Photo of Marcus Kiene, Serrala, Ridoune El Azizi and Arkadius Stroda, thyssenkrupp AG.
A first class relationship between thyssenkrupp and its technology vendor helped it revolutionise its disparate and complex IT infrastructure and build a best in class IT infrastructure.
Group Processes and Information Technology
Duisburg and Essen, Germany
thyssenkrupp AG is a German multinational conglomerate and one of the world’s largest steel producers. Based in Duisburg and Essen, Germany, the business is divided into almost 500 subsidiaries worldwide.
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First-rate vendor relationship revolutionalises thyssenkrupp’s technology infrastrucutre
Diversified industrials major thyssenkrupp was blighted by a disparate and highly complex IT architecture comprised of over 100 SAP ERP systems and over 150 non-SAP ERP systems. To make matters worse, these different ERPs had their own interfaces with over 2,000 bank accounts around the world.
Complexity, lack of standardisation, lack of connectivity and lack of automation created many problems. This included a lack of visibility over the company’s cash positions, the need to conduct many processes manually and an extremely lengthy and painful process whenever they needed to change anything.
A group-wide project – codenamed daproh – was launched in 2015. Focusing on data and process harmonisation, it provided the catalyst for treasury to begin to solve these issues and build a global payments platform.
With the company looking to move to a single instance of SAP, the treasury team had to devise a way of creating a central platform that would enable it to standardise, warehouse and utilise all the data on the disparate ERP systems. Spotting an opportunity, Peter Kellner, Group Processes and Information Technology, also wanted to move away from ad hoc host-to-host (H2H) connectivity with the banks, instead of using EBICS or SWIFT to communicate with the Group’s banks from the central ERP.
To achieve its objectives, thyssenkrupp has adopted a host of Serrala’s modules. One of the key components was the payments solution which gives thyssenkrupp the ability to seamlessly connect its disparate ERP systems to the new central ERP whilst these are phased out.
To do this, the solution takes the data from the old ERP systems and converts it into a standardised format that is compatible with the latest version of SAP S/4HANA the company is using. In the next step it converts the data in the global CGI format (ISO 20022) that will now be the standard for the interfaces from the central ERP to all banks. This has enabled thyssenkrupp to optimise existing processes without having to wait for the full company-wide migration to be completed, and the bank interfaces could be optimised by using the global CGI standard.