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IPS – Improving the hand-off from product development to logistics

IPS by LeverX: A Case Study

Manufacturing Workflow: Improving the handoff from product development to logistics in SAP

Today, we will take a closer look at a success story involving the LeverX Integrated Process Solution (IPS) for SAP and business process management. This client is emphasizing the need to improve the handoff of product information from development to logistics, for both process and discrete manufacturing projects.

A Fortune 100 manufacturing firm based in the midwest has been working with LeverX to gain better control over their day to day process operations within SAP.

Initially, the client was utilizing the SAP Business Workflow engine directly, but the complexity of the engine proved to be a major deterrent to ongoing process tuning and development. Essentially, the customer was dealing with very rigid workflows and a one-size-fits-all approach.

Looking for a way to better control these business processes, our client turned to the IPS solution from LeverX. By enabling direct departmental user control over these day to day business processes, user adoption and success IPS by LeverX: A Case Study IPS enables agile workflow and business process management throughout the SAP ERP Application. rates are considerably higher for each business process.

A stronger value is provided to the client long term by meeting compliance objectives and at the same time, eliminating shadow systems and workarounds that users frequently create to supplement ERP based process management.

This new IPS deployment needed to support both SAP DMS and SAP ECR/ECO-related processes within the traditional SAP GUI with robust and flexible workflow capabilities. The deployment was scaled across three key divisions that have the most robust process requirements: health care, industrial, and safety.

Working across functional areas of SAP

The initial workflow templates built within IPS are spanning several functional areas within SAP, including product change management and document management. An essential goal of the process was to allow individual sites and business groups to manage their own workflow templates. All functionality is now deployed through the primary SAP GUI, enabling these users to access workflow templates and rules through the primary interface of SAP, without needing to learn another interface or install additional client software.

Key Compliance and Control Features Implemented:

  • Bills of Material / BOMs are now required to be under change control
  • Process Orders are required to only allow “Approved” recipes to be attached to the order (requires the use of ECR/ECO in SAP GUI)
  • Workflow with digital signatures on approvals
  • Agents assigned to approval tasks need to be identified according to material attributes, such as the product hierarchy code and plant.

Workflow Implementation Success

The initial SAP DMS & ECR/ECO workflow deployment was completed in May of 2016, with additional discussions ongoing about extending the capabilities to other departments and workflows. LeverX has delivered on highly accelerated project timeframes to ensure internal certification goals are met.

By leveraging a template-driven workflow design model, our client is now effectively managing their own business process workflows. Employee changes, process changes, and similar events are easily updated so the workflow within the system actually reflects the workflow being performed by employees within the organization. The elimination of shadow processes, the mini-workflows that employees develop outside of the main system, is a key factor in driving improved efficiency & transparency within the organization.