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Date Submitted: 02/01/2013 02:17 PM

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Case Study

Cisco Systems, Inc: Implementing ERP,” Robert D. Austin, Richard L. Nolan, Mark Cotteleer, Harvard Business School (HBS) Case May 2002, Product Number: 9-699-022

Essential Reading

“Enterprise Resource Planning - Technology Note”, Robert Austin, Harvard Business Review, Product # 699020.

“Reengineering Work: Don’t Automate, Obliterate”, 1990, Michael Hammer, Harvard Business Review Article, HBS Product Number: 90406

Individual Case Assignment Questions:

1. At the start of the case, Cisco's information systems are failing, yet no one steps forward to lead the effort to replace them. Why is this? Why were no managers eager to take on this project?

Yes, Cisco was growing fast in the market as shown by their sales but the system was failing as system outages became common as well as other negative consequences like a two day shut down because they could not keep up. However, no steps forward had been taken by no managers to make things better for several reasons including the fact it would be very time consuming. For a manager to begin implementing a package, as seen when ERP was implemented, it takes a tremendous a lot of time and effort. Managers must spend time researching the benefits and shortcomings of the different packages and develop a strategic plan that would allow a big project successful.

After all the research and time spent developing the project a budget must be made that will be likely to be approved by board members because not only would it be a time consuming project but it would also be very expensive one.

Also, at the same time managers were unsure if it was necessary because Cisco was so successful until then with a significant annual growth rate with current system that if an implementation of a completely new strategic plan might change the growing success rate of Cisco. As mentioned in the case, people understood the magnitude of the implementation of a huge project and the risk of it getting so big that...