Sauder Woodworking

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The experience levels of the itelligence COE team were at the core of our success. The team’s conversion experience from other projects set us up for a remarkable success story. If you are looking for a smooth technical conversion from ECC to SAP S/4HANA, consider itelligence.

Jan Arvay, VP Information Systems, Sauder Woodworking Co.

Sauder Woodworking Co. is North America’s leading producer of ready-to-assemble (RTA) furniture and one of the top five residential furniture manufacturers in the United States. An authentic American original, 90 percent of Sauder® furniture is manufactured in Archbold, Ohio — right where the company was founded in 1934.

Challenges and Benefits

Challenges

  • Convert from SAP ECC within a 72-hour downtime window
  • "Lift and shift" APO PPDS into SAP S/4HANA embedded PPDS
  • Turn on Fiori apps where new functionality was required to run the business
  • Minimal user disruption and change management

Benefits

  • Systems converted over Memorial Day weekend, within the 72-hour window
  • Cut-over went very smoothly, with minimal disruption to the business
  • Project was delivered on time and within budget

Solutions

  • SAP S/4HANA (on-premise)
  • SAP Enterprise Support Services
  • SAP Value Assurance Service Package

Sauder Woodworking

Sauder Woodworking Makes Strategic Decision to Convert to SAP S/4HANA

About the Project

Sauder Woodworking Makes Strategic Decision to Convert to SAP S/4HANA

Sauder Woodworking Co. is North America’s leading producer of ready-to-assemble (RTA) furniture and one of the top five residential furniture manufacturers in the United States. An authentic American original, 90 percent of Sauder® furniture is manufactured in Archbold, Ohio — right where the company was founded in 1934.

Although the town is small (pop. 4,300), Sauder’s facility is expansive. With some of the most technologically advanced equipment in the world, the facility features nearly 4 million square feet of space, employs about 2,000 workers and houses a wide variety of local and imported materials. Sauder also sources furniture from a network of quality global partners.

Sauder is a privately held, third-generation, family run business, marketing more than 40 distinct furniture collections in a full line of RTA furnishings for the home, including entertainment, home office, bedroom, kitchen and storage. Its subsidiaries include: Progressive Furniture Inc., a designer and importer of wood bedroom, dining and accent furniture; and Sauder Manufacturing Company, a leader in church, educational and healthcare seating. Other market segments include Sauder Funeral Products, a line of wood caskets and other funeral industry products; and WoodTrac®, a line of wood ceilings and closet systems for residential and commercial markets.

Why Make the Move?

Sauder Woodworking made the choice to be an early adopter of SAP S/4HANA in order to position itself to take advantage of new functionality rather than building solutions in-house. The company wanted to set its own timeline to optimize its use of the new S/4HANA suite, rather than defer and be rushed to change modules as support began to drop off on the older ECC solution.

Sauder had already invested several years to move from a legacy system to SAP ECC. They wanted to save money on implementation costs and get to SAP S/4HANA quickly so they could glean value from the new product suite. The project covered the movement of all ECC data and functionality (configuration) and PPDS systems to SAP S/4HANA 1709, HANA 2.0.

The company has a large footprint of SAP systems, with over 1,600 users conducting business transactions and shop floor employees interacting with SAP via MII or through RF terminals. In 2018, Sauder processed 1,661,225 sales orders, 1,624,169 shipments, 894,664 production receipts, 14,438,089 warehouse moves, and 1,624,684 invoices through the SAP system. It is the company’s back-end business processing machine.

This was also a major technology infrastructure transformation for the Sauder IT technical team, as they moved from their legacy IBM iSeries systems to a completely new platform. The new system runs on Dell servers and SANs in a VMware virtual environment, so the Sauder team had to learn new concepts and tools to support the new system. Thanks to a long-term partnership with Symmetry, their outsourced SAP Basis team, Sauder did not have to make the move on their own.

What’s Next?

Now that Sauder Woodworking is running on SAP S/4HANA, they are well positioned to assist and enable the strategic goals of the business. They plan to optimize their use of S/4HANA in phases, starting with Finance.

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