Oracle e-Business Suite is an important supporting system for the dynamics of a growing company.
Ceres is a well-established brand in chocolate and confectionary food industry. Ceres’ products can be easily found in any stores, big or small, in big cities or villages. Now, there are well-known 27 brands produced Ceres like Silver Queen, Wafer Briko, Top, Ritz, Delfi, Chunky, and the legendary Meises Seres. With all the brands Ceres managed to beat its competitors.
Ceres long history started in the 40’s in Garut, a small town on the east of Bandung. The founder of the company was a Netherland’s who started with a home industry named NV Ceres.
At the beginning, there were only few employees who worked at the company. But the company strong focus in the business brought it to its success. NV Ceres’ among earliest product, the meises Ceres, have even managed to change the way Indonesians had their breakfast.
Information Integration and Accuracy
How Ceres is managed nowadays is certainly different with how the company was run in the old days. Now with factories in two locations and a broad distribution network, a reliable IT system is needed to help run the company says Ceres’ IT Manager Arief Gunawan. Moreover when in 2012, the currently Singapore based company decided to went public at the Singapore Exchange. One of the requirements required the company to use certified management tools.
Arief, who is responsible in assuring reliable IT support had to look for the right system that can support the company's business. With all the available options, Arief decided to choose Oracle e-Business Suite as Ceres’ IT system backbone.
“We have two criteria to meet, it should be certified and flexible development aspect to serve our business dynamics,” says Arief.
Certified system will improve the management confidence in running the company. While the flexibility in development will make the business runs dynamically without having the worries that the system will not able to keep up. And the two areas are where Oracle leads. “From a technical perspective, Oracle is an open Enterprise Resource Planning. We can customize the system to adjust with our business so it won’t be a hassle is we have a new requirement from the user,” says Arief.
Arief use the analogy of a car to describe Oracle EBS. “We can modify it as our needs. We can tune up or tune down the throttle. And we know where all the bolts are located, which differentiate it with other ERP,” says Arief.
As expected, Ceres business run smooth after implementing Oracle EBS.
The first positive impact happens to the integration aspect. All managerial aspects like financial, manufacturing, inventory and procurement are now integrated in one system that can be easily monitored. This resulted in significant improvement in control accountability where then it contributes to the second positive impact, which is boosting the management confidence towards information accuracy.
Full Support and Commitment
The Oracle EBS implementation process in Ceres took 10 months from January to November 2002. During the implementation, Ceres was assisted by PT Mitra Integrasi Informatika (MII).
“There were 30 employees from Ceres that was involved in the implementation process, 5 from IT and the rest are key users from different division,” says Arief.
It was not easy to involve many people with different background. But the implementation process ran on schedule so that in November 1st, 2002 the Oracle EBS officially go live in Ceres.
“Yes we struggled, the implementation of a big application software needed all out efforts from everyone, everyone has to have a strong commitment,” says Arif.
And the commitment is a key for the successful implementation of Oracle EBS in Ceres. The commitment was shown not just by everyone who was direct involved but also from the top management. In the end, everything was on schedule and Oracle EBS managed to integrate all the management aspects in the company.
Choosing PT Mitra Integrasi Informatika
There were mere obstacles met during the implementation process of Oracle EBS in Ceres. Despite the complexity, the enthusiasm and strong will to learn in a limited time contributed to the success of the process.
Other contributing factor according to Ceres was MII contribution as implementation partner. Arif admits that during and after the implementation, MII constantly gives all the support needed.
MII was chosen as implementer partner after a tight consideration such as having the certification, good track record, economic aspects, and the last but not least the right chemistry. Arief sees the implementation process will take time, thus it might not run smooth without having the right chemistry. And it was proven by all the support given by MII, even after the implementation process.