Successfully Navigating the Turbulent Skies of a Large-Scale ERP Implementation1
Case prepared by Professor Benoit A. AUBERT,2 Simon BOURDEAU3 and Brett WALKER4
This case presents two phases of a large business transformation project involving the implementation of an ERP system with the aim of creating an integrated company. The case illustrates some of the challenges associated with integration. It also presents the obstacles facing companies that undertake projects involving large information technology projects.
Bombardier and Its Environment
Joseph-Armand Bombardier was 15 years old when he built his first snowmobile by propelling a farm sleigh across snow with the engine from a Model T Ford (CBC Archives). From these humble beginnings, Bombardier went on to become a key player in the transportation industry. It entered the rail transportation market in 1974, with a contract to produce 423 subway cars for the City of Montreal. A contract to supply New York City with 825 subway cars followed eight years later (CanadianBusiness.com). Bombardier’s desire to diversify led it to enter the aerospace industry in 1986, when it purchased Canadair, the leading Canadian aircraft manufacturer. Bombardier acquired Short Brothers plc, a manufacturer of civil and military aircraft based in Northern Ireland, in 1989, and Lear Jet Corporation in 1990 (Koselka, 1992). Bombardier made its final major acquisition in the aerospace industry in 1992, with the purchase of the de Havilland Company from Boeing (a timeline is provided in Appendix 1). For the year ending January 31, 2007, Bombardier Limited reported revenues of $14.8 billion. The Aerospace and Transportation divisions contribute fairly equally to total revenues.
The authors would like to thank all the people at Bombardier who participated in the case study, with special thanks to Souad El Mallem and Robert Proulx for their exceptional contribution. The authors would also like to thank Nicolas Perreault and Alexander Schnepel for their help in conducting this study.
This research was supported by the CEFRIO.
Benoit A. Aubert is a Professor in Governance and Information Technologies at HEC Montréal.
Simon Bourdeau is a Ph.D. candidate at HEC Montréal.
Brett Walker is a Business Information Manager at Astellas Pharma Europe Ltd.
© HEC Montréal 2012
All rights reserved for all countries. Any translation or alteration in any form whatsoever is prohibited. The International Journal of Case Studies in Management is published on-line (www.hec.ca/revuedecas/en), ISSN 1911-2599. This case is intended to be used as the framework for an educational discussion and does not imply any judgement on the administrative situation presented. Deposited under number 9 65 2012 001 with the HEC Montréal Case Centre, 3000, chemin de la Côte-Sainte-Catherine, Montréal (Québec) Canada H3T 2A7.
Successfully Navigating the Turbulent Skies of a Large-Scale ERP Implementation
Bombardier Transportation posted revenues of $6.6 billion for the period ending January 31, 2007. This represented 45% of Bombardier Limited’s revenues. Bombardier Aerospace reported revenues of $8.2 billion for the same period, or 55% of total revenues. Bombardier Aerospace
Bombardier Aerospace is now the third largest designer and manufacturer of commercial aircraft in the world, after Boeing and Airbus, and the leading producer of regional aircraft. It is one of the two largest manufacturers of business aircraft in the world (Hoovers Online), with the widest range of business jets in the market (Canadian Business Resource). The Montreal-headquartered Aerospace division employs more than 27,130 people across 13 facilities worldwide (Bombardier – About Us). Six facilities are located in Canada, six in the United States, and one in Northern Ireland (Bombardier – About Us). The division’s management and administration employees are...
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BOMBARDIER INCORPORATED (nda). About us. Retrieved June 18, 2007, from:
BOMBARDIER INCORPORATED (nda). History. Retrieved April 28, 2004, from:
BOMBARDIER (2006). Annual Report, year ended January 31, 2006.
BOMBARDIER (2007). Annual Report, year ended January 31, 2007.
CANADIAN BROADCASTING CORPORATION (1990). Bombardier buys Learjet Corp.
CANADIAN BROADCASTING CORPORATION (2004). Bombardier: The snowmobile legacy
Retrieved April 27, 2004, from:
CANADIAN BUSINESS RESOURCE (2004)
EMBRAER WEB SITE (2007)
FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION (2004). FAA Aerospace Forecasts – Fiscal Years
FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION (2005). FAA Aerospace Forecasts – Fiscal years
GENERAL DYNAMICS (2005). Annual Report, 2005.
GOAD, G. Pierre (1989). “Bombardier to buy Short Brothers PLC from British government for
$50 million,” The Wall Street Journal, June 9, p
GOAD, G. Pierre (1990). “Bombardier Inc. agrees to buy assets, operation of Learjet for $75
million,” The Wall Street Journal.
KOSELKA, Rita (1992). “Let’s make a deal,” Forbes, 149, April 27, p. 62-63.
SIMONETTA, Joe (2004). Embraer-Empresa Brasileira de Aeronáutica S.A. Hoover’s Online.
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THE DE HAVILLAND DEAL (1993)
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