Integrate Engineering Document Management and SAP...

Post by qellusweb
February 21, 2024
Integrate Engineering Document Management and SAP...

with OpenText Extended ECM for SAP - add-on for Capital Projects and Operations

Access to integrated business data is crucial for any successful initiative, especially when it comes to enhancing SAP processes within organizations. Despite significant investments in deploying SAP solutions to streamline operations and provide unified access to data, a critical issue often remains unaddressed: the accessibility of engineering documents and drawings trapped within disparate, departmental systems outside of SAP. This oversight undermines the very essence of SAP's purpose—to standardize processes and unlock valuable insights. Without seamless access to this essential data, the potential for driving operational efficiency and maximizing the benefits of SAP initiatives diminishes significantly, leaving untapped value within the organization.

Companies striving to optimize their SAP capital project, asset management, and plant maintenance implementations must confront the challenge of bridging the gap between centralized SAP systems and the decentralized repositories where vital engineering documents are housed. Failure to address this issue hampers operational efficiency and limits the organization's ability to leverage SAP's full potential. To truly succeed with SAP initiatives, businesses must prioritize the integration of engineering systems and ensure that users have unfettered access to the information necessary to support their processes and decision-making.
In essence, the success or failure of SAP initiatives hinges on the organization's ability to break down silos and democratize access to critical documents and data across the enterprise. By recognizing and addressing this fundamental issue, businesses can unlock the latent value within their SAP investments and propel themselves toward greater operational excellence and strategic advantage.

The case - written by Greg Hocamp 

I recently received an email from a company regarding their Extended ECM solution. We’ve discussed document management challenges with them in the past, but they had a specific challenge to address this time.  My contact there was striving to establish process standards that enable the company to utilize engineering documents and drawings across various departments, such as operations, maintenance, and procurement, who heavily rely on SAP for their daily activities.

Their challenge stems from the fact that multiple engineering teams are using different document management solutions. While this situation isn’t uncommon, it is causing significant hurdles, especially as the company pushed forward with a digital transformation initiative to standardize processes and make SAP the central ERP system. As a result, both procurement and plant maintenance functions require access to these engineering documents in a standardized manner accessible within SAP. They need a more integrated solution to address this issue effectively.

The solution to the challenge of integrating engineering documents with SAP processes is straightforward, but is often not well understood.  Based on their experience with OpenText ECM’s comprehensive document management platform, they knew it was designed to handle complex enterprise scenarios, yet were unfamiliar with the specific capabilities to support their engineering teams and the applications with which they are familiar. This sparked a question and prompted a deeper dive into understanding how Extended ECM could simultaneously address their organization's engineering and SAP document management needs.

One of the key benefits of OpenText Extended ECM for SAP and the add-on for Capital Projects and Operations, is that it provides a central enterprise repository that seamlessly integrates with leading applications like AutoCAD and SAP.  After reviewing the requirements, it became evident that this solution offered a holistic approach to their engineering document management needs and eliminated the need for users to navigate multiple systems and worry about storage, tagging, or retrieval processes. Instead, they could leverage familiar tools and interfaces to access and manage documents effortlessly.

The solution has two key components - Extended ECM for SAP and the Extended ECM for SAP Capital Projects add-on. The former provides the common Extended ECM platform, including document/records management, workflow, versioning, and integration with SAP. The latter is specifically tailored to the needs of engineering and capital project teams, offering features such as integration with AutoCAD, transmittal management, and controlled revision tracking. 

What truly sets the Extended ECM solution apart is its ability to enrich documents with metadata from their associated business objects within the leading application. This ensures that documents are stored centrally and linked to relevant processes and contexts, such as work orders or functional locations. This integration streamlines document access and facilitates collaboration across teams, regardless of their primary applications or departments.

The underlying data integration and revision control mechanisms embedded within Extended ECM provide a level of efficiency and accuracy that is unattainable with fragmented departmental solutions. This minimizes errors, ensures compliance, and enhances overall operational efficiency by maintaining a single, centralized copy of documents and enforcing version control through integrated workflows. It is a game-changer in the quest to bridge the gap between engineering and SAP processes, providing the seamless integration and robust functionality across engineering, operations, and procurement teams.

Ultimately, Extended ECM offered a solution to their immediate challenge and a paradigm shift in how we approach engineering document management and process integration. It is a testament to the power of the Extended ECM platform and working with a trusted partner that combines Extended ECM technical expertise with practical knowledge of SAP, engineering, and asset management processes.  

After all, isn’t what the writer of this email was looking for?

The solution, step-by-step

To address the challenges faced by this company, Qellus developed an approach aimed at seamlessly integrating engineering documents with SAP processes. 

Here's a breakdown of our current strategy:

  1. First, we are clarifying document requirements and scope, ensuring that all leading applications, process areas, and stakeholders are identified and understood. This step established a clear understanding of the scope and objectives.
  2. Next, we are identifying the business scenario on which to conduct a Proof of Concept and define success criteria. This PoC process typically spans multiple stakeholder groups and encompasses the entire asset lifecycle, from engineering to operations, and even procurement. By establishing criteria upfront, we ensure that everyone involved understands what success looks like and can work towards achieving it collaboratively.
  3. Based on the Proof of Concept results, we will collect feedback and identify adjustments to be made during implementation.  Not everything in the PoC will work exactly as they desire the first time, so we want to take the time to improve the design to make the final deployment results exceptional.  

By following this simple approach and leveraging the expertise of the Qellus team, the company is building confidence in the Extended ECM solution, removing the fears of their stakeholders, and, ultimately, enabling them to overcome the engineering document management challenges and unlock greater efficiency and productivity for their SAP, maintenance, and procurement users.

The Qellus team stands ready to assist

As a trusted Extended ECM implementation partner, we offer unparalleled expertise and insight gained from years of experience in the field. Our close collaboration with clients and our proven track record in similar scenarios make us the go-to partner for implementing Extended ECM solutions globally. Whether you want to streamline processes, enhance collaboration, or improve efficiency, we have the knowledge and resources to help you achieve your goals.

To learn more about how we can support your organization's needs, we invite you to visit our website for additional information on our Extended ECM for Engineering solutions. If you prefer a more interactive approach, we encourage you to schedule a meeting or connect on LinkedIn to arrange a short demo of our Extended ECM capabilities. Whatever your preferred method of engagement, the Qellus team is here to show you a better solution to your toughest engineering and asset document management challenges.


Have you thought about how to get more value out of your enterprise documents? What documents are shared across your organization and applications - and how might you get more value if you could seamlessly integrate them?  What would your users say?  Let me know in the comments here below.


Post by qellusweb
February 21, 2024