The worldwide biggest SAP HCM system went live in Dec 2008, in CNPC and PetroChina. This is not a news anymore. However, it is still one the most significant events in my SAP carrier over the past 15 years. I played the role of SAP Expert in the project. I am proud that I am involved in the project to provide expert advise, solution guidance and technical support. What is more to me? I learned a lot from it too.
There are number of points you may find distinctive and significant about the project:
– It is the biggest SAP HCM system in single installation in the world with millions of employee master records. I shouldn’t provide a more exact number for not disclosing customer’s business sensitive information. However I believe it is the biggest so far to my best knowledge.
– It is utilizing the most recent SAP solutions and technologies, including EEC6.0, Org Management, Personnel Administration, Time Management, Payroll, Training & Personnel Development, Performance Management, e-Recruiting, HR Processes and Forms, Self Services, BI, Management Cockpit etc.
– It went live within 3 years. I consider implementation period is short for its complexity with hundreds of subsidiaries / branches with different business processes. Add to that, there are typically 3 to 4 different levels of HR users from top to bottom with different focus, perspective and requirements. Some other challenges you will see below.
– People, solution and system consolidations had happened half way in the project. Started as 2 separate projects PetroChina and CNPC in the beginning and middle of 2006 respectively, there were 2 teams of consulting partners (IBM and Accenture respectively), IT support (by 2 different subsidiaries) and business users (2 lines of HR personnel systems) . At the beginning of 2008, CNPC and PetroChina HR departments were consolidated into one at all levels, thus the system supporting the business behind would have to consolidate too. (What had been well prepared and lucky for that change? Both projects were managed by the same IT Department at the top level; both projects were based on SAP solutions and supported by the same expert from SAP. That expert was me!)
– Consultants from two worldwide competitors IBM and Accenture were working together, face to face, side by side, back to back. They worked harmoniously in the same SAP system, in the same conference room, to conquer the same issues/difficulties, to moved towards the same target. “One Team, One Dream” was the project slogan. Sounds familiar? Yes, it was raised in the year of 2008, the year of Beijing Olympic Games. Do you remeber? It’s slogan was “One World, One Dream”.
There are many contributing factors for success of the project. The top success factors, in my point of view, among others are: Top executives driving and support; unified corporate IT development principle and strategies; highest project targets and standards; strong and dynamic project management; corporation from various parties within and outside of CNPC /PetroChina including implementation partners and SAP.
I think you agree with me that a good management IT system cannot be accomplished in one step and for all. Efforts will continue to strengthen and deepen the use of system along business evolving. I wish CNPC /PetroChina and its SAP HCM system continued success!