Managing an SAP IBP Implementation and Roll out - Part 2

Posted by Suresh Sellaiah on 18-Dec-2020 14:03:20


This blog is the second part of my blog series on Managing an SAP IBP implementation and Rollout. Please refer to the first part of the blog here.

Challenges pertaining to the goals of the SAP IBP Implementation and Rollout projects:

“Change is hard because people overestimate the value of what they have and underestimate the value of what they may gain by giving that up.” – James Belasco and Ralph Stayer


  • On Time Execution
    • Indulging in person-specific requirement rather than a centralized solution
    • Missing participation of key stakeholders in project status meetings leaving key concerns or issues unaddressed and creating dependencies on these decisions.
    • Confusion and cross-over between the training timelines for process and SAP IBP
    • SAP IBP Quarterly upgrade schedule, as it is impossible to skip upgrades!
  • On Budget Execution
    • Never ending desire to automate everything or find a solution to every problem
    • Too much dependency on 1 resource
    • Everyone getting involved in everything! In other words, FOMO – Fear of Missing Out!
  • User-Satisfaction Index
    • Definition of business-critical requirement is unclear, as every requirement is treated as business critical at the end of the day
    • Growing Impatience about the lack of support and alternatives for certain functionalities compared to the current tool. Risk of parallel offline excels!
    • Lack of knowledge of what goes on in the project and the feeling of being less important in the project.
  • Continuous Improvement Process
    • Discouraging feedback process with no/little impact and/or no follow-ups!
    • Very little time for the users to voice their opinion. Most often, this is the 2-4-week time of user acceptance testing which is totally not cool in many organizations!
  • Return on Investment
    • A Big bang approach of trying to achieve everything at a greater cost of keeping the stakeholder confidence, project resources, timeline, and budget. In the end, it is a complex system that lacks the confidence of users!
    • Changing business dynamics since the project started till the project go-live
    • Losing the grip on master data quality
    • Losing the sight of the project goals and the expected value deliverables.

Are you facing any of the above listed issues or interested in the solutions? Contact us for the paper including solutions to the above. Below are some tips to tackle these challenges in SAP IBP implementation and rollout projects.

Blog Puzzle - IBP 2

  • Definition of the To-Be Process
    • With a solid understanding and walk-through of As-Is and To-Be process, utilize SAP IBP’s workflow like S&OP process chart feature to see how you can connect your processes, people, and technology. 
  • Minimum acceptance criteria
    • Choose a balanced and agreed approach that meets everyone’s minimum acceptance criteria when you define the planning area strategy, especially when you plan on implementing the foundation and then rollout the solution to multiple business units in your organization, or to enhance later
  • Setting the audience right!
    • (Re)Define the duties and responsibilities of the user
    • Address those user expectation’s that deviate vastly from your current ways of working and provide the reason
  • Data Management / Data Cleaning
    • As any new system, this is an opportunity to cleanse your data and start with a better picture. Identify the areas that needs cleansing and the extent to which the cleansing is required. There is a heavy impact on the cost, quality, and timeline of the project, especially once you integrate with source production systems
    • Clearly defined Integration scope if SAP IBP exchanges data with other systems and ensure data normalization principles are followed.
  • Training directions and documentation deliverables
    • Take stock of the SAP IBP delivered training contents like SAP RDS, SAP IBP Webinars and Z-Innovation discovery documents to get the basics right!


“The key to change … is to let go of fear.” – Rosanne Cash

The key to success is to ensure the active participation of the key stakeholders from the very beginning of the project and to ensure a healthy environment is provided to welcome any new ideas or concerns. You can also establish a forum to welcome ideas from the entire team or to share the meeting outcomes or project information to the entire team. Simple Proof of Concepts can help achieve greater cost savings and value benefits! Ensure that everyone in the organization have the same understanding of what to expect and in what timeframe. For example, the Forecast accuracy is not going to improve on the day 1 of go-live or your inventory levels are not going to become optimal on the day 1 of go-live. It takes time and support from a right consulting partner like us to deliver one!

With numerous SAP APO and SAP IBP implementations and rollout projects under my belt, I contribute my learnings to the supply chain community with a high note of positivity for next year!




Suresh Sellaiah is the DSC Technology Lead and has been with Olivehorse for over 4 years.