Honda Scooter and Motorcycle India kick-starts its SAP refresh with IBM

Published on 18-Apr-2012

Validated on 01 Oct 2013

"With IBM DB2 and SAP ERP Central Component, we’ve gained the high reliability and security we wanted." - Sudhansu Maharana, Department Head of the Strategic Information System, Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India

Customer:
Honda Scooter and Motorcycle India

Industry:
Automotive

Deployment country:
India

Solution:
BA - Business Intelligence, Information Integration, Small & Medium Business, Information Infrastructure, Optimizing IT

IBM Business Partner:
SAP

Overview

Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India (HMSI) is the wholly owned Indian subsidiary of the Honda Motor Company. HMSI was established as a wholly-owned two-wheeler production and sales subsidiary of Honda in 1999 and began production in 2001. HMSI has grown steadily, with sales of approximately 1.526 million units in 2010-11, an increase of 40 percent over the previous year.

Business need:
Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India had previously deployed its SAP ERP software with an Oracle database running on a HP server landscape. However, this legacy system did not provide the company with its desired level of availability, performance and data security. As a result, many of its staff had to work beyond normal office hours to get their work done. The company wanted to upgrade its SAP software and refresh its legacy hardware to increase the visibility of its business processes, improve efficiency, and lower costs.

Solution:
Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India implemented a new hardware landscape comprising IBM Power Systems servers running IBM AIX version 6.1. Data is backed up to an IBM System Storage TS3200 Tape Library using Veritas Enterprise Backup services. The company migrated its SAP data from an Oracle database to IBM DB2 version 9.5, and upgraded its SAP software from SAP R/3 Enterprise to SAP ERP Central Component.

Benefits:
Reduced expensive overtime. Automated most standard maintenance tasks. Enabled system administratos to focus on higher value tasks. Increased efficiency.

Case Study

Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India (HMSI) is the wholly owned Indian subsidiary of the Honda Motor Company. HMSI was established as a wholly-owned two-wheeler production and sales subsidiary of Honda in 1999 and began production in 2001. HMSI has grown steadily, with sales of approximately 1.526 million units in 2010-11, an increase of 40 percent over the previous year.

Availability, performance and security challenges

HMSI had previously deployed its SAP® ERP software on an Oracle database running on an HP server. However, this legacy system did not provide the company with its desired level of availability, performance and data security. Sudhansu Maharana, Department Head of the Strategic Information System at HMSI, comments, “Our legacy system suffered from a number of problems, the most significant of which were security vulnerabilities. We had to repair these on an ad hoc basis, which caused a lot of system downtime. The performance of the system was also inadequate. As a result, many of our staff had to work beyond normal office hours to get their work done. These problems threatened to encroach on the operation of our business, so finding a solution was a high priority.”

As part of the Honda Motor Company, HMSI has a responsibility to adopt the best practices of its parent company.

“In the past, we used SAP ERP with functionalities for Financials and Controlling and SAP ERP Human Capital Management on an HP server running Windows 2000 and Oracle database software,” continues Sudhansu Maharana.

“When SAP ERP Central Component 6 arrived, we saw an opportunity to use its new features to improve our business forecasting and customer service in line with the rest of the company.”

HMSI wanted a fully integrated management solution to increase the visibility of its business processes, improve efficiency and productivity levels, and reduce costs in accordance with Honda Motor’s worldwide objectives. Additionally, it sought to upgrade its outdated database and server infrastructure in order to maximize the performance of the new SAP software. In order to achieve this, the company needed to upgrade its SAP software and refresh its legacy hardware.

Getting into gear with SAP ERP Central Component

After looking at a number of vendors, HMSI engaged IBM® to implement a professional solution. “We chose IBM primarily because of their enormous experience and easily available local consulting team,” says Sudhansu Maharana. “Their 30-year relationship with SAP was also a determining factor – IBM was able to offer us a one stop shop for our total IT solution at a very attractive price point.”

IBM implemented a new hardware landscape comprising IBM Power Systems™ servers running IBM AIX® version 6.1. SAP data is backed up to an IBM System Storage® TS3200 Tape Library using Veritas Enterprise Backup services. HMSI’s legacy Oracle database was replaced by IBM DB2® version 9.5, and the company upgraded its SAP software from R/3® Release 4.70 to SAP ERP Central Component. The initial migration was performed in windows of planned downtime over a period of two months, with the SAP upgrade completed after a further two months.

Making the move to IBM DB2

The decision to upgrade to IBM DB2 was motivated in large part by the database platform’s close integration with SAP ERP Central Component. As a strategic platform for SAP, IBM DB2 is optimized for SAP environments.

Deep collaboration between SAP and IBM teams, including common database development and support strategies, also ensures that the quality of the DB2 platform for SAP is highly stable.

IBM DB2’s fast performance, high availability and low total cost of ownership were also strong selling points for HMSI. “We were very impressed with the IBM DB2 database software,” explains Sudhansu Maharana. “DB2 requires far less maintenance than we’d become accustomed to, and has proven to be highly secure, reliable and efficient. IBM DB2 really helps us to get the most out of our SAP software and at a lower total cost of ownership than an equivalent Oracle database.”

Revving up performance

Refreshing its hardware infrastructure with IBM technology and upgrading to the latest version of SAP has enabled HMSI to improve its application performance by 40 percent, increasing the efficiency of its business processes. “Before we implemented our IBM solution, our users were suffering a number of performance- and availability-related issues,” says Sudhansu Maharana. “With IBM Power Systems servers, we’ve all but eliminated unplanned downtime, which means our people no longer have to work beyond normal office hours due to IT problems during the day.”

HMSI also benefits from lower annual database maintenance costs, licensing fees and infrastructure costs, with servicing provided by IBM at a competitive price.

“With IBM DB2 and SAP ERP Central Component, we’ve gained the high reliability and security we wanted,” says Sudhansu Maharana. “Using SAP together with DB2, we’ve increased performance and compressed our database by 50 percent. Additionally, with SAP DBA Cockpit we’ve managed to reduce the database administration workload by 25 percent, which frees our maintenance team to focus on additional maintenance tasks. Our DB2 database effectively handles most standard maintenance tasks automatically, so there is very limited work for the database administrator.”

“Today, we have the fast performance and full application support we need to drive our business forward,” concludes Sudhansu Maharana. “In addition to the ability to integrate SAP with home-grown applications such as our Employee Portal and Manufacturing and Sales system, with DB2 Database Partitioning we can add additional SAP modules in the future, confident in the knowledge that we have a secure, stable and scalable IT platform.”

Products and services used

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

Hardware:
Power Systems, Power Systems running AIX 6, Storage, Storage: TS3200 Tape Library

Software:
DB2 for AIX, AIX

Operating system:
AIX

Service:
IBM-SAP Alliance

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