UUM gears into Analytics with SAS

SAS - The Power to Know

KUALA LUMPUR, 13 November 2007 – Universiti Utara Malaysia (UUM) today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with SAS Malaysia in collaboration for a SAS Business Intelligence Competency Centre (BICC) at the university’s premise.

UUM through its own company, R&D SerindIT Com UUM Sdn. Bhd., is the first university in Malaysia to embark on the setting up of a BICC, which promotes and supports the effective use of Business Intelligence (BI) across the university. The establishment of the SAS BICC centre on UUM’s grounds is part of the university’s strive to become a centre of excellence for management.

The Business Intelligence Competency Centre, or BICC, is a permanent and formal organisational structure, akin to an advisory panel or a user group that oversees the overall BI strategy within an organisation.

Of the driving factors behind UUM’s BICC initiative, R&D SerindIT Com UUM Sdn. Bhd. Chairman, Dato’ Khalid bin Ahmad says, “We decided to integrate a BICC into UUM’s initiative for analytics in order to centralise our efforts to facilitate better BI best practices and knowledge transfer within the organisation.”

“The set up of a BICC will not only help us pool our resources, skills and knowledge to gain a higher level of ROI from our investments in advanced analytics, but also enables us to channel the BI knowledge we have into consultations and research work for ministries, agencies and organisations seeking for BI information,” he adds.

UUM has been licensing the SAS Software since 1989. SAS was chosen as it provided the necessary curriculum development and course consulting that was essential to UUM.

“Having worked so well with SAS for the last 18 years, it’s only natural to embark on the setting up of a SAS BICC in UUM. Furthermore they are the only vendor that can provide the platform, solutions, strategy and execution,” says Vice Chancellor of Universiti Utara Malaysia, Yang Bhg Tan Sri Dr Nordin Kardi.

Steven Ing, Professional Services Director, SAS Asia Pacific, shares the relevance of BICC in the expanding BI market, “BI tools are fast becoming the top investment priorities for corporations as it facilitates competitive-edge analysis, query, corporate performance management and reporting business performance information. But the inability to integrate IT with the company’s core business eventually leads to the downfall of their investment.”

“BICC helps organisations identify its objectives, areas of concern, and the required role of each member to develop a user-centric management plan. SAS BICC provides a unique approach that combines the four critical elements for the success of BI deployment: Infrastructure, Knowledge Processes, Culture and Human Capital,” he says.

“SAS BICC has helped various organisations worldwide turn their data into actionable knowledge. It acts as a bridge between IT and businesses by helping ensure IT investments (in BI) reaps its full potential for the business.”

Use of Analytics at UUM

BI has been part of UUM’s syllabus for some time now. Many courses in UUM under the Faculty of Quantitative Sciences, Faculty of Information Technology and Faculty of Accounting are currently using SAS software such as the SAS Data Mining and Data Analysis solutions which allow users to explore and exploit corporate data for strategic business advantage.

Students and lectures alike have benefited from the use of the analytical software to gain valuable insights from real-life datasets. At the same time, researchers at UUM work together with SAS in analytic research as well as management consultation work (provided by UUM) in the field of analytics.

“There is no doubt that UUM has adopted BI as an integral part of the university’s academia operations. The setting up of BICC in UUM will definitely help drive our aim to proliferate the usage of BI in the most optimal manner, as part of our contribution to the nation’s thrust towards generating a reliable pool of knowledge workforce,” ends Tan Sri Dr. Nordin Kardi.