The E-commerce Integration project was initiate to offer ABB Enterprise Software (AES) products for purchase on ABB's, the parent company, online marketplace. The objective of the project was to increase the sales channels for AES's software products to increase revenue and broaden the customer base. The project would require redefining the sales process. Due to the sales process involving so many departments, the project team I led included SMEs from the Finance, Sales, Product Development, Product Delivery, Salesforce, SAP and Legal departments. The project process entailed documenting the current sales process, analyzing the e-commerce platform and how it would interface with the AES SAP & Salesforce systems, developing & documenting a new sales process, working with Product Development to format the products for the online marketplace and finalizing the product delivery details with Product Delivery & Legal teams.
The project experienced several delays and setbacks due to the aggressive schedule that was established at the start. The main setback the project suffered was the design of the SAP system. AES is a software company which mainly sells licensing and maintenance packages, ABB products are mainly hardware which resulted in a different how the AES and ABB SAP systems were design. The is design different caused an incompatibility which wouldn't allow the e-commerce system to accept AES orders. The ABB SAP team would've been responsible for making the AES SAP enhancements to fix the incompatibility at a cost of $15k which the project sponsor didn't approve. The sponsor didn't cancel the project and the team kept working to find the best possible solution because the ultimate goal of the project was not a fully functioning online ordering process, but rather strategic product positioning. Due to the system incompatibility and budget constraints, the final order process only allowed customers to only submit an RFQ for the AES products, which didn't fulfill the initial objective, but satisfied the ultimate goal of the sponsor.
- The project sponsor was an executive and the schedule was very aggressive as a result. The necessary due diligence that the PMO typically does to initiate a project was not fully executed and all of the risks were not identified as a result. Despite organizational pressure, as the project manager I should have set the expectation of what a reasonable schedule would after doing the proper scoping and planning.