Software services provider Rimini Street has provided Japan-based Solar Frontier with SAP ERP applications.
Solar Frontier moved to Rimini Street third-party support to reduce annual SAP vendor maintenance costs, achieve business efficiencies and help drive investments in other critical areas of the business, including data analysis and supply chain management.
Limited Value from Vendor Annual Support Drives Switch
Solar Frontier began using SAP ECC 6.0 in 2010 when parent company Showa Shell Sekiyu completed its SAP implementation. With only a few customizations and minimum add-ons, Solar Frontier’s SAP application was stable and mature, and the frequency of support usage was low. Yet, vendor response to issues was slow, sometimes taking several weeks.
Solar Frontier determined that the level of service and response from SAP was not commensurate with the annual maintenance costs paid. In addition, the company sought to achieve greater organizational efficiencies and cost savings by integrating and streamlining its separately managed IT infrastructure and reducing the cost to manage its applications. In looking at options to optimize the cost of maintaining the various application software and IT services, Solar Frontier turned to Rimini Street.
Rimini Street Premium Support Gains Attention
Soon after initial discussions with Rimini Street, Solar Frontier began to develop significant interest in the Company’s premium support capabilities.
Solar Frontier it planning & promotion department manager Yasuharu Takeuchi said: “At first, we only looked at the cost merits of Rimini Street, but we soon came to understand that their support quality is much better compared to SAP, based on discussions with various clients and industry analysts.
“My interest in Rimini Street increased and I became convinced that there was no reason not to engage in their services. In fact, I was impressed by the fact that there was a company providing such services.”
As with all Rimini Street clients, Solar Frontier has a senior-level Primary Support Engineer (PSE) with an average of 15 years’ experience assigned to them. Rimini Street PSEs provide 24/7/365 support for all issues, including support for customizations, with a guaranteed response time of 15 minutes or less for Priority 1 critical cases.
Savings Lead to New Investments to Prepare for the Future
Using the savings generated by switching to Rimini Street, Solar Frontier will drive strategic initiatives and intends to expand a wide range of systems that will help the company prepare for the future.
Solar Frontier it planning & promotion department Mitsuyoshi Sano said: “The judgment criteria to achieve our goals in IT investment is whether the costs ultimately contribute to the company’s performance. Regularly reviewing our spend to determine if the investments are meaningful is important.
“We rebuilt our data analysis and sales management systems last year, which are mainly being used by the sales department today. We are also improving the functionality of our peripheral systems for management and other department users, with the goal to help improve business performance overall.”
In addition, Solar Frontier will optimize IT investments to strengthen supply chain-related systems, such as the management of inventory and logistics.
Nihon Rimini Street Japan general manager Yorio Wakisaka said: “Nearly all Japanese companies are now promoting digital transformation as part of their organization’s growth strategy, with cost optimization remaining a major business opportunity.
“Solar Frontier has succeeded in improving many areas of its business, including operational efficiencies and strategic investments. By looking to its next level of cost reforms to include integration of IT infrastructure along with support services from Rimini Street, they are now able to deploy personnel to strategic projects and have gained flexibility and cost advantages to enable the future road map of their core systems. This benefit can be enjoyed by many other companies as well.”
Source: Company Press Release