Air Astana is the flag carrier of Kazakhstan and operates both domestic and international services across 64 routes in Eurasia. The company strives for the highest safety and customer service standards for both external and internal processes. To obtain timely financial reports, the company leveraged the power of Microsoft Azure Synapse Analytics together with Microsoft Power BI. Now, reports are generated within seconds instead of hours, boosting the team’s productivity and efficiency.
As the leading airline in Kazakhstan, Air Astana must maintain its finances and accountancy impeccably. Previously, month-end closing consumed a lot of resources and created bottlenecks for the finance department. Generating account cards and trial balances took from 40 minutes to more than one hour per report. At the end of the month, the team often had hundreds of reports in the queue. With the Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system’s processing capacity capped at only ten reports at a time, it was time for a change.
Trusting the cloud
“We had one requirement, to generate reports in less than one minute,” begins Roman Bogdashkin, Director, Enterprise Applications and eBusiness at Air Astana. “When I saw a presentation about Azure Synapse Analytics at a conference, I asked our partner, Cloud Services, to see if we could use it to optimize our reporting. They said it could and helped us to launch a trial. After two months of piloting, we saw significant results. Now, report generation takes only 30-40 seconds, sometimes they appear immediately.” Because of this improvement, the company decided to move to production and use Azure Synapse Analytics for daily operations.
No more wasted time
Now that the company’s ERP system is not burdened by producing time-consuming reports, its performance has increased. Month-end closing has sped up as well by at least 5-8 hours. The team of around 100 people no longer wastes time waiting for reports for hours and can concentrate on other productive tasks. Air Astana can now start creating analytics and forecasts based on the data coming from Azure Synapse and visualizing them with Power BI.
“We wanted to visualize our data in dashboards with specific filters,” explains Mr. Bogdashkin. “We deployed Microsoft Power BI and Azure Synapse Analytics and easily configured it to our requirements. The overall management is also quite straightforward.” The finance department soon preferred to use the new dashboards. After two months, Air Astana stopped processing heavy reports in the ERP system and switched over to Azure Synapse Analytics and Power BI for reporting.
“Now that we freed up our resources and have this scalable parallel processing tool, we can finally do more things,” states Mr. Bogdashkin.
We had one requirement: to generate reports in less than one minute instead of one hour. With Azure Synapse Analytics, that goal was reached.
Roman Bogdashkin: Director Enterprise Applications and eBusiness, Air Astana