L&T–CASE engineers faster production

With SAP and IBM

Published on 18-Apr-2012

Validated on 01 Oct 2013

"The capacity and scalability of the x3650 enable L&T-CASE to plan for additional throughput and, if necessary, further extension of its SAP applications. L&T-CASE is very satisfied with the SAP applications and IBM System x3650 infrastructure powered by Intel Xeon processors, and we are well placed to handle the workload." - Mr S K Sethia, DGM-IT, L&T-Case

Customer:
L&T–CASE

Industry:
Industrial Products, Construction / Architecture / Engineering

Deployment country:
India

Solution:
Enterprise Resource Planning, High Availability , Information Integration, Small & Medium Business, Optimizing IT

IBM Business Partner:
SAP

Overview

A joint venture of Larsen & Toubro Ltd and CNH Global NV, L&T–CASE manufactures and sells construction and road-building equipment. Based in Pithampur, India, the company operates multiple production sites as well as working with subcontractor locations across the country.

Business need:
Indian engineering giant L&T–CASE operated separate production planning, materials management and financial solutions to run its large and geographically diverse operations Monitoring and reconciling finances against work was a constant challenge.

Solution:
L&T-CASE chose to implement integrated SAP ERP software to manage the complete production and financial administration process, based on IBM System x® 3650 class servers.

Benefits:
By implementing the new SAP ERP production planning and materials management software on the IBM System x3650 class servers, L&T-CASE has improved both business efficiency and the availability of its business-critical IT platform, offering better than 99.9 percent uptime.

Case Study

A joint venture of Larsen & Toubro Ltd and CNH Global NV, L&T–CASE manufactures and sells construction and road-building equipment. Based in Pithampur, India, the company operates multiple production sites as well as working with subcontractor locations across the country.

L&T-CASE is expanding fast as the Indian economy continues to grow, resulting in positive national investment in transport infrastructure. The company used separate software systems to manage its production, inventory and financial solutions, resulting in a complex web of interlinked systems and a large measure of manual, paper-based record-keeping.

Mr S K Sethia, DGM-IT, explains the difficulties caused: “In many cases we send materials to specialist subcontractors. The vendors pay 50 percent of the materials value to L&T-CASE, to ensure that we are protected against loss, and to avoid the potential drain on cash flow. When the finished goods are received at L&T-CASE, the subcontractor charges the full amount for their service.

“The materials and finished goods are in constant flow between the subcontractors and L&T-CASE. Production planning and materials management processes were controlled by specialist software solutions. At any moment we have approximately 50 projects in progress each worth some INR8 million (about $150,000), totaling INR400 million ($7.5 million). The financial solution, though, was separate, and all the goods movement data had to be checked and agreed manually using complex, linked spreadsheets, and it was very difficult to reconcile figures.”

Lack of integration hinders growth

As the company grew, the manual reconciliation procedure was a barrier to progress. Figures were slow to arrive, were a source of dispute and revision, and were perceived as unreliable. It was important to accelerate the information flow and provide validated data, so that subcontractors and L&T-CASE understood the true financial position.

With timely, accurate data, L&T-CASE would be able to identify and eliminate costs, and ensure work was placed with the most cost-efficient subcontractors. Additionally, by integrating production planning with the core business applications, L&T-CASE would be able to use the subcontractors’ materials requests and delivery data to drive its manufacturing operations to ensure that the company – even with an extensive network of external vendors – would respond as a single unit to customer demand.

Building a business case

L&T-CASE was running SAP financial, controlling, quality management, and SAP Extended Warehouse Management (SAP EWM) applications, and the executive team understood the benefits of integrated software. Working with IBM, the L&T-CASE team considered integrating its existing solutions or implementing SAP applications and tailoring them to its specific needs.

“The IBM team was very capable,” says Mr Sethia. “IBM completed a study that clearly identified the gaps between the operational and financial processes, and how these could be bridged. The result was a full business case, describing the possible software options, the impact on L&T-CASE, and the potential solutions.”

At the time, L&T-CASE supported some 200 users of its SAP applications, with an Oracle production database of around 300 GB. The company provided a portal for its subcontractors and other partners, and both the portal and occasionally the core SAP instances suffered from poor response times. It was clear that the existing IT HP server infrastructure would not be capable of supporting the additional workload reliably or with acceptable performance. The IBM team recommended that L&T-CASE review its IT infrastructure, with business growth in mind and the potential for adding business warehousing and analytics features in future.

Supporting SAP applications with IBM System x

L&T-CASE chose to implement new SAP production, test and portal servers on three IBM System x® 3650 M3 servers, duplicated to a further three identical x3650 servers at a second data center for failover and disaster recovery purposes.

IBM System x3650 M3 servers are designed to deliver higher performance per watt, offer simplified management and serviceability, and provide reduced business risk. The energy-efficient design supports multiple processor cores and up to 288 GB of memory in a scalable 2U package, with a simple upgrade path to 16 hard disk drives or solid state drives. The x3650 M3 is powered by up to two 3.46 GHz six-core or 3.60 GHz four-core Intel Xeon 5600 series processors with QuickPath Interconnect technology.

The Intel Xeon processor 5600 series automatically regulates power consumption and intelligently adjusts server performance according to application needs. The 5600 series processors deliver up to 15 times the performance per server when compared with typical two-socket single-core servers, enabling significant server consolidation, up to 95 percent lower energy costs, and an estimated return on investment in as little as five months.

L&T-CASE is able to rely on these enormously powerful and reliable servers to provide the capacity to run the expanded SAP application landscape, including production planning and materials management, with sufficient performance headroom to provide fast portal response, too.

Better business efficiency

By implementing the new SAP ERP production planning and materials management on the IBM System x3650 M3 servers, L&T-CASE has improved both business efficiency and the availability of its business-critical IT platform, offering better than 99.9 percent uptime. The company has eliminated manual, spreadsheet-based reconciliations of its work-in-progress with its finances, and now uses the integrated SAP applications. The x3650 is able to complete the process within a matter of hours, and L&T-CASE can provide data to dealers, subcontractors and the management team, always certain that the figures are correct.

Mr Sethia concludes, “The capacity and scalability of the x3650 enable L&T-CASE to plan for additional throughput and, if necessary, further extension of its SAP applications. L&T-CASE is very satisfied with the SAP applications and IBM System x3650 infrastructure powered by Intel Xeon processors, and we are well placed to handle the workload.”

Products and services used

IBM products and services that were used in this case study.

Hardware:
System x, System x: System x3650 M3

Operating system:
Win NT/2003

Service:
IBM-SAP Alliance

Legal Information

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