Steelcase Jeraisy deploys SAP R/3

Saudi Arabia’s leading office furniture and equipment manufacturer, Steelcase Jeraisy, has implemented SAP R/3 to integrate its business processes and deliver real time information to key decision makers.

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By  Matthew Southwell Published  December 3, 2002

Saudi Arabia’s leading office furniture and equipment manufacturer, Steelcase Jeraisy, has implemented SAP R/3 to integrate its business processes and deliver real time information to key decision makers. Deployed in just five months, the solution serves over 50 users at one central site in Riyadh and it is an integral part of the company’s future growth.

“By investing in the most advanced technology available, our 22,000 sq. metre facility has the capability to design and manufacture products that will be both distributed in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and exported elsewhere,” explains Midhat Mustafa, MIS/PIC & procurement manager, Steelcase Jeraisy.

“We have implemented SAP to support these plans and provide us with a total integrated solution for all of the company’s business processes,” he adds.

Live since the beginning of November last year, SAP R/3 has replaced Steelcase Jeraisy’s legacy system, which Mustafa says had reached the end of its natural lifespan and was no longer capable of meeting the company’s technology needs.

“Our existing application mix was not integrated and it lacked strong security. It was also no longer supported [by the vendor] and there was no technical documentation available for the system. Furthermore, we could not upgrade it, which is why we decided to implement SAP,” he says.

Before opting for R/3, Steelcase Jeraisy completed a detailed evaluation of the market’s other ERP offerings. However, it soon found that SAP’s solution matched the majority of its requirements.

“We found that majority of our requirements in business terms could be found in SAP R/3 and, with its seamless integration, it could give us more accurate information. Also, SAP R/3 has a scalable architecture, with flexible and open technology that can integrate multiple platforms, which is what we needed,” comments Mustafa.

“We were also informed by existing SAP R/3 users that SAP can provide better support than any other ERP vendors and that they upgrade their product with respect to market requirements all the time,” he adds.

The deployment of SAP’s Sales & Distribution, Materials Management, Production Planning, Warehouse Management, Plant Maintenance, Finance & Controlling, and Quality Management modules has brought a number of benefits to the office furniture and equipment manufacturer. For example, it has allowed the company to integrate its purchase order management with its parent company through the internet and consolidate its production orders based on its manufacturing calendar.

“Integration with Steelcase's materials management system in the US through the internet has helped us to reduce the manual data entry for inbound deliveries,” says Mustafa. “Consolidation of production orders helps us give only essential data and less paper work to operators through shop floor consolidated jobs for fabrication and welding departments, paint and trim schedules and reduced the transaction time for confirmation and give online reports on standard hours Vs actual hours variances,” he adds.

Integrating the company’s barcode scanners with R/3 has further reduced transaction times, as they can now be used to confirm production orders, automate receiving and delivery and print labels for inbound deliveries.

“Interfacing [SAP] with our barcode scanners has helped us automate the business processes in goods receipt, shop floor order confirmation and delivery. This has already reduced transaction times and give online reports on standard hours versus actual hours variances.” explains Mustafa.

R/3 has also allowed Steelcase Jeraisy to bring its different departments together as it is now able to present users with a single system, rather than a disparate application mix.

“By deploying R/3 we can work on one system instead of using multiple applications, which helps our company and our staff talk the same language throughout the organisation. SAP also helps us to bring all the departments onto one common platform, which means that we are able to get updated information on-line to take accurate business decisions,” says Mustafa.

Moving forward, Steelcase Jeraisy is looking to build on its initial R/3 implementation by deploying SAP’s human resources, e-business and e-commerce modules. “We will add more modules to our initial SAP deployment as we continue to grow our business,” concludes Mustafa.

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