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Reference Projects ...
This site contains important and successful reference projects in a more detailed format, which should provide an impression of my careers defined tasks, critical elements, the approach taken to achieve them and the results.

Examples chosen are from a global concern in the telecommunication industry, however in respect to the initial situation, the approach and the critical elements are neither branch specific nor depending on a certain company size.

You detect similarities to the situation within Procurement in your company? You are confronted with the same challenges? I'm looking forward to your inquiry to analyze YOUR specific problem and I will submit a proposal which is adapted to your situation and your setting of a task.

Together with the customer each new project is at first a subject of a detailed analysis, whose results will determine how to proceed and will be adapted to the particular customer and his specific situation.

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1. Introduction of EDI and WebEDI of an European telecommunication company at the production site in Shanghai China [-]
- EDI: Electronic Data Interchange

BenefitB2B - EDI
:: Full automatization of the ordering process
:: Reduction of leadtimes by 80%
:: Cost savings by reduction of indirect cost and headcount
:: Reduction of inventory cost by more than 30%

Initial situation
Mid of 2005 the location Shanghai had 2 functions: sales area China and worldwide production location for several product lines. SAP was used for sales, logistics and production, however EDI was not in use. All purchase orders have been printed, manually signed and send by letter post or via fax to the suppliers.

Result of the analysis:
- more than 1.000 Mio€ annual purchase order volume
- each month approx. 3.000 purchase orders, by the majority for production material
- 410 main suppliers ("A" vendors)
- around 8.000 parts (components and electronic material)

Involved functions:
- Purchasing, Logistics and Material Management, Finance and Accounting, IT


Critical elements
- Inconsistent usage of major SAP data fields
- Mixture of English and Chinese terms within SAP
- Inconsistent usage of part codes
- Scarce English knowledge at some local suppliers
- Local rules in respect to obligatory order transactions

Approach
- To balance the European expertise for EDI with the Chinese local aspects, a multinational project team has been initiated, which encompassed in equal parts European experts and local representatives. At the same time a review board with predominant local Executive management was assigned, which held bi-weekly project status reviews; participation of European representatives by conference calls.

- Definition of the most important material groups (volume, frequency of ordering) and cleansing of the related material master data in SAP, as well as definition of the big and mid-size suppliers with which the introduction of EDI should be targeted (some 100 out of 410)

- Initiation of the necessary process- and system adaptations within the location Shanghai and with defined suppliers. Adjustment of the existing EDI solution for local situations (mainly Chinese characters and a Chinese user interface)

- Early involvement of the impacted users and preparation of a training plan

- Stepwise introduction "per supplier" including training of suppliers representatives


Results
- 4 months after the project approval EDI was put into operation with the first big supplier; WebEDI followed 2 months later for mid-size suppliers
- Training for some 200 users and more than 100 suppliers representatives
- 1 year after the start of the project 25% of all purchase orders have been processed fully automated, which was leading to a significant reduction of efforts and costs
- At the same time the lead-time for purchase orders and order confirmations was reduced by 80%
- As designated side effect VMI (Vendor Managed Inventories) has been introduces with more than 100 suppliers in order to shift inventory cost and -risks to the suppliers.

 
2. To set up and manage an international team of experts for Procurement systems within global strategical Procurement [-]
Benefitinternational team of experts
:: Concentration of competencies for Procurement processes and systems towards users and IT
:: Centralized realization of business strategies
:: Global headcount- and cost reduction by grouping of experts know how
Initial situation

In the context of a new global 'Procurement and Sourcing' function of a big telecommunication company it was necessary, to regroup the previously decentralized competencies for purchasing systems.
These decentralized and inconsistent have been leading to competing systems strategies, to multiple interfaces to IT departments, uncoordinated and redundant development efforts and as well uncoordinated data structures.
Furthermore the responsibilities for systems budgets and priorities have been indistinct
Critical elements

- Consequent support by the local and global management
- Clearly defined and communicated business model, consistent business strategy
- Distinct responsibility for the team organization and the interfaces to IT
- Organizational flexibility for the allocation of personnel
Approach

- Analysis of personnel in respect to expertise and task allocation, with involvement of human resources and local management
- Multiple and intense one-on-one interviews
- Development of an organizational unit with a central core team as interface to IT and other operational functions and local teams as interface to user groups
- Development of a global communication management function
- Re-allocation of appropriate persons as experts for 'processes & tools'
- Specification of job definition, responsibilities and target groups as well as interfaces to partner functions
Results

- Within 6 months a new global team of around 40 experts in 10 countries have been created and was acting as organizational unit to support more than 1.400 users
- Assigned task was the function of an 'internal consultant' responsible for all questions and strategies with respect to purchasing processes and -systems
- The core team acted as the central and unique interface to IT with competence for strategy
- The local teams operated as direct user contact and led in authority local implementations
- Members of staff have been actively involved into strategies and changes in processes and systems by the central communication management.

 
3. Introduction of a worldwide information management system for the global Procurement organization of a big concern [-]
Benefitworldwide information management
:: Reduction of IT development cost by around 40% due to systems unification
:: Saving of around 70% of systems maintenance cost due to decommissioning of redundant systems and abolition of interfaces
:: Significant increase of data quality and actuality
Initial situation

For strategical corporate decisions within central Procurement of a global telecommunication concern information out of several independent systems have been used. Thus supplier invoices have been stored in one systems, whereas supplier contracts or planned demands have been stored in another system.

These systems have been realized on diverse platforms and with varying application software; there have been no interfaces between those applications. Several systems have been technologically outdated. The data needed centrally have been imported from manifold local operational systems.

Complexity
- 5 different central systems with worldwide usage
- At the beginning some 20-30 operational data sources
- Around 1.400 users worldwide spread over approx. 70 subsidiaries
- Around 60 users centrally
- Around 40.000 suppliers master data
- Purchasing volume in a double digits billions range

Effects due to this heterogeneous situation
- Problems with data consistency and data redundancy
- Unsecured basis for decisions due to unsecured basic data
- Multiple manual efforts for data maintenance and -synchronization
- Each user had multiple user ID's, multiple password- and profile maintenance
- Missing user acceptance which led to 'private' parallel data storage
- Multiple efforts for systems development and -maintenance on side of users and within IT


Critical elements
- No interruption of ongoing business allowed
- Limited budgets
- Parallel operations of legacy systems and new system
- Multiple user needs and requirements
- Heterogeneous operational IT systems with plenty interfaces
Approach

- Gathering and analysis of the as-is situation including the current and future information needs
- Conceptual design of a vision, the long term strategy and the tactical realization
- Elaboration of the transformation design as decision document
- Development and implementation of a new integrated system based on a plan by stages
- Gradual deactivation of legacy systems
- Continuous user information and user training's
Results

- 1 year after project approval the new system was in operational use
- Within 2 years all legacy systems have been decommissioned
- The new system encompassed all relevant management information for the global procurement function within one single integrated application with unified data management
- All 1.400 users have been able to work with only 1 application rather than with 5 different ones
- Annual cost for maintenance and enhancements have been reduced by 70%
- Efforts and know how could be focussed to just one single application.

 
4. Introduction of a e-sourcing system in a global telecommunication company [-]
Benefite-sourcing
:: Transformation of negotiation processes to new electronic media
:: Improvement of negotiation results by more than 20%
:: Acceleration of negotiation lead-times by more than 70%
:: Standardization within the material groups
:: Considerable reduction of negotiation efforts in order to increase the procurement efficiency
Initial situation

Negotiations have been performed with the classical method:
- Transmitting requests for information or inquiries by letter post, mail or fax
- Sending of bids as well by letter post, mail or fax
- Manual evaluation and selection as well as creation of shortlist's
- Invitation of the potential suppliers for personal negotiation rounds
This process was very protracted, extensive and capacity consuming and could be only executed few times a year. Due to rapid purchasing price changes a new and faster process was necessary to enable as well more frequent price negotiations.

Outline
- around 700 purchaser worldwide in local organizations
- approx. 200 material groups
- several hundred suppliers, partly global, regional or local


Critical elements
- Change of the working method of negotiating purchasers and the methodology to execute negotiations
- Business relations with long-time regular suppliers
- Identification and qualification of new suppliers
- Identification of appropriate material groups
- New technology which requires intense training and users support during the learning curve
- Changed key figures and reports
Approach

- Definition of a project with project team and steering board
- Determination of needed key figures (number of transactions users, templates etc.)
- Selection of potential service providers together with the responsible purchasing department
- Evaluation and decision process with respect to potential alternatives
- Involvement of the chosen service provider into the project work
- Customization of the application according the companies requirements and load of master data
- Stepwise introduction 'per user group' with accompanying online training
- Implementation of a specific help desk with dedicated personal to clarify start-up problems spontaneously and direct
- Initial support by the service provider for the execution of e-auctions 
Results

- In a time frame of around 5 months after the project launch the new application was in operational use and 700 purchasers have been trained
- For material groups with high volumes and more standardized products 60% of the negotiations have been done electronically
- Significant better negotiation results have been achieved with price reductions more in the range of 20-25% rather than 5-15%
- The duration of negotiations have been drastically reduced from several weeks to several days
- The frequency could be considerably increased.

 
5. Consolidation of the purchasing information systems of two global companies due to a merger [-]
Benefitmerger
:: Harmonization of redundant processes and elimination of unneeded systems
:: Enabling additional purchasing savings in the range of several Mio€
:: Reduction of IT cost for systems development, maintenance and interfaces
Initial situation

Due to the merger of two global companies of the telecommunication industry it was necessary, to consolidate the purchasing information systems of both companies.
Task was, to allow for all purchasing staff full access to relevant supplier information of both companies starting with Day 1.
Target was, to re-negotiate the active contracts immediately as new united company, in order to achieve further price reductions based on the combined volumes
Critical elements

- Different and on Day 1 not harmonized business processes
- Differing company cultures (European vs. American)
- Because of legal regulations only limited exchange of documents or other information was possible before Day 1
-  IT systems could not be connected before the fusion
- Around 2.000 users of both companies in approx. 40 countries had to be permitted and trained on one another systems
- The combined volume of both companies encompassed e.g. more than 100.000 supplier records and as well as 23.000 contracts and other documents
- Extremely tight schedule with unknown risks due to diverging data structures
Approach

- Creation and management of a combined project team with experts from both companies about 6 months before the planned fusion
- Comparative analysis of the fundamental processes, data and systems of both companies
- Joint definition of the "best practice" and the target situation
- Preparation of interfaces and translation tables with involvement of IT experts
- Definition and prioritization of the most important process- and system interfaces which must be operational starting with Day 1
- Preparation of a comprehensive communication- and information plan
- Preparation of a training concept with predominant local presence of the trainers
- Coordination of interface activities and data migration for Day 1 including backup plan
- Establishing of a 30-60-90 days plan for the post merger integration
- Consequent conversion to 1 target system or 1 target process
Results

- Straight before Day 1 IT performed comprehensive and successful technical functions tests
- On Day 1 all interfaces could be activated without problems
- The employees of both companies could access and handle the most important strategical information's of one another company (e.g. supplier contracts)
- Reports encompassed the combined volumes of both companies
- Revision and re-negotiation of the most important or critical supplier contracts could start immediately; thus it was possible to achieve in the first months after the merger additional purchasing price reductions within the upper two digits Mio€'s range
- Due to the intense preparations several redundant databases could be decommissioned already in the first 3 months, which led to significant cost savings of several hundred thousands of Euros.

 
6. Design and realization of a global purchasing price database [-]
Benefitglobal price database
:: Unification of Purchasing prices and centralization in one single database
:: Rationalization of the personnel structure in the indirect area
:: Pre requisition for a new centralized purchasing price management process
:: Unitary and consistent price basis for purchasing, finance and for supply chain functions
Initial situation

Due to formerly decentralized responsibilities for supplier prices several different purchasing price databases preexisted with varying processes and multiple responsibilities. Due to a change of the business model in direction of central price responsibility it became necessary, to create a new central and unified price database.
Thus required as well a change of interfaces to operational purchasing systems; at the same time organization and processes needed to be adapted
Critical elements

- Local solutions with local responsibility and local different processes
- Varying local prices for the same product from the same supplier
- Multiple new interfaces to operational purchasing systems
- Creation of a new support team in a LCC for central price management with a difficult learning curve
- around 40.000 A-Items and some 300.000 B- and C-items
Approach

- Nomination of 2 project teams: one responsible for the new organization and the staffing of the new support team and one responsible for the system design, governance of the IT development and the roll out of the new price database
- Coordinated proceeding was ensured by few overlapping members and a common steering board
- Capturing of functional requirements and new processes and based on that definition of 3 system development packages
- In parallel constitution of the new team with gradual move of tasks according the progress of the project
Results

- Concentration of price management in a central team and one single database
- Reduction of indirect headcount by some 30% and at the same time reduction of indirect cost by more than 60%
- Replacement and deactivation of 6 local databases over a period of 2 years
- full and consistent price transparency for all buyers.

 
7. Deployment of a General Expense workflow system in North Americas [-]
Benefitworkflow system
:: consistent, cross functional and fast electronic request and approval process
:: Platform for electronic catalogues by product standardization
:: Increase of efficiency and productivity due to paperless approval flows
:: Sustainable cost reduction due to transparent cost- and budget management
Initial situation

In the subsidiaries of an European / American Group requests, budget control and approval for General Expenses have been executed mainly on paper form sheets. The different processes and responsibilities which evolved over time have been time consuming and intransparent; a central cost control was only possible as retroactive control of outgoing payments. An company owned system was available, however customized for European processes. The integrated catalogue management had to be rebuilt for North America
Critical elements

- Cross functional process harmonization required (Finance, Procurement, Accounting)
- to convert and train around 4.000 employees for electronic approval procedures
- Conversion of processes within Finance and Accounting
- electronic catalogues for several hundred articles and around 20 suppliers
- differing European and American processes
Approach

- Nomination of a cross functional project team with members from Finance, Procurement and IT
- Harmonization of requirements based on the existing system with American users
- Arranging the adaptation developments for the application and the interfaces
- Analysis of requests of the past 12 months in respect to potential standardization for products and suppliers
- Selection of an external e-catalogue supplier and adaptation of the specific e-catalogues
- Specification of the new unified approval process with the American management
- Intense multistage communication with various hierarchical levels
- Extensive employees information- and training programs combined with on site training's
- Establishing of a specific support task force for the first months after initiation
Results

- Successful implementation of the new system with some 4.000 employees within the planned schedule
- Reduction of A-Suppliers from around 70 to just under 20 by products standardization and introduction of electronic catalogues
- Reduction of lead-times from request via approval to order placement by approx. 80%
- Transparent and tight budget control and approval PRIOR to order placement
- Reduction of General Expenses by around 30%.
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