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[ Insights from the SAP-Centric EAM 2013 Event - Huntington Beach March 2013 ( Part 8 of 12): This is part of a blog series brought to you by Norm Poynter and Paul Kurchina, designed to inspire and educate by sharing experiences with the SAP Enterprise Asset Management (EAM) Community. For the past nine years, the Eventful Group's SAP-Centric North American Event ( Supported by SAP and ASUG ) has brought together the EAM community to network, share ideas and experiences, and explore solutions for Enterprise Asset Management.]

While there is nothing new or surprising about companies taking a stab at simplifying SAP screens to make things easier for workers, what is surprising is that many companies are lax in doing this!

Wesley Dean, Senior Asset Care Engineer at MillerCoors, made a presentation at the SAP-centric EAM conference in March that chronicles the in-house customization of the SAP interface for its maintenance workers. MillerCoors currently runs five plants with about 1,800 workers who use SAP, managing some 35,000 pieces of equipment. With six more breweries slated to go online with SAP in the near future, the company decided to make the move toward a more user-friendly interface for its workers.

"What if SAP were as easy for technicians to use as an ATM machine ?  Creating a simple, one-stop shop transaction inside SAP can help them execute transactions and receive assigned work with ease," said Dean.

Dean and his team created a company specific transaction (ZIW37) to come up with a new Asset Care Desktop. Scheduled work is pushed to users when they log on, and a row of icons simplifies how they can pull up a specific transaction. In addition, SAP user training has been simplified, reducing training hours. So far the customization is a win for MillerCoors, as workers love the one-stop shop functionality.

What MillerCoors did here is provide a mechanism to simplify the capture of business decisions. At the end of the day, we have to tailor the system to capture decisions easily and concisely, allowing workers to record them for analysis purposes. That’s the intent of using SAP. If companies haven’t completed simplification projects or chosen to make the use of SAP more concise, it has serious analytical downstream effects. That’s why Dean’s presentation has so much merit. MillerCoors’ solution is inexpensive, doesn’t trample over SAP, offers a lot of latitude, and is upgradable.

I bet if we were to benchmark the new system against the prior system, we would find the quality of business decisions and information likely improved because users can navigate more freely and perform their tasks more expediently, with higher levels of confidence that they’ve done the right thing.

Isn’t that the best way forward ?

To learn more, read Wesley Dean's presentation

For more information, here's a post with all of the links to the published blogs in this series.

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