inconsistent migration revel in. Probably the most migration steps that the crew had run effectively more than one instances, failed all through the deployment, and for 6 hours, they’d no answer.


Iyer made an enchanting selection ahead of he made the verdict. He arranged a design pondering workshop that was once facilitated through SAP and 3 finance groups from Reserving.com. There have been two topics that emerged all through the discussions:

  1. Other people weren’t keen to attend. They sought after the entirety in real-time as a result of they lived on the earth of now.
  2. When other folks have invested in generation and notice its chances, they begin to re-imagine the longer term and now not really feel constrained through the issues that occur.

Whilst the second one theme was once the main reason why the contributors of the workshop requested the correct questions, dug deeper, and spoke freely with out judgment, the primary theme directed to a better factor. It helped the corporate understand that in the event that they gave a greater person revel in for workers and equipped them simple get admission to to information they might essentially alternate the way in which they paintings and feature a much wider trade have an effect on.


Past a database, alternative

Iyer and his crew didn’t see S/4HANA as an insignificant database. As an alternative, they perceived it as a platform for innovation, a chance to switch the way in which the finance groups paintings at Reserving.com. For them, the implementation was once no longer with reference to using velocity and innovation and making improvements to the analytics abilities of the group of workers, it was once about serving to them perceive the price of information and become a key motive force for choice making.

Any other factor that Iyer interested in was once making the finance operation extra agile and user-friendly. The corporate’s site presented an agile and extremely responsive revel in to the customers, letting them alternate their selections as speedy as they sought after. Alternatively, the finance purposes didn’t have that luxurious. They learned that making finance operations more effective and extra agile constituted a chance for them. Due to this fact, they aimed for a constant, user-friendly revel in during the price chain, and so they accomplished it thru meticulous preparation, constant checking out, and a a hit migration.

When somebody is confronted with a reputedly insurmountable problem, their perspective issues so much. When confronted with the problem of a a hit implementation of S/4HANA, Iyer requested himself “Are there different alternatives that we’re lacking? Why are we all the time taking a look at it from the perspective of what drawback are we able to remedy? Why don’t we have a look at it from the perspective of what alternatives are in the market that we will exploit?”

Drawing near issues from a favorable attitude equipped the crew a brand new route. They learned that Reserving.com’s restricted wisdom was once a constraint for the implementation. However additionally they knew that with SAP’s enhance and in-depth experience of the answer, they might unravel the problem and succeed in their final function.

“You aren’t operating by yourself,” he stated. “And for us, we were given a large number of enhance. I should admit we wouldn’t have been in a position to do it if we didn’t have the collaboration [from SAP] at this day and age.”

The use of information to expect monetary dangers

In keeping with Iyer, the basis of the HANA database could be very important in relation to gathering information from other resources with the aim of producing insights. Alternatively, you want to watch out about the type of information resources you herald as a result of an answer has the infrastructure to enhance it, however with time, it should grow to be too expensive to take care of all this knowledge and generate one thing precious from it.

To summarize, your talent to reach a excessive go back to your database funding is determined by:

  • A self-managed surroundings that’s in a position to scale
  • A high-skilled, dependable interior crew
  • Bringing the correct form of information resources
  • Dealing with the drift of information

Reserving.com has all the time been a data-driven corporate, however making an investment in S/4HANA equipped the finance purposes a chance to take a look at information in an absolutely other method. Iyer and his crew used the technique to innovate with analytics and system studying. They migrated datasets from a number of resources to the brand new database, and the information research assist them acquire a greater figuring out of economic dangers and equipped actionable insights to their other folks on the proper time.

Get started small and accept as true with your crew

I understand that a lot of my readers are desiring to be an entrepreneur or are in a position to power alternate within the organizations they paintings for. Due to this fact, I requested Iyer to offer his recommendation to people who find themselves in a equivalent state of affairs and are required to make an ordinary choice.

“Get started very small. Select one little use case, get started from there,” he stated. “If it doesn’t paintings, you’ll know. But when it really works, you might be giving your corporate a great alternative to march into the longer term.”

The company international lately is pushed through generation, and the finance serve as of a trade isn’t any exception. With knowledge of every kind, structured and unstructured, being generated from a spectrum of assets, the long-term monetary luck of an organization relies very much on its talent to seize information, analyze it, and take quick and correct selections at the foundation of insights extracted from information research. To satisfy this wishes and expectancies, companies are required to put money into refined gear that may enhance the information analytics wishes in their monetary serve as and assist them thrive in lately’s generation pushed international.

“The actual worth of information turns into obvious while you mix it with the information of your other folks and the ability of generation to make data-driven selections,” stated Iyer.

If you want to learn extra from Ronald van Loon at the chances of Large Knowledge please click on “Apply” and fasten on LinkedIn and Twitter.

Ronald van Loon

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