The implementation of an enterprise-wide multi-site ERP solution in Hewlett Packard : a case study of the HP IPS global SAP R/3 implementation
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BA (Hons) in Business Information Management
Dublin Business School
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In 1997, due to increasing environmental and competitive pressures, Hewlett Packard's Imaging and Print Systems (IPS) business unit made the strategic decision to implement ERP to optimise its supply chain performance. IPS realised its processes contained significant redundancy and that by increasing functional integration they could increase the added value of the SBU to Hewlett Packard. Hewlett Packard's IPS Irish site saw the first SAP solution implemented in the division in 1998. The project was successful from both an implementation perspective (delivering the required functionality within the budgeted scope, schedule and resources) and from a return on investment perspective. Other implementations in the SBU followed based on the learning and methodology of the Irish implementation. In 2000, when two implementations had been successfully completed and one was in progress, a strategic change of direction was made. It was decided that instead of implementing a solution per site that a ‘Single-Instance’ of SAP would be developed for all sites. Using the HP IPS GW SAP implementation program as a case study, the implementation processes and benefits achieved in both the site focused ERP implementations and the single-instance implementation are examined, as are the drivers behind the change in strategy. The dissertation shows that, given the correct organisational context, an enterprise-wide multi-site ERP solution delivers a platform for competitive advantage. It also demonstrates that the level of advantage achieved using the Single-Instance platform is delivered more efficiently and effectively then by using a distributed ERP approach. The dissertation sought to identify how HP IPS used ERP technology to overcome obstacles to efficiency brought about by geographically distributed plants and are using technology to leverage their size and act as a single integrated organisation to gain competitive advantage and add value to the business. With the SAP Single-Instance, HP IPS have developed a business solution that gives the company an opportunity to maintain its position as the market leader in the global imaging and printing business. Contributing factors such as the HP culture, the development of core ERP skills in the organisation, a proven implementation and benefits management methodology and a strategy of developing organisational learning rather then use consultants have lead to this success. Across HP IPS, both the high volume manufacturing sites and its R&D facilities, material visibility is global, not only of materials on-site but also in transit and within its contract –manufacturing partners. The system is now being used as a platform for supply chain optimisation. Activities such as collaborative planning and data warehousing have been launched, many of which ‘would have been far more expensive, difficult to maintain, and in some cases impossible to deliver without the SAP Single-Instance’ according to Kevin Hediger, the IPS Supply Chain IT Manager.