GORAZDZE CEMENT S.A., leading cement producer and member of Heidelberger Cement Group, has implemented SAP R/3 and it has decided to continue developing its information technologies towards replacing paper documents with electronic documents.
DMS implementation for SAP R/3 is solving the wide area of workflow:
- the users access securing,
- documents sharing among individual users,
- attributes retrieval,
- detailed procedure of the approval process and document archiving.
Led by Andrzej Chalupka, IT Manager, the management first decided to replace the circulation of paper invoices with circulation of scanned documents using SAP R/3 as the distribution system. The question was what would be the best way to ensure conversion of paper documents into electronic form and how to incorporate electronic documents into the SAP R/3 workflow?
IXOS SOFTWARE s.r.o. seated in Prague (branch of global company IXOS focusing on the Central and East European countries) has been selected as the solution provider. This decision, which at the same time meant entry of IXOS to the Polish market, was made considering the long-term experience and position of IXOS as the leading supplier on the market with Document Management Systems (DMS) for SAP R/3.
However, IXOS was not unknown to GORAZDZE Cement. Companies within the Heidelberger Cement group are known for their regional cooperation and the IT personnel of GORAZDZE Cement were thus able to obtain details about successful IXOS implementation by affiliate company Českomoravský cement.
Consultants of IXOS Praha found a great team of SAP R/3 specialists in GORAZDZE Cement. These specialists were involved in the initial project analysis and they also actively participated in implementation and training of their own users.
“Language was never a barrier”, says Tomáš Hyjánek, chief IXOS consultant responsible for the solution supply.
Professional issues regarding SAP R/3 were discussed in English, but the discussion with key system users was often in Czech – Polish.
This was very important because a DMS system implementation is always connected with a significant change in the company’s way of working. Companies want to use electronic documents, however, mainly in the project assignment phase, they rarely understand the scope of issues relating to such implementation.
This is seen often in the fields of user access securing and documents sharing among individual users, security, authorizations, attributes retrieval, or detailed procedure of the approval process.
- Incoming paper invoices are designated with a bar code and scanned using IXOS-Enterprise Scan scanning client.Once scanned, individual documents are archived. Archiving is controlled from SAP R/3 environment where the scanner operator also performs basic classification of the documents.
- The archived document is stored on IXOS for SAP archive server and its link is stored as a SAP workflow item. The document can be retrieved in SAP using the bar code.
- Documents – invoices are routed to distributors – heads of accounting departments using the SAP workflow. These persons subsequently process the invoices.
- The distributors direct the workflow documents to individual accountants in their departments who perform final classification of each invoice and either send the invoice for approval or post it depending on the signature rules of the company.
- Approval also happens through SAP workflow. Approval record is linked to the archived document.
- Posted invoices are linked with the scanned document. This way, it is possible to view the scanned original and/or other related documents when working with the item in SAP.
To facilitate the work with SAP for the new users (mainly for the management), another solution component has been implemented: IXOS – DocuLink. This component significantly facilitates the work with SAP for the users familiar with the MS Windows environment. Individual documents from the business process (for example procurement) are arranged in interconnected folders and only several mouse clicks are required to locate all purchase orders, receipt notes, and (SES) relating to the particular invoice in the MM module. Archived original documents and archived SAP output documents are also displayed in folders for relevant SAP document.
IXOS software has learned Polish and GORAZDZE Cement has opened its way towards using the electronic documents in its commercial process thus making a significant step towards the paper-free company.