Honda Australia embarked on an IT transformation project to replace its legacy operational applications with SAP S/4 HANA and SAP Automotive Enterprise Management applications. As the first of its kind in the automotive industry, this highly complex implementation required the direct involvement of SAP as the system integration partner and the support of ASG for program, change and test management.
Honda Australia was running its vehicle, and motorcycle and power equipment divisions separately – both from an operational and IT perspective.
Whilst the challenge of running two IT teams and two systems was becoming a concern, Honda Australia was experiencing other problems with its legacy IT that was leading to increased operational and cost inefficiencies. Honda saw the replacement of its legacy IT as an opportunity to:
- Provide a seamless user interface for its Dealer Network responsible for retailing vehicle, motorcycle, power equipment, marine and replacement parts product.
- Introduce a level of automation when reporting financial data to Honda headquarters, replacing the complex and highly manual process that existed.
- Create a single view of customer data to improve overall customer experience, marketing and analytics.
In 2016, Honda Australia began its IT transformation with the objective to run with only one system for its separate entities. This would mean replacing its bespoke built legacy operational applications with SAP Parts, Finance, Warranty, Vehicle Distribution and Manufacturing modules.
Using its own internal IT teams and leveraging the support provided by SAP, Honda Australia decided it would implement SAP S/4 HANA – the next generation ERP system, along with SAP’s Automotive Enterprise Management applications.
Due to the highly complex nature of the solution, its newness to market, and the challenged environment where it was to be implemented, Honda knew it needed support beyond the system integration services offered by SAP.
ASG – Accelerating change
With proven experience working with SAP solutions, along with a wealth of experience managing large-scale projects, ASG were able to review and recommend a strategy and series of processes following proven frameworks and pragmatic practices aligned to the unique stakeholder requirements.
Throughout the journey, ASG played a significant and critical role in the progression and delivery of key project milestones for Honda, working in collaboration to provide advisory, project management, testing, and change management services.
ASG assisted in coordinating processes, tasks and resources between the two stakeholders, helping to achieve and maintain efficiency goals, minimise delays and ensure the success of the project.
The engagement of ASG for project management ensured decisions were made in the best interests of Honda and that implementation dates were achieved with detailed, timely, and transparent information delivered to Honda throughout. ASG ensured the project governance required to coordinate resources and tasks across multiple stakeholders. The governance provided gave Honda management access to information, data and advice needed to steer the project through unforeseen risks and challenges of the implementation.
To help minimise risk and ensure the integrity of the solution, ASG provided specialist support to help plan and manage quality and solution testing. Under tight timeframes, ASG ensured quality testing was conducted by pragmatically managing scope and monitoring, and reporting progress daily. In order to ensure successful adoption of new processes and solutions, ASG worked hand in hand with Honda’s change management team to facilitate the organisational change management required by the technology change.
Caroline McMahon, Director of Honda Australia said,
“ASG provided a pragmatic level of support across all aspects of their service; from program delivery to program review and recommendations.
ASG very quickly grew to be a trusted business advisor to Honda both during and post SAP implementation,” she said.
The implementation of SAP S/4 HANA with SAP Automotive Enterprise Management applications into Honda Australia was the first of its kind in the automotive industry.
With its ongoing ASG partnership, Honda Australia are continuing to realise the operational benefits that come with replacing legacy applications and are looking to deploy additional SAP capabilities to further improve the way they engage and serve their customers.
McMahon said future improvements for the organisation involved the roll-out of a common platform across all Honda businesses in Australia, leading to optimisation of business processes across all business units.
SAP S/4 HANA
SAP S/4 HANA provides market leading organisations, like Honda, with a proven framework to adopt industry best practices while attaining operational excellence – focusing on collaborative product innovation, manufacturing and logistics, and sales.
The value of the SAP S/4 HANA provides simplification and acceleration of the user experience, architecture, and processes. Front line users are empowered through an end-user centric, consumer grade experience that ensures a consistent, role-based user experience across all devices.
The SAP S/4 HANA has a simplified data model that provides an advanced digital data architecture, which provides a real time, single source of truth for both transactions and analytics. This enables the flexibility to adapt to changing business models.
ABOUT HONDA AUSTRALIA
Honda is a Japanese multinational car, motorcycle and power equipment corporation that has been in operation in Australia since 1969.
Today, Honda continues to be a motorcycle sales leader in Australia- a title it has held for the last 13 years consecutively.
Honda is also one of the leading suppliers of Lawn & Garden equipment, generators and a variety of other engine powered products, both through its own distribution channels and through many other Australian Original Equipment manufacturers.
Honda also sells a full range of technologically advanced marine outboard engines and in 2018 has experienced the greatest growth in the Australian market.