Proof-of-Concept at Alliander with SAP IBP: Most critical processes first

Proof-of-Concept at Alliander with SAP IBP: Most critical processes first

Curious how McCoy partnered with Alliander to bring their tactical planning to a more mature level? Alliander is an energy network company that specializes in the distribution and infrastructure of electricity and gas. It plays a crucial role in the development and maintenance of energy grids, contributing to the efficiency and sustainability of the energy sector in the Netherlands. 

McCoy as a partner

McCoy was selected as implementation partner thanks to their hands-on Proof-of-Concept approach and emphasis on change management. McCoy brings knowledge of SAP best practices, along with their tooling and accelerators. For example, McCoy's Simply Change approach and toolkit ensures that Alliander's end-users are involved in the adoption of SAP IBP right from the start. Additionally, the success of the project depends heavily on a collaborative project team with a shared vision, consisting of colleagues from both Alliander and McCoys’ experts in Supply Chain Planning. We believe that such a team will play a critical role in achieving desired results.

Strategic goals

In the past years, Alliander has faced significant challenges due material and technical personnel shortages that impacted its execution. Therefore, Alliander launched a supply planning program and acquired SAP Integrated Business Planning (IBP) to improve its tactical planning capabilities, increase material and personnel availability. The goal is to gain greater insight into supply and demand and assess its effectiveness in integrated planning across their resources, including personnel, material, and services.

What Alliander got out of it   

The SAP Integrated Business Planning (IBP) project was split into two phases: a pilot (Proof of Concept (POC)) phase and an implementation phase. This Simply Proof concept tests and verifies functionalities within a specific scope while avoiding incorrect design decisions that may not work for your organization. 

This first approach consisted of several 'Envision' workshops followed by an agile approach with short iterations. Topics included for example modeling demand and verifying resource accessibility based on supply. Key was to create a 1st prototype for the future integrated solution for Allianders’ material, personnel and service resources planning with a compact team. The advantages of this approach at Alliander were:

  • The critical decisions on processes and functionalities are supported and shown with a prototype where these processes could be validated with the business; for example, to create a comprehensive resource supply plan that aligns with all resources, where changes or shortages to resources have a cascading effect on projects. 

  • It was possible to work directly with real data and the real system. This resulted on the one hand in a fast build-up and understanding by Alliander Business and IT of the SAP IBP solution and Best Practices, and on the other hand an accelerated build-up of Alliander specific business knowledge and understanding of the case by McCoy IBP Consultants;

  • Risks and surprises during the implementation were minimized by early creation of familiarity with the system among the business and real data and business cases among the IBP team (IT/McCoy). 

  • The preparation of the required change could be done, including working out the intended (planning) processes, roles and responsibilities and delivering a Change Management plan.

What this brought them

SAP IBP has adequately exhibited its capability as a comprehensive planning model for the (critical) resources. Furthermore, we recognized how IBP impacts various processes and departments, including Sourcing, Planning, and Realization. IBP has proven potential to enable better interdepartmental collaboration and enhance planning processes. Hand-in hand with change management, we were prepared for the subsequent phase, the implementation. 

More questions about your planning processes, SAP IBP or this implementation approach? Feel free to reach out to Jacques via