Secrets of Successful SAP Integrations: Mergers & Acquisitions

Authors : S V Prasad Gandhikota

Volume/Issue : Volume 7 - 2022, Issue 6 - June

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The purpose of writing this paper is to provide insights of successful SAP integrations as part of mergers and acquisitions journey of the companies. Problem: Companies allocate substantial budgets for SAP integration projects running in to millions of US $ and if these projects are not executed with a very structured and proven methodologies then it will have a significant downstream impacts not just to the dollars spent but a more significant impact to the overall supply chain strategy and companies will lose heavily on customer satisfaction levels and service level agreements set for supply chain metrics like on time and in full, Inventory turns, Fill rates, Inventory days of supply, Customer service, Inventory to Sales Ratio, Total replenishment lead times, Inventory carrying cost , back order rate etc. With enterprise resource planning (ERP) at the heart of the many organizations operations failures of software roll outs can lead to shareholder dissatisfactions due to crashing stock values and financial meltdowns. Based on research by CIO in 2015 just 58 percent of organizations rated their latest project a success, while by 2019 that figure had risen to 88 percent. According to an article published in Bright Pearl Revlon brand was sued by its own shareholders for a failed ERP SAP S/4 HANA project. When Revlon acquired Elizabeth Arden Inc. in 2018 and signed up for SAP S/4 HANA for to merge the operations of both the companies the results are disastrous costing the brand a $ 64 Million in sales losses. Revlon claimed that SAP S/4 HANA software was not mature enough for such a largescale integration. Methods: Methods used to address the research problem are proven methodologies of SAP integrations gained by experience of doing these kinds of complex integrations again and again and getting the things right first time by following a proven, very structured, and disciplined approach are discussed in detail. Conclusions reached: It requires lot of experience to execute these projects and there is a need to make quick decisions in each phase of the project. To be successful you need to have flawless execution skills in addition to a good strategy. There is a need to apply flawless execution skills in each phase of the project right from project initiation & planning, resource planning and allocation, Business process discoveries, Design/Build, Configurations and Customizations in realization phase, cut over planning, Final project preparation as part of Go Live and stabilizations. The strategies, challenges and best practice approaches are discussed in detail to conclude that we can make these complex integrations successful again and again if we follow these proven methodologiesand have an attitude of refuse to lose. Significance: The significance of this research project is very high as many things are at stake, to name a few high investments running in to multimillion US $, supply chain risks not able to fulfill set targets in terms of metrics, loss of trust in the organization etc. These projects are highly significant because of the visibility of senior leadership teams as they are discussed in town hall meetings on regular basis.

Keywords : SAP (Systems, Applications and Products in data processing), Supply Chain Heavy Integrations, Mergers & Acquisitions, Food Industry Global Supply Chains.


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31 - March - 2024

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