Successful ERP rollouts with mergers and company takeovers for considerably more transparency and less complexity
The current telecommunications market is dominated by mergers and takeovers. In addition to that, overlapping business processes between different companies and organizations need to be adapted or extended in a very short amount of time. “Drei”, – cell phone brand of the Asian conglomerate CK Hutchison Holding with headquarters in Hong Kong –, is one of the fastest growing companies on the current European telecommunications market. Over the recent years, “Drei” has successfully acquired and merged various European companies. Furthermore, company-spanning processes have undergone numerous adjustments, for instance due to the change of logistic partners in the supply chain. The consolidation of potentially divergent business processes as well as the amalgamation of various implementations with differing system components pose considerable challenges to mergers. Changes within organization-spanning processes have to be managed with a particular focus on modifications of integrative system components, technical detail processes, applied technologies, and even, to some extent, organizational business processes in ongoing operations. „3Group Europe” follows in the principle of a so-called Global Single Instance (GSI) that is a centralized ERP system based on the Oracle E-Business Suite with consolidated business processes for every connected operative national company.
For the management and expansion of this complex overall solution, “Drei” developed a general approach on the implementation of relevant GSI-based projects in cooperation with PROMATIS. In order to master such demanding tasks in the time available, predefined process structures play a central role. Relevant process structures are being applied to both the consolidation of processes from different telecommunication companies as well as the corporate designing of organization-spanning business processes. Not only the integration on business process levels, but particularly the technical integration of required systems is being examined. The challenge was to effectively use the knowledge and experience of all included parties in a short amount of time in order to be able to build or change relevant process consolidations or overlapping processes. To do so, it is necessary to support collaborative working from the requirement specification up to the application of new processes and the commissioning of the according software components. Projects for the implementation of organization-spanning business processes run by “Drei” are always based on predefined reference processes. The basic idea of these reference process models is a description of business processes (procurement process, order process), business objects (order, contract, product etc.), functions (order entry, purchase approval etc.) und their relations to each other. This way, the possibilities of implementing business processes with existing GSI system components can be visualized and conveyed.
In the projects, analysis, design and implementation were carried out in a collaborative environment supported by Web 2.0 functions. The Horus Business Modeler was used for editing project-related aspects (processes, functions and data models); the Horus Knowledge Bases supplied predefined process knowledge, and the Horus Private Community provided a platform for collaboration. Furthermore, a test management on the basis of HP Quality Center was integrated to generate half-automatic test cases based on business transactions in the reference processes. Using this approach and the provided platform, several ERP rollouts have already been performed successfully.
“With the integrated PROMATIS environment, which combines process knowledge with technical knowledge and integrates test management on top, we can efficiently run projects on the basis of our global solution,” says Martin Blauensteiner, Head of ERP of Hutchison Drei Austria GmbH.
The combined use of a business process repository with a predefined process – and function documentation, collaboration functions and an integrated test management environment provides the necessary fundament to succeed in complex projects regarding mergers and extensive ERP rollouts – like they take place in the telecommunicative environment. In only a short amount of time, the knowledge of all involved parties could be gathered and documented in order to meet the right design decisions for the implementation. Most importantly, the collaborative creation of a coherent knowledge network consisting of business process models, application knowledge, technical detail courses and test cases enabled an easy handling of a global ERP solution on the basis of the Oracle E-Business Suite.