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SAP PLM Journey for a Manufacturer of dispensed beverage equipment

The LeverX team assisted the customer with a phased approach to SAP PLM.

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The LeverX team assisted the customer with a phased approach to SAP PLM.


Leading manufacturer of dispensed beverage equipment.


Our client was facing internal challenges resulting from product design changes, customer requested enhancements, and a cumbersome process for envisioning and designing new products.


The SAP PLM journey began in 2009 with the selection of the SAP ERP platform, based in large part on SAP providing a robust and fully integrated PLM module.

Products and Services

Project Scope

Phase #1

Initial DMS Single Source, document change process, Visual Enterprise

The initial phase of the SAP PLM implementation focused on activating SAP CAD Integration and SAP Visual Enterprise. This is the foundation of a strong PLM vision, providing versioning, revisions, history and full linkage between documentation and SAP master data. Over 500,000 CAD files were analyzed and converted from PDMWorks and various network drives into the SAP DMS environment. This represented 17 distinct types of documents and enabled comprehensive and consistent security and change controls for engineering documents.

Phase #2

Project Management 1 — Migrate to SAP PPM, Retire old PM software

Phase 2 focused on implementing the SAP PPM module and gaining better visibility and control over project resources. The PPM solution supported the ability to create projects, assign resources, track project time, and report and manage to resource PTO time. One hundred twenty projects were set up in PPM, with 5 levels of expense approval and status network. A KPI dashboard was created from 200 columns of project data. Reports were developed for project status, key milestones and assigned hours, enabling greater management visibility across all initiatives.

Phase #3

Expand DMS, initial ECM process & basic workflow via IPS

The core emphasis in Phase 3 was Engineering Change management and included an upgrade to the core SAP platform. By implementing the Integrated Process Solution (IPS) add-on from LeverX, our client permitted department control over key product development and modification workflow processes. Engineering is able to build new workflows to break down key change notice database and Master Data Management processes. An email-enabled approval workflow was designed to allow users to approve changes without having to log into SAP itself.

Phase #4

Expand Portfolio & Project Management

This phase of the project is ongoing, and emphasizes expanded PPM capabilities that improve on project resource management, project cost management, robust project reporting, and PPM Workflow. Improving on executive dashboards and reporting standards based on PPM usage from phase 2 was a key objective that led to an updated dashboard that included 250 columns of project. Easy Document Management for project documents was also implemented, achieving the goal of a Single Source of Truth within the SAP ecosystem. LeverX IPS was used to implement workflow for PPM Project Phase approval.


The client selected LeverX to lead them on this SAP PLM journey based on several key factors that included their SAP PLM, PPM/NPDI, and Engineering Change Management expertise. LeverX’s ability to blend strong technical knowledge with business processes and manufacturing experience, alongside a thorough knowledge of industry best practices were essential to successful implementation. The initial assessment approach (SAR) provided a clear roadmap to the Single Source of Truth that stakeholders and team members could rally behind and ensure everyone was working towards a common goal. Twelve data silos were initially targeted, and fourteen were consolidated through this project.

Clear benefits from each core area of the project are:

        • Ability to be more disciplined in approach to product development and support;
        • Automated manual tasks, eliminated redundant data silos, and reduced non-value-added work;
        • Improved management visibility.

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      • Reduced New Product Development and major customer request turnaround time in Engineering Services by 35%. This improvement allows information to be production ready 29 days quicker per customer order.
      • Reduced minor customer request turn time in Engineering Services by 71%
      • Reduced average months for equipment set up in SAP to first sale by 71% (8.3 to 2.4)
      • Reduced engineering change request rework by 8%
      • Reduced engineering change requests in queue by 50% (500 to 250)
      • Improvements allow information to be production-ready 32 days quicker per customer order
      • More hours available for value-added tasks like Quality, New Product Development, and customer requests - 20 people had 50% more time for priorities
      • Cost avoidance by automating PDF generation with our conversion engine, eliminating the need for 100 additional SAP licenses in manufacturing. Additional savings from the retirement of PM and PDM software
      • DMS and PPM allow us to automate electronic purchase requisitions with workflow
      • Reduced manual entry to support customer website by using SAP material master and push to website, reducing graphic design time by 90%

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