Buildings specialist SIGA counts on SAP S/4HANA
At SIGA, which is based in Ruswil, Switzerland, everything revolves around the building envelope. Change is important to the company, also in terms of digitalization. With a brownfield migration to SAP S/4HANA, SIGA is switching to a modern and future-proof ERP system.
The starting situation
“We try to anticipate solutions before the customers start to ask for them,” says Peter Scherrer, CFO of SIGA. “To do this, we monitor the market to find out what the best solution could be, which might not even be available at present,” continues Scherrer.
SIGA has already developed a variety of innovative products in this way – although in some cases, it took the company several attempts. “For instance, it took us several years to develop a window flashing tape that revolutionised the bitumen-based solution used up until that point,” explains Scherrer. The work paid off: SIGA now achieves a significant amount of its sales revenue with this product range. “Our willingness to embrace change is what sets us apart – and that also applies to digitalization,” emphasises Scherrer.
SIGA employs a total of 575 people in 25 countries around the world and, as a quality leader, aims to be the global leader in its niche. Direct, personal customer contact is of central importance here – and digitalization is intended to support and strengthen its impact. “We want to push online contacts with our target group and to offer software that makes the work of our target group easier and helps them to rise to their challenges more easily,” highlights Scherrer.
Digitalisation is key
At the same time, SIGA is also making considerable investments in its in-house software solution. “This includes SAP, but also Dynamics and the Office 365 applications, in which we are now continuously automating the processes that our employees implement,” explains Scherrer. “This will make the processes more secure, reliable and of higher quality,” emphasises Scherrer. SIGA also has transparency in terms of its supply chain. “We are now at a point there where we almost have full real-time transparency concerning our material flows and manufacturing plants,” says Scherrer.
Continuing with innovations
SIGA has its own in-house software developers. “We have developed and designed specific processes in the previous SAP R/3 that we needed for our daily work,” explains Florian Albisser, SAP system manager at SIGA. Knowing that the new SAP innovations will only be available on the SAP S/4HANA system, SIGA took the decision to switch to SAP S/4HANA at an early stage. “An important factor in this respect was to transfer our previous in-house developments to the new ERP system,” explains Peter Scherrer.
The new ERP system is modern and allows us to rise successfully to future challenges.
SIGA began with its preparations for the migration following the brownfield strategy at the start of January 2021. Data cleansing and archiving proved to be a major time factor, as SIGA didn’t want to take any legacy data with it into the new system. There was also a schedule for the different departments as well as test runs. “Every now and then, new things came to light that we hadn’t thought of,” says Florian Albisser.
SAP S/4HANA went live in May 2021. “It was of crucial importance to us for the system changeover to have as little impact as possible on our day-to-day business,” emphasises Peter Scherrer. His conclusion: “We worked to a very tight timetable, and I am pleased that such a large project was completed so successfully.” In contrast to the previous SAP system, SAP S/4HANA is no longer operated in-house but in the cloud by consolut. “This simplifies the exchange of data between the different systems,” explains Florian Albisser.
Charlotta Solberg, project manager at consolut, is also pleased about the successful completion of the migration: “We prepared the project thoroughly with two important preliminary projects and gained time through an early business partner migration. The insights gained from a full changeover SAP S/4HANA in a sandbox helped us to take the preparatory steps in advance. This allowed us to complete the changeover to SAP S/4HANA and to move to the cloud on time and within budget. The start in the new system proved to be particularly smooth for the users.”
SIGA implemented the SAP solution SAP S/4HANA with core processes for its logistics and finance departments. “One plus point is certainly the speed of the new system and the significantly quicker evaluation of the data,” explains Peter Scherrer.
A modern and expandable system
“The new ERP system is modern and allows us to rise successfully to future challenges,” notes Scherrer, referring to SAP Product Footprint Management in the area of sustainability and the Adobe Forms conversion as additional examples. “In this area, we are expecting to see significant advantages from the interactive forms,” says Florian Albisser.
Stability thanks to the cloud
The new cloud environment also offers clear advantages. “It promises a high level of stability and a superior performance, so that the business is able to focus on its main tasks,” emphasises Scherrer. And something that’s very important to SIGA: “The brownfield migration we have chosen allows us to grow into SAP S/4HANA: new functions can be introduced gradually without extensive training of staff that a redesign of all the processes would have required.”
A world in which buildings no longer consume energy: that is the vision of SIGA, a Swiss family business based in Ruswil. SIGA focuses on the air- and wind-proof building envelope layer, and develops high-performance products to make buildings of all types air- and wind-proof. Its products include residential toxin-free insulation materials such as windbreak membranes, vapour retarders and window connection adhesive tapes.