Shepherd Neame is a family controlled brewer based in Kent since 1698, producing widely acknowledged premium ales including ‘Spitfire’ and ‘Bishops Finger’. They own and operate around 360 high quality managed and tenanted pubs and hotels throughout the South East of England.

The Challenge

Shepherd Neame needed to improve the speed, quality and accessibility of their sales analytics and reporting information for the key stakeholders in the trade sales team. In addition, this project was seen as a pilot to determine whether improved information could be delivered to other areas of the business using the same solution.

The Solution

Having made a significant investment in its SAP ERP system but finding its reporting limited and time consuming, Shepherd Neame embarked on a tender process to identify a suitable Business Intelligence solution. After evaluating five solutions, QlikView was selected and a Business Intelligence strategy was agreed:

  • Provide regular static reports via SQL Server Reporting Services, and
  • Business Intelligence via QlikView for fast access to meaningful information through its intuitive interface and drill down capability.

According to Kevan Griffin, Head of IT, Shepherd Neame chose QlikView partner Tahola “because they demonstrated that they really understand hospitality and quickly got to grips with our business. The pilot system they developed very closely met our requirements.”

Following a successful proof of concept, Shepherd Neame quickly rolled out the Sales Analysis dashboard to over 70 users  including directors, senior managers and account managers across sales, finance, marketing and production.

“This has been particularly well received by non-finance users,” says Peter Gillespie, MI & Data Manager. “They now have easy access to the information they need to make the best possible

decisions for the business. We continue to improve and evolve our dashboard based on feedback from the users.”

Shepherd Neame now have many ways of slicing and dicing their sales volumes and margins. There are over 20 product and customer-related characteristics that can be used for analysis, drill down and reporting within QlikView, including customer, product, brand and account manager. Actual sales by any week, month or year vs budget or vs last year is just a few clicks away within QlikView.

“Our decision makers can now spend more time analysing information rather than capturing it—which alone certainly  saves us time and money,” continues Gillespie. “They are now using QlikView on a daily basis because it gives them timely, easy-to-access, intuitive information with far greater transparency. Ours users can rank information by any value or dimension.

An Account Manager, for example, can quickly rank his top 10 customers or top 10 products. He can see which customers may be spending less than they did last year. This transparency  means our managers are better informed and able to respond quickly, making better decisions for the business. Also, many of them have remote access, enabling them to get at the information they need, wherever and whenever they need it.”

QlikView has provided Shepherd Neame with the ability to quickly visualise and trend their data thereby complementing their existing suite of static sales reports. “A small investment in QlikView has proved to be a key element in us realising a return on our significant investment in our SAP ERP system,” says Gillespie. “We also expect to see further benefits across our business as we roll out QlikView into other areas including production, finance and across our retail and tenanted estate.”

The Result

  • Timely/easy access to data with greater transparency
  • More  time  for  analysis  rather  than data capture, saving time and money
  • Helped realise return on investment in existing systems
  • Improved reporting to customers and suppliers
  • Visualisation/trending of data.


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