MARK JEFFERY AND JOSEPH F. NORTON
Ariba Implementation at MED-X:
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Chris, what do you mean, ZHFDQ¶WGHSOR\WKHV\VWHPRQWLPH",W¶VDPRQWKEHIRUHWKH HQGRIWKHSURMHFWDQGQRZ\RX¶UHWHOOLQJPHWKDWZHPD\QRWGHSOR\RQWLPH'R\RX NQRZZKDWWKLVPHDQV"'RQ¶W\RXXQGHUVWDQGZKDWWKHLPSOLFDWLRQVDUH",GRQ¶W understand what went wrong. This entire time I have been reviewing the budget variance and combined earned value reports and everything appeared to be fine. How am I going to explain this to the steering committee? I want to know what went wrong with the project and how you are going to fix it!
Terry Baker, CIO of MED-X Inc., a Fortune 500 pharmaceutical company, was furious. The e-procurement implementation she had been sponsoring was not going according to plan and the project manager had very few answers for her. Christopher Martin, a consultant from Implementation Technologies, was the project manager for the $2 million Ariba e-procurement implementation at MED-X Inc. This was 0DUWLQ¶VILUVWWLPHPDQDJLQJDIXOO-life-cycle e-procurement implementation and he was having problems figuring out what was delaying the project. He had been aware of some potentially troublesome events early in the project, but had not been comfortable reporting them to his client. Martin was very bright, had a great deal of technical development experience, and knew Ariba functionality ZHOO +H ZDV MXVW FRPSOHWLQJ KLV 0%$ LQ WKH PDQDJHU¶V SURJUDP DW WKH Kellogg School of Management, and was looking forward to a big raise when this project was over. However, Martin knew very little about earned value and had never seen it used in project analysis before. His client Terry Baker was demanding answers and Martin had to figure out what was going wrong.
The Ariba implementation was broken up into several phases. However, the critical path went through two major components of the project: technical infrastructure setup and software customization. Looking at the project plan alone, Martin could not figure out which component was causing the delay.
MED-X Inc. was a global pharmaceutical company headquartered in Houston, Texas, with fifty-four plants and more than 40,000 employees worldwide. Founded by a genetic engineering ©2006 by the Kellogg School of Management, NorthweVWHUQ8QLYHUVLW\7KLVFDVHZDVSUHSDUHGE\$OH[*HUVKEH\Q¶DQG'HUHN
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