How ERP Benefits the Energy and Utilities industry?

We get to hear a lot about the manufacturing industry, the transportation sector, the IT domain, and even the healthcare department. Little is known is said or heard about the Energy and Utilities industry, right?

Even if that’s true, the industry exists and is, without a doubt, one of the most spectacular segments today. Experts of the domain consider it to be undergoing a revolutionary phase with growth domination. There are plenty of operations and multiple requirements that don’t seem to halt in the foreseeable future. In fact, demand is only expected to rise. Maintaining assets, monitoring productivity, mapping the needs of natural resources and adhering to the market demands, the Energy and Utilities Industry has to deal with all.

Performing all of the above distinctly is a cumbersome and daunting task. Also, manual execution can cause errors, let alone the possibility of messing up operations. To deal with this, organizations are proactively advancing towards the adoption of ERP solutions.

What’s ERP For Energy and Utilities?

Gone are the times when industries were in search of traditional methodologies to organize their job and streamline operations. With the onset of digital tools, competition has risen to an extremely high level. In order to succeed, organizations need to provide business-specific services and in a way that maps the expectations of all. ERP software solutions are tailored to do the same.

Robust and scalable solutions, ERP software is designed to map the needs of a business in a cost-effective manner. Right from CRM, to repair and service management, Business intelligence & reporting, or LBS, the ERP system software entails all.

Why do Business Leaders need To Invest in ERP?

True that the task of migrating the existing though siloed infrastructure to a modernized one is tiresome. Also, there is a bundle of challenges organizational managers need to face while making the move. However, the list of benefits associated with the adoption of ERP for everyday business operations is worth the pain.

Some of the advantages of using ERP solution in the Energy and Utility sector includes:

  • Accelerate business productivity and increase profitability.
  • ERP solution is capable of mapping all of the needs and requirements of the energy sector in an optimal manner.s
  • Allow business managers to allocate and align resources with extreme efficiency.
  • It simplifies the execution of operations and integrates the functionality of every module.
  • Eases the intricacies related to the process and smoothens business activities.
  • Enhances the rate of returns generated by optimizing tasks.
  • Accounts for seamless integration with other technologies such as Bacon, BI, Big Data, Cloud Computing, etc

It is pretty obvious that modern ERP solutions are not just a fad but a comprehensive set of software that holds the ability to transform business operations and in a way that enhances the productivity of the same. No wonder why 81% of the organizations have migrated or are on the cusp of migrating towards ERP for the Energy & Utilities Industry.

Challenges Faced By the Industry

As stated above, the road to integrating ERP software suite isn’t swift and there are multiple areas that need to be considered while making the move. What’s good is the fact that ERP software owns the potential to deal with those challenges and also, curb the impact of the same.

  • Issues with supply chain management
  • The need to map with industrial expectations
  • Attain optimal performance and increase productivity
  • Deal with environment and sustenance issues
  • Lower the cost of operation accounting for rising profits.

Where do the Energy and Utilities Industry Lag?

The energy and utility industry has a vast scope. Meaning that there are multiple things that need to be focused on and taken care of. Amongst the various areas of operation, the most important ones include:

  • Order Management:

    With mobilization and high-end globalization, industries are no longer bounded by geographical barriers. Customers can place orders from across the globe. Keeping track of work orders becomes difficult when there are multiple channels and hence, the need for a unified module that can integrate all.

  • Billings:

    Collecting cash whether physically or accepting online payments. Local customers or regional buyers, billing needs to be managed and monitored effectively. Tariff Rates to be regulated based on the country, region, and customer.

  • Asset Management:

    Irrespective of the kind of industry, asset management is one such segment that requires tremendous attention. A single mismatch might cause billions to the enterprise. It is important to have an ERP solution that excels in managing assets in a few clicks without causing errors.

  • Handling Outages:

    This is one of the most complicated tasks in an energy and utility sector. ERP solution helps manage and monitor tickets that have registered outages and then enable asset management that is geographically located. Often considered as a hurdle, an ERP solution can be the game-changer.

  • Increase Power Generation:

    MIS reports and in-depth analysis, the adoption of ERP software suite helps manage and monitor the demand for fuel and corresponding supply to reduce the cost. Performing an exhaustive study on fuel procurement, managers can cut down unwanted spending and optimize resource allocation.

The Final Word

Having said the above, it won’t be wrong to state that the adoption of ERP software in the energy and utility sector is not a matter of choice. Instead, it is a necessary step that every organizational leader must take to improve business functionality.

However, there are a set of measures that you must take before adopting the solution. At first, an extensive study of the existing infrastructure needs to be done in order to outline the gaps. Once done, the managers can then align resources with the requirements and move ahead with the integration process. Make sure a standard is set and only the data that’s important is migrated to the new system. Stuffing all of the unwanted data tends to dampen productivity lowering efficiency.

Finally, a proper schedule needs to be maintained and a step by step process should be followed to aid the successful implementation of the technology.


SharePoint ECM – Your Organization’s Content Management Partner

Organizations that planned to digitize their workforce or in other words, go paperless might have had a tough time in the last decade. Even though there are thousands of solutions that streamline the process of digital transformation, organizations fail to effectively implement the same.

Talking about the amount of content generated each day, organizing and managing them is a cumbersome task. Right from images to documents, emails and web content, an enterprise needs to align all. Where manually processing all of the above drains out resources as well as energy, ECM software emerges as the game-changer.

What is ECM?

ECM or the enterprise content management system is nothing but the technologies that are utilized to manage, capture, store and deliver documents digitally. It is a one-stop-shop-solution for all the enterprises looking for a content management system. In simple terms, ECM software eases the task of managing and monitoring unstructured enterprise information, increasing efficiency, and business productivity.

Having said that, it is worth notifying that not every ECM works well with an enterprise. In order to unleash the true potential of organizations’ content management needs, the ECM should be flexible as well as rich in features. Also, it must possess the extensive capability of managing documents and creating records in the most optimal way. This is where we introduce the idea of using SharePoint as the enterprise content management system.

Wondering why?

Why SharePoint for Your Enterprise’s Content Management?

Put simply, SharePoint is one tool that aids the management of end to end enterprise content. It comprises four different pillars rather than components that facilitate the task of managing content within an enterprise.

  • Document Management
  • Records Management
  • Digital Asset Management
  • Web Content Management

Document Management

Managing documents manually isn’t the best way. Each day millions of data are produced and organizations need to store, manage and organize all. With the SharePoint’s Document Management system, organizational leaders can opt for centralized storage. What this means is that instead of storing documents individually, employees have access to a central repository of data that would be used to store data. This repository can then be accessed ubiquitously by all irrespective of their location.

Accessing documents globally might create a mess as employees can access any or every day. To prevent this, SharePoint enables co-authoring documents. This suggests that managers can restrict access to a particular document by assigning it to the ideal employee. On the greater good, when two or more employees work on the same document, it accelerates the pace at which work is done, increasing productivity and efficiency of the same.

In addition to the above, SharePoint’s Document Management System renders an audit trail notifying the manager on all the activities carried out on a piece of the document.

Digital Asset Management

Under this category, SharePoint includes media asset libraries. All of the libraries that are part of the digital asset in SharePoint has been tailored to aid the process of aligning audio, graphic and video files. The presence of a number of content types specifies a range of features that are not part of standard libraries. Asset browsing and playing popup videos are backed by thumbnail views. Alongside, the inbuilt media players in the SharePoint intranet portal enable playing videos directly.

Premeditated Record Management

Having records of data is needed to keep track of the transactions made as a piece of evidence. When done manually, organizational leaders spend a considerable amount of time and effort. With SharePoint ECM solutions, the enterprise leaders can automate the creation and storage of records.

Further, organizations need not worry about the security of the data as SharePoint encompasses two-factor authentication and total encryption. The eDiscovery center offered by SharePoint is a kind of site that eases the task of searching content and also, identifying the same electronically. Using SharePoint for record management, users can not only export its content but also keep track of holds posted on certain content.

Web Content Management

The last component of SharePoint ECM is related to the management of web content. Whether users wish to create content for the web or decorate the same to induce a consistent look, SharePoint’s web content management caters to all. The prevalence of reusable templates makes it easy for users to recreate website content quickly. Also, using the same template for multiple pages ensure that a steady appearance is maintained. All in all, SharePoint web content management cuts down the cost of deployment saving time and money.

What’s more?

It is not just the components that aid the process of managing content within the enterprise, but there are a number of factors too.

  • For one, using SharePoint as the enterprise content management system software cuts down the total cost associated with it. It is ready to go software and has been available for free for a long time. Even if users are asked to buy the license for the same, SharePoint ECM is available at affordable rates.
  • The SharePoint platform is highly secured. Whether you consider the dual authentication or the file encryption, organizations deploying SharePoint need not worry about the privacy and protection of their data.
  • SharePoint provides third party support. Amidst thousands of requirements, contractual obligations, and regulatory compliances, SharePoint provides support to all. True that there are other vendors too who render support for different services, however, none encapsulates all. It is, only SharePoint, that is one-size-that-fits all kind of solution.

The Final Word

Having said all of the above, it is pretty obvious that SharePoint ECM stands out as the enterprise content management system software for organizations struggling to manage and monitor their organization data. The solution is flexible and can map the needs of all kinds of business. Whether a successful enterprise or a mid-market organization, SharePoint ensures flawless implementation. With robust capabilities and out of the box features, SharePoint seems apt as the enterprise content management system software. In case you too are in a search of the dauntless software for content management, SharePoint ECM might fit the puzzle best.


Accelerate and Optimize Direct Procurement with SAP Ariba Solution

Direct Procurement is one of those areas that has long been the topic of discussion for most of the organizations. Acquiring raw materials as well as goods for production needs to be done in a cost-effective manner. It is noted that nearly 26% of organizational spend is on direct procurement.

It is important to reduce the overall spend and this is where SAP Ariba comes into the picture. SAP noted all of the discrepancies existing and working towards adding the missing piece indirect procurement. This is basically done by adhering to the needs of direct sourcing through integration between PLM and SAP Ariba Sourcing.

Also, the SAP Ariba deals with the planning collaboration rendering the forecasting ability. On the other hand, Supply Chain Collaboration (SCC) entails the visibility of the Subcontracting process. Starting with the issue of raw material to the status of all the goods manufactured and finally to the receipt of finished goods, SAP Ariba Solutions addresses all.

Direct Procurement with SAP Ariba

SAP Ariba direct procurement can be categorized in a total of two ways through ERP integration.

  • Direct Sourcing
  • Supply Chain Collaboration

Direct Sourcing

SAP Ariba direct material sourcing allows organizational leaders to gain the expertise of Ariba Sourcing application with Quote and embed the same within the RFX Functionality. What this suggests is the Integration of the organizational ERPs with SAP Ariba Sourcing. Further, additional integration includes Quite Automation and Product Sourcing with BOMs.

There are two different ways of direct material sourcing in Ariba.

  • Creation of Sourcing request –

    Sourcing project, then RFX and Contract, followed by the Contract to ERP

  • Creation of Quote from PR –

    Quotation, followed by the Quote and then, Contract/PO

Supply Chain Collaboration

This includes the integration of the ERP system of the organization with the ASN to extend the procurement forecasting capabilities. Such integration facilitates attaining timely commitment from the vendors and then, using the above to outline business-specific and realistic decisions to avoid glitches in the supply chain.

Why SAP Ariba for SCC?

Knowing about the supply chain collaboration integration with SAP Ariba gives a clear picture of how joint collaboration with the suppliers and the partners eases the task of direct procurement.

On one end, SAP Ariba, being a cloud-based solution, offers total clarity and ubiquitous visibility over supply chain materials, it also strives to maintain a healthy relationship between the partners and the suppliers, ensuring that they all club together to streamline different supply chain while lowering the stock.

  • Automated Document Management
  • Integrated Forecasting

Contract Manufacturing Collaboration (Subcontract PO) for Direct Materials

Contract manufacturing or in simple terms the subcontracting feature can be done in a series of steps. The basic subcontracting process is now deemed as the integrated SAP Ariba ASN. The conventional process executes as:

  • Subcontracting purchase orders along with components.
  • A ‘purchase order confirmation’.
  • A ‘ship to’ notice sent to the buyer.
  • Receipts and invoices sent by the buyer to the supplier.

Further, the supply chain collaboration isn’t limited to shipment, instead, it gives users the ease to keep an eye on the deliverables and the corresponding product in transit. SAP Ariba supports component shipment is more than one way.

  • One-Step Process:

    Here in this process, both the shipment activity message and the request of shipment notice is dispatched in a single step. Once the products are obtained by the buyer, a message is sent to the supplier as the delivery proof.

  • Two-step process:

    Similar to the one-step process, the two processes differ in the manner of execution. Instead of sending bot messages at the same time, this awaits the product to be received before triggering the activity message.

  • Finished Production:

    This gives suppliers the opportunity to notify the buyers about the completion of the production of finished goods. A manufacturing execution system (MES) visibility is used to keep the buyers updated on how much goods have been produced at a significant time.

  • Real-time Consumption:

    This occurs after the supplier has totally used the components as shipped by the buyer. A notification is sent to the buyer who then initiates a product activity message from SAP packed with the current component quantities to be stored in SAP as a record.

Surprisingly, SAP Ariba extends support to multi-tier subcontracting. All-round visibility of the movement of goods between the manufacturers of the subcontract and of the parts is initiated through a multi-tier order of purchase and goods receipts.

Intelligent Forecasting

Integrated forecast collaboration is another feature of SAP Ariba SCC, giving suppliers the benefit of knowing about the near rising demands and then align their operations to map the same. This ensures that organizations never fail to meet the requirements of the buyer, keeping the supply chain role effectively.

Why SAP For Direct Material Souring?

The integration of the SAP Ariba Direct Sourcing with SAP ERP or S/4HANA is executed at the time a user wishes to operate their procurement process in SAP ERP or SAP S/4HANA without collaborating with the SAP Ariba Sourcing’s procurement process.

SAP and SAP Ariba Sourcing standard integration is seen to support the combined sourcing events as triggered by the SAP ERP or the SAP S/4HANA and comprises of the:

  • Manual creation of the purchase requisitions as part of the SAP ERP materials management (MM) which is then used to form the RFQ or the request for quotation.
  • Automated creation of the purchase requisitions when the MRP runs. This further account’s for the creation of an RFQ.
  • Manually create the SAP ERP RFQs without having the need to purchase requisitions.

Direct Procurement sourcing is facilitated in SAP Ariba by Product Sourcing and Quote Automation. Each of these allows the creation of the sourcing projects from different pages or the material view. With Quote Automation buyers can speed up the process of publishing bids and getting approval from buyers. In a nutshell, it is all that an organization needs to streamline the direct procurement process.

Why is it Essential for You to Migrate to SAP S/4HANA Right Now?

The fact that you are here and reading this piece of article, it’s pretty obvious that you are currently operating your business on the SAP ERP system and also that you are aware of the decision laid by SAP to withdraw its support from all the legacy software. True, right?

So, yes. SAP is about to retract its basic system and it is due for the year 2025. Now, this might seem like you have plenty of time before actually migrating to SAP S/4 HANA, but in reality, the faster you do it, the better it is for you, your team and your business.

Migrating to a whole new infrastructure will not only cost you money but also encompass a range of transition which is tough to implement in a single go. You need to have a strategy in place before actually making the move, not to mention the need to train your employees and acquit resources.

Now, waiting for the final day might be easy but once again, it is better that you do it now, or, just today itself.

Wondering why?

There could be an array of reasons why, for now, we stick to the top three reasons that convince you to stop procrastinating and start acting

Reasons Why Should You Move To SAP S/4 HANA

  • A fully mature system: We have had our time training novice employees so that they can gain experience and maturity to execute operations effectively. Also, every time you add a new product or install new software within your organization, you would need to educate your staff to use it properly. You might have done a similar thing back when you shifted your siloed infrastructure to SAP legacy system. So, migrating again to SAP S/4 HANA might seem an overhead.But it isn’t. To everyone’s surprise, SAP S/4 HANA is a fully integrated and mature system that can gel well with all adept in using SAP. It has a repository of best practices that will help all in your organization to operate the system without having the need to seek expert support and guidance.
  • Stay A Step Ahead: When you were first told that SAP is about to discontinue it supports to ERP system, you would have been tensed as to what next. Then came the solution, the option to migrate to SAP S/4 HANA and once you heard that this action is due in 2025, you decided to delay the move and wait.Now, this is the case with the majority of the companies. Imagine that there are thousands of companies waiting to migrate their system. Eventually, the total number of experts that can help and guide organizations on the migration is limited and if everybody waits for the last day, finding support would not be difficult, but impossible.Since everyone around the corner of the world is delaying the shift, it is possible that there would be a mess created when all get to implement the same and odds suggest that when this happens, there will surely be bottlenecks and gaps in the availability of support partners.So, why wait for such a situation when you can peacefully shift your system today.
  • It Doesn’t Replace But Augment: Many of you might be worried about the fact that once you shift your system, you would no longer be able to use your existing ERP solution. However, this isn’t true. SAP S/4 HANA comes with the much-needed flexibility giving it’s users the ease to continue using their old school ERP solution while the system successfully runs on SAP S/4 HANA. As a matter of fact, the SAP Human Capital Management (HCM) module which is yet to be incorporated in the SAP S/4 HANA can easily be incorporated and used by the HR professionals.

Making The Call

And the list doesn’t end there. The modernization features, the ease to use and the simplicity of the new SAP model add to the reason why moving to SAP S/4 HANA is needed and why should you do it now.

Still doubtful?

Picture it this way- Today the SAP S/4 HANA is a pretty new concept and raw, at large. Fast forward five years in 2025, the technology would be old enough for some but new for you. Even though it would be different for your organizational staff, the solution might turn old school for most of the organizations giving them leverage over you. They could have, by then deployed newer solutions driving their business five years forward than yours.

Why stay in the backfoot when you can wistfully migrate to the system and keep up with the ever-evolving business trends.

Think about it and make the move. One-step and you can best thousands of others in the race!