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AGILE for SAP ERP implementation?

With reference to my post under the same title I like to ask for the practical experiences – my experiences with leaving the open blueprint and later (during realization stage) modifications of specification by SAP ERP implementation are bad. This is of course possible and sometimes necessary but – in my opinion – requires very smart project management. What is your opinion and experiences?

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4 Answers

  • author's profile photo
    Former Member
    Posted on Jun 24, 2013 at 11:24 AM

    Waldemar,

    Blueprints are simply contracts that are used to punish users for giving their honest opinion about how real software fits their real world. I believe the only time a business really understands whether a configuration will work in their environment is when they try to use it. You can't "use" blueprints. They are only a representation of the solution.

    I believe the Realization phase should be looked at as the time when the Blueprint gets updated to reflect reality. It shouldn't be thought of as the period where the Blueprint is implemented.

    The challenge is how do you spend the minimum amount of time and energy to get to the point where real users have something real to evaluate? A related challenge is how do you "contain" the number and types of changes that you allow those users to make to the system? Those are the real project management challenges.

    Sam

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    • Dee Cee Waldemar Falinski

      Hi Waldemar,

      As far as New Implementation of SAP ERP is concerned - I totally agree with the assessment. Having said that, I again agree with you that we can potentially use a combination of ASAP & Agile for SAP ERP New Implementations which might be more effective.

      Agile, can be only effective for a set of activities in a phase. Like you said -> ASAP which has “boring” waterfall method and Agile methods will help only in some subsets or areas.

      I have been in projects involving each of them separately and I think Agile does not fit as a overall solution at all for any New Implementation.

      Coming to what Sam was saying, my point is that a Blueprint is a Blue Print. What we can bring additional into a Blueprint is a seriousness into the details of -> Business Process Listing, Process Flows, Detailed Use Cases, as many process exceptions as possible, Etc..

      At this stage, we should have the main foundation pillars of the Enterprise called as Enterprise Structure to fruition. We should have that clarity. We cannot use a build as you go approach because we are building Pillars and Foundations of the Enterprise that potentially stay for a long long time - technically till the company is living.

      My two cents.

      Thanks.

  • Posted on Jul 15, 2013 at 02:01 PM

    Waldemar,

    I suggest you to review the Agile ASAP methodology. It provides clear description of how to do visual blueprinting. It definitely does not leave the scope definition or blueprint open until Realization stage. Even in pure SCRUM projects you start with definition of the backlog which is exactly what we do in the front end of the project.

    We do either Scope Validation (in case we have a good baseline build that we can start with) or Lean Blueprinting which has objective of completing the backlog of work for the Realization stage. Where we differ is that the full design work is not done in Blueprint, but rather some of the more fine elements are left for Realization. This gives the team ability to better react to changing requirements resulting from end-users (product owner) understanding the solution capabilities better. We also recommend to use value based decision making about modifications or enhancements.

    I assume that your main concern is scope management after the backlog is completed. This is especially important in relationships where customers contract companies to deliver the solution. In my mind the fact that the methodology is open to product owner introducing changes does not preclude the contractor from adhering to the contracted scope and handle any out of scope items as scope change requests.

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  • Posted on Oct 26, 2014 at 10:23 PM

    Dear Colleagues,



    first I like to thank you for for participation in the discussion! I’ve learned a lot and I started to write some kind of summary of my private research started with this discussion:

    AGILE for SAP implementation? Yes of course!

    I can conclude: the discussion is coming very often to the point of contract – and contracts are inevitable in business. Next post will be about contracts and the question: do the organization like to learn (and change as the result of learning) or like to have clear and very detailed contract which de-facto excludes the learning during the project? Do the company like to be agile or not? PRINCE2 and Agile are about to enable learning and change.

    SCRUM is strictly described methodology destined for coding - that is no wonder that incorporation of SCRUM by ASAP was made as compromise. I am fully committed to that SCRUM is bringing a lot of positive energy into SAP projects (because that all sexy-stuff like artifacts and rituals) and that was great idea and work to incorporate SCRUM into ASAP. I like use this opportunity to thank you Jan and your team for this!

    The question if that is still SCRUM (in Agile ASAP) or not because of some abbreviations, is in my opinion not so important as the project methodology has to be effective.

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  • author's profile photo
    Former Member
    Posted on May 11, 2015 at 04:37 PM

    Waldemar,

    Take a look at this eBook

    I think you may find some really useful tips that outline some real-world practical advice on how to move to a more agile SAP delivery model.

    How to run Agile Development for SAP

    Cheers,

    Olly

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