Electro Terminal made the strategic decision to replace its ECC 6.0 SAP system and use S/4HANA® as a basis to work towards building an ERP platform for the future. With the conversion to SAP/HANA®, Electro Terminal can now benefit from greater agility and accelerated production. The IT supports the construction of new product lines so that production can begin quickly and therefore serve the customer more efficiently. This provides a better user experience during product planning and processes become smoother. At the same time, production planners are able to compare production capacity and the status of orders in real time. The status and capacities of the machines are available round the clock.
With the transfer to S/4HANA®, Electro Terminal saves on separate SAP components for a business warehouse. Instead, this is now integrated into the existing HANA® installation. Now the Tirol-based company also has SAP CRM® within the digital core of S/4HANA® – without needing to introduce C/4HANA®. This is an additional effect of synergy that the new platform brings with it.
SAP Fiori® is also already showing its benefits: with the external partner in Romania, shared orders can now be coordinated more effectively. Order status and production progress information is available for both sides in real time. In line with this, work processes can be planned and coordinated simultaneously. The SAP Fiori® functionality is also beneficial regarding the introduction of the CRM system, allowing sales partners and representatives to gain access, which in turn optimizes international collaboration.
The best part is that the full scope of possibilities has not yet been realized. Leo Guggenberger, IT Coordinator for Electro Terminal summarizes: "We are excited to see what ideas we can use to further develop our business. With the new HANA® platform we are well prepared for this in terms of IT."
With short routes and close collaboration, we were also able to quickly resolve common challenges in IT projects of this kind, so that we could ultimately celebrate a seamless migration project.
Leo Guggenberger, IT-Coordinator Electro Terminal
"Our existing SAP system offered all functionalities that we currently need for our highly automated production processes," explains Leo Guggenberger. But the foreseeable termination of R/3 support as well as expanded possibilities brought Electro Terminal to the decision to convert to S/4HANA® now, to better manage the technological leap. The decision in favor of a modern SAP could therefore be considered a strategic investment in the future. "In the next few months and years, we are planning to introduce more new functions for our company and see the HANA® platform as the right basis for this," comments the IT coordinator regarding the decision.
And in this way, the SAP strategy aligns with the company strategy, as innovation is one of Electro Terminal's core values. "We differentiate ourselves in a competitive market with specific solutions for our customers," says Guggenberger. The company is characterized by its large quantity of new products. And the company wants to maintain that technological edge to uphold their prevalence in their market. But new products also mean new production lines that need to be established. And speed is a decisive factor for this, which depends on the SAP systems – these are closely connected with the manufacturing execution systems (MES) in highly automated and paperless production processes. Electro Terminal also wants to use SAP to optimize collaboration with international partners.
Following a successful proof of concept, Electro Terminal decided to convert to S/4HANA® in spring 2019. It took six months from the decision to the launch of the conversion. The downtime phase of the production system in the T-Systems computer center in Vienna lasted only a few hours. This demonstrated the strengths of the dynamic platform. "For a quick transfer of data and processes, we used additional resources to reduce the downtime," explains Martin Heinke-Sokol, who managed the project on T-Systems' end. As IT is always intensively vertically integrated with operational technology (OT).
Users of the SAP system didn't notice the migration on the following Monday. They simply got to work as normal. With the introduction of S/4HANA®, Electro Terminal also introduced SAP Fiori®. Through SAP Fiori®, the first external partner can already gain access to processes without needing their own SAP system.
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