Achieve business process harmonization
How often have we seen large global organizations end up with complex, non-standard and inflexible business processes that are limited by underlying IT systems? This situation is the result of catering to diverse needs of regional or local businesses spread across multiple lines of business and spanning time zones and cultures. It becomes more complex when mergers and acquisitions are an integral part of the business strategy. CEOs try to create organizations capable of adapting to changing markets. They aim for increased speed of innovation for customer acquisition / retention. CEOs want to be closer to their business partners and leverage their global assets and talent pool in a seamless manner. Businesses are demanding a flexible and agile IT landscape aligned with the rapid and continuous changes brought about by globalization. Increasingly, having the right information at the right time across the extended value chain is helping organizations be more competitive, innovate faster and increase operational efficiency.
The challenge, therefore, is to define business processes that represent an appropriate level of commonality across business units, product lines and regions. Subsequently, the SAP application landscape should be designed to manage an optimal balance of standardization and regional innovations with flexibility to accommodate both internal and external organizational changes. Since process commonality is a function of the business process and the organizational construct (e.g., asset management may have a high degree of commonality possible at the enterprise level whereas planning and scheduling has a low degree of commonality at the enterprise level, but a high degree is possible at the business-unit level), a ‘one solution fits all’ strategy will not work.
A reasonable degree of commonality can be attained as illustrated in the chart below. It is based on our experience in many large-scale global transformation and business process harmonization programs.
While defining the business process, it is critical to prioritize and focus on common process design on a relatively smaller number of processes that provide the greatest improvement and impact. Tangible business benefits should be highlighted at the beginning of the definition process and agreed upon by all key stakeholders to facilitate a seamless adoption. Some factors that must be considered are optimal leverage of the organization's global workforce across the value chain, future strategy of process management / shared services, possible M&A, supplier rationalization and client experience strategies.
Our approach to global process harmonization leverages deep domain expertise of predefined industry process maps, best practices from SAP processes, and alignment with industry and cross industry solutions for robust and template-based solutions. We focus on designing a flexible foundation on which existing and new business requirements can be rapidly deployed. By leveraging our tools, accelerators and process repositories, we provide end-to-end global process harmonization solution, with assured business benefits. In addition, our robust program and change management capabilities deliver a solution that is predictable and of a high quality, with shorter time-to-benefit and reduced Total Cost of Operation.
Read how a global automotive OEM successfully achieved process harmonization across 25 countries in Europe and APAC with a reduced TCO of 40 percent.