IMG Americas is Respironics’ global implementation partner for SAP Business One, SAP’s affordable and integrated business management solution. The Respironics Italy go-live follows the successful implementation at Pilger Homecare, Respironics’ joint venture in Switzerland, which launched Respironics’ global rollout of SAP Business One. Respironics projects it will continue SAP Business One rollouts to other domestic and international business units. IMG Americas announced the go-live in Italy at the Chicago SAP Business Forum (Westin O’Hare).
“As the leader in the sleep, home, and hospital respiratory markets, Respironics is growing at a rapid rate,” says Ed Pisula, director of Corporate Information Technology at Respironics. “SAP Business One is key to our growth. It has the right level of functionality providing integration points with our SAP enterprise resource planning [ERP] software, it’s easy to use, and provides end-to-end business processes for our users with operations visibility from our corporate headquarters to our business units,” continued Pisula. “Equally important is the ability to get these business units up and running as quickly as possible and IMG Americas helps make that happen.”
“IMG Americas is part of a select and international partner network helping SAP customers quickly derive value from SAP Business One,” says Ralf Mehnert-Meland, director of Business Development at SAP. “The ability to have a common platform on which to standardize operations across multiple locations and provide real-time access to critical data is a huge competitive advantage for small to midsize enterprises. And, this advantage can be quickly realized by SAP customers who implement SAP Business One with partners such as IMG.”
Globalization requires feet-on-the street expertise
SAP Business One is designed to be easy to use and quick to implement – oftentimes taking just weeks to deploy. Implementing the solution on a global scale, however, can present localization challenges that can impact go-lives. “Respironics’ growth is fueled, in part, by international mergers and acquisitions,” notes Larry Perlov, vice president of global SAP Business One accounts at IMG Americas. “Therefore, efficient and expedient localization is critical to realizing business goals. We’ve partnered with Respironics in Switzerland and Italy and are looking to extend this relationship in other Respironics business units. These SAP Business One implementations underscore how international companies use IMG’s global presence to their strategic advantage.”
“Business communications can be tough in multilingual environments with simple requests taking four times as long to get answered than if they were handled in your native language,” observes Pisula. “IMG knows how to work in multilingual environments and with different kinds of business people and practices to quickly homogenize business processes. And, they have the worldwide relationships to secure and deploy the right resources regardless of geography.”
Respironics Italy – Built from the ground up
Pisula notes that while the SAP Business One implementation in Italy was able to leverage the global blueprint that IMG developed at Respironcis Switzerland, Italian business practices and regulations do not totally mirror those in Switzerland and the implementation required some local configuration. Selling, distributing, installing and maintaining critical care ventilating equipment, Respironics Italy must calibrate and install products in compliance with Italian regulations. SAP Business One functionality was configured to address a range of local requirements including: banking and regulatory issues such as the Reporte Fiscali, an Italian government value-added tax report; order entry, invoicing, cash receipts, payables, and installation practices; and service management spanning service calls, regulatory compliance, and agreements.
Respironics Italy posed an additional challenge in that the physical office and operations were established in parallel to the SAP Business One implementation. “Respironics Italy was created pretty much from scratch by buying a customer list,” recalls Pisula. “All business processes were on paper and nothing was in practice, so while we were getting the physical operation up and running, IMG was launching the blueprint. It was a highly dynamic environment and IMG was always willing to make any course corrections required as we aligned operations with business processes. They have the domain expertise in SAP Business One combined with a global footprint that helped to accelerate the time-to-value of our SAP Business One implementation.”