February 26, 2013
Whirlpool Corporation – Giving ERP a Spin
1. How was the organization prepared for the change?
Whirlpool thought they were ready to go live with SAP until September 18, 1999. Whirlpool seemed to be making all the right moves, like dispatcher assignment, having centralized pricing, and vendor interfacing. Even the best laid plans don’t always work. Everything seemed to be going smoothly at first because there were only 1000 system users, once 4,000 users were on the system, performance deteriorated which lead to 4-8 weeks delivery delays to which some customer cancelled their order and went with a competitor. Whirlpool should never have gone live until they realized what impact the red flags meant.
2. Was the problem with employees, whose jobs had changed, dealt with properly? Whirlpools values are: respect, integrity, teamwork, learning to lead and spirit of winning, Whirlpool did not show any of qualities to their employees when requiring unreasonable timelines and insufficient or improper training. No employees were not dealt with properly, because where is the incentive for the service technicians who now need to add additional routes to their areas as well as handling more calls per day leading to unreasonable timelines. Also the call center workers who are now going to be required to answer more challenging questions with no training will lead to inexperienced or incompetent consultants.
3. How were the customers and vendors communicated with about the changed procedures for interfacing in various transactions with Whirlpool? Whirlpool started with four small and midsize vendors who were to use Easy EDI first then continued on to the 300 largest vendors. As stated by Best Buy who had no issues with filling their orders because they placed a large order in the summer to avoid getting snared in the computer conversion ¹ 4. How were IT employees prepared for interfacing with external...
Bibliography: “Whirlpool Hits Shipping Delays over Glitch in SAP Software” Wall Street Journal, December 3, 1999, http://online.wsj.com/article/SB941595437640862948.djm.html
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