Mr. Ahmad M Almulla, Vice President Information Technology, Dubal, receiving the 2012 ACN Award
Reflecting its commitment to excellence and the strength of its leadership, Dubai Aluminium, DUBAL, the state-owned corporation that operates the world’s largest aluminium smelter using pre-bake anode technology, received two of the top honours at the 2012 Arabian Computer News, ACN, Arab Technology Awards. The annual ACN Awards, which recognise outstanding work carried out in the Middle East information technology, I.T., enterprise sector, are ranked among the most prestigious I.T. industry awards in the region. This year’s event, held on 15 October 2012, was attended by more than 300 leading technology professionals, thus providing a strong platform to honour the industry’s top performers.
DUBAL won the ACN Energy & Industry Implementation of the Year Award, in recognition of its successful Product Unit Costing, PUC, project, DUBAL’s third such award, having previously won the ACN Manufacturing Implementation of the Year Award in 2007 and the ACN Manufacturing and Construction Implementation of the Year Award in 2008. The in-house developed PUC solution uses SAP Process Integration technology to integrate complex production data from DUBAL’s Manufacturing Execution and Casthouse Management Systems with the company’s ERP system, SAP, on a near real-time basis. At the same time, native integration between the Production Planning, Materials Management and Finance modules in SAP allows online, automated reconciliation of operational quantity flows and cost accounting. The operational and cost data is then extracted from SAP to DUBAL’s Business Information Warehouse, where SAP Business Objects functionality is leveraged to present structured cost information in a flexible reporting output, including detailed period and trend analysis of the actual conversion cost, plan conversion cost and variances in the production of DUBAL’s finished product. Moreover, the costs and variances can be displayed in diverse combinations of key characteristics, such as alloy code, shape code, work centre, furnace and product hierarchy; and simulation options allow ‘what-if’ analysis of various scenarios.
The PUC solution has demonstrated business benefits and created value for the company. By eliminating manual inputs, for example, reliability and accuracy has improved. Being an automated process, the PUC solution generates selected report outputs almost immediately, compared to the previous fixed reports taking up to two days to prepare. The integration of the various data sources has also insured greater transparency and provided a standardised reporting platform that DUBAL can now roll-out to all production areas across the organisation.
In the individual category, Ahmad M Almulla, Vice President: Information Technology, received the ACN Chief Information Officer, CIO, of the Year Award for the excellence and leadership traits he demonstrates, the tangible business benefits he delivers to DUBAL, and his instrumental role in the formation of the Dubai Quality Group’s “The CIO Arabia Subgroup” – of which he is also the Chairman. Launched in 2011, The CIO Arabia Subgroup provides a forum for senior I.T. decision-makers to network, share knowledge and expertise, develop partnerships, and nurture a culture of learning and encourage organisational growth in the region through the efficient use of information technology. No stranger to the winner’s podium, Mr Almulla previously won the CIO20 ME Award in 2008 and 2010; the CIO Top 10 ME Award in 2009; and the CIO50 ME Award in 2011. Under his leadership, DUBAL has won the ACN mentioned above as well as the I.T. Governance Assurance Forum, ITGAF, Award in 2006 and 2008; the US-based Excellence in Information Integrity Awards, Gold, in 2008; the US-based Oracle BI / EPM Excellence Award in 2009; the CNME Editor’s Choice Award in 2010; the ACN I.T. Manager of the Year Award in 2010; and the Security Strategist Editor’s Choice Award for 2011.
Commenting on DUBAL’s success at this year’s ACN Awards, Abdulla Kalban, President & CEO, says with evident pride: “Our I.T. department plays a key role as a strategic partner and business enabler at DUBAL. The department contributes significantly to the optimisation of our company’s business processes by automating these processes, improving customer service and enhancing the quality of our products. The ACN Awards and other accolades presented to DUBAL are testament to the excellent standards achieved and sustained by the department, guided by the exceptional leadership of Mr Almulla and his core management team.”