Modernize its ERP in only nine months. To accomplish this small feat, the teams of the distributor Hachette LPC entrusted the experts of CEREALOG with the integration of SAP Business One. Story.
How to remain the leader in educational publishing when using an ERP developed more than 30 years ago ?
Faced with a booming market, Hachette’s subsidiary for the distribution of school books from Hachette Education, Hatier, Didier, Larousse and Foucher to teachers decided to modernise its IT tools from A to Z.
“Our previous ERP had been developed using a language that had become obsolete. It required skills that are becoming increasingly scarce and really lacked simplicity of use. Under these conditions, modernising our tools to improve efficiency became vital,“ recalls Guillaume Plantrou, Director of Hachette LPC.
To achieve this, the company’s teams issued an initial call for tenders.
The choice of performance :
Two solutions were then selected. And one of them quickly stood out.
“The possibilities offered by SAP Business One quickly convinced us. For example, with this new ERP, users could extract statistics themselves without having to call on the IT teams. What’s more, the solution was accessible on the move for the 20 or so salespeople in the field,” explains Guillaume Plantrou.
The icing on the cake : SAP Business One allows Hachette LPC to segment access to sensitive data from the various school book publishers – who remain competitors.
Nine months of work for a new ERP :
Immediately, the integrator CEREALOG joined the Hachette LPC teams to implement the new tool.
“Two CEREALOG project managers accompanied us. One for accounting, the other for logistics. They helped us from start to finish to change our ERP. Reactive and attentive to our business needs, they enabled us to complete the project in less than nine months. A challenge”, says the director of Hachette LPC.
Especially since there was no shortage of challenges. In addition to the very short deployment time, the company had to involve its 19 or so users. Training sessions are therefore organised prior to deployment.
Another challenge was to limit specific developments.
“We wanted the most agile solution possible so that we could evolve as the market and the ERP system were updated. This is why we asked CEREALOG’s experts to reduce specific developments to a minimum. Here again, they helped us to achieve this goal,” explains Guillaume Plantrou.
Processing more than 1,000 parcels per day with SAP Business One :
As a result, by January 2017, SAP Business One was up and running and hosted on the SAP Hana platform. And the benefits were not long in coming.
“The solution we have implemented is now saving us a considerable amount of time. Interfaced with the websites of our publishing customers and their accounting software, the ERP is 100% integrated with our business processes. We have even managed to have the carriers’ tools communicate with SAP Business One so that as soon as an invoice is validated, the shipping label is automatically printed,” says Guillaume Plantrou.
This is a considerable efficiency gain when, like Hachette LPC, the company has to process nearly 1,000 parcels per day during peak periods.
On the customer side, too, the benefits of the new ERP are quickly felt. Where the previous tool processed orders at night, SAP Business One does so in real time. This way, Hachette LPC’s teams no longer have to wait until the next day to ship a package. Delivery on D+1 is therefore systematically achievable for all Hachette Education customers.