Below is an exerpt from the WSJ. Dan Hershey embarked on its computer project in 1996, partly to satisfy retailers who are demanding increasingly that suppliers fine-tune deliveries so that they can keep inventories -- and thus costs -- down. The company also faced year-2000 problems with its old computer system. The project called for 5,000 personal computers, as well as network hubs and servers and several different vendors. Under the new system, software from Siebel Systems Inc., San Mateo, Calif., Manugistics Group Inc., Rockville, Md., and SAP AG, Walldorf, Germany, is used by Hershey's 1,200-person sales force and other departments for handling every step in the process, from original placement of an order to final delivery. It also runs the company's fundamental accounting and touches nearly every operation; tracking raw ingredients; scheduling production; measuring the effectiveness of promotional campaigns; setting prices; and even deciding how products ought to be stacked inside trucks. International Business Machines Corp. was hired to pull it all together. Despite the complexity of the system, Hershey decided to go on line with a huge piece of it all at once -- a so-called big bang that computer experts say is rare and dangerous. Initially, the confectioner planned to start up in April, a slow period. But development and testing weren't complete, and the date was pushed to July, when Halloween orders begin to come in. Retailers say, and Hershey confirms, that the problem is in getting customer orders into the system and transmitting the details of those orders to warehouses for fulfillment. But no one is taking responsibility. Kevin McKay, chief executive officer and president of SAP's U.S. unit, says the system itself isn't at fault. "If it was a system issue, I'd point directly to a system issue," he says. Mr. McKay says he is in touch with Hershey executives almost daily, and he points out that the companies successfully installed an SAP system in Hershey's Canadian operation last year, though that operation is a tiny fraction of the size of the U.S. operation. IBM spokesman Brian Doyle says the company continues to help Hershey address "its business challenges," adding that "the business process transformation under way at Hershey is an enormously complex undertaking." Siebel executives say that Hershey officials told them the problem wasn't with their software. "It may have turned out with the big bang kind of installation, they were maxed out there," says Paul Wahl, Siebel's president. -----Original Message----- From: firstname.lastname@example.org [mailto:email@example.com]On Behalf Of Don Sent: Saturday, October 30, 1999 2:33 PM To: Bill Paris Cc: MIDRANGE-L@midrange.com Subject: Re: Who's going to call Hesheys? Bill, et al, I want to know who's SOFTWARE they installed! Don in DC +--- | This is the Midrange System Mailing List! | To submit a new message, send your mail to MIDRANGE-L@midrange.com. | To subscribe to this list send email to MIDRANGE-L-SUB@midrange.com. | To unsubscribe from this list send email to MIDRANGE-L-UNSUB@midrange.com. | Questions should be directed to the list owner/operator: firstname.lastname@example.org +---
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