Enterprise resource planning systems selection in the wine industry of the Western Cape : a qualitative case study

Wiid, Hermanus Jacobus (2011-12)

Thesis (MA (Information Science))--Stellenbosch University, 2011.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The globalised business environment of the 21st century is a complex space for organisations to navigate. As a means of dealing with the challenges and demands brought about by increased interconnectedness and interdependence, organisations are increasingly turning to information and communication technology (ICT), and especially advanced forms of ICT such as enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems. An ERP system encompasses the promise of a seamless integration of business processes to be managed by a single business software application, which can be used to increase competitiveness and assist managers in strategically positioning their organisations for the future. This is especially true in the case of small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) which constitute a large and important part of the economies of numerous countries. As the ERP systems market for larger organisations became saturated at the beginning of the previous decade, ERP system vendors started to target SMEs by developing smaller and less expensive software solutions specifically aimed at this market segment. However, research has shown that these enterprises differ from their larger counterparts in size-specific and industry-specific ways which can greatly affect their acquisition of ERP systems: SMEs often face severe resource constraints and cannot afford the costs associated with failed ERP system implementation efforts. As a result, it becomes all the more important to follow a proper ERP system selection procedure before committing scarce and irrevocable resources to implementation. The purpose of this thesis is to define and describe the size-specific and industryspecific factors that play an important role during ERP system selection (Chapter 1). ERP system selection factors in the literature are summarised and synthesised into a comprehensive framework used to guide the execution of the study (Chapter 2). To this end, a qualitative case study was conducted on an SME in the wine industry of the Western Cape that was in the process of selecting an ERP system. Data were collected by critically analysing and reviewing documents, conducting direct observations of requirements analysis meetings and interviewing participants purposefully selected for the study (Chapter 3). Five major themes emerged from the analysis of the collected data and from this a total of 14 selection factors are identified (Chapter 4). These results largely corroborate existing selection factors from the literature and allows ideas proposed by various authors to be expanded on. In this way, a theoretical foundation is laid for the development of an ERP system selection model for SMEs in the Western Cape wine industry in future research (Chapter 5). The contribution of this research lies in the emphasis it places on the different benefits and shortcomings present in each quadrant of the proposed model and the explanation it provides for how this influences a selection factor trade-off that is unique to each organisation and the industry it operates in. This insight can be used to direct the ERP system selection process.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Die geglobaliseerde besigheidsomgewing van die 21ste eeu is ’n komplekse ruimte waarbinne organisasies moet navigeer. Daarom wend organisasies hulle toenemend tot informasieen kommunikasietegnologie (IKT), en veral ondernemingshulpbronbeplannings (OHB)- sisteme, in ’n poging om hierdie arena se uitdagings en vereistes wat deur toenemende interverbinding en -afhanklikheid meegebring word die hoof te bied. ’n OHB-sisteem dra die belofte van ’n uniforme integrasie van besigheidsprosesse wat deur ’n enkele besigheidsagtewareprogrammatuur bestuur kan word. Dit kan aangewend word om mededingendheid te bevorder en om bestuurders by te staan om hul organisasies strategies te posisioneer vir die toekoms. Dit is veral van toepassing in die geval van klein- tot medium-grootte ondernemings (KMOs) wat ’n groot en belangrike deel van die ekonomieë van verskeie lande verteenwoordig. Teen die begin van die vorige dekade het OHB-sisteemverkopers hul fokus van groot ondernemings na KMOs verskuif deur kleiner en goedkoper sagteware te ontwikkel wat spesifiek op hierdie marksegment gemik was. Navorsing het egter bewys dat hierdie ondernemings van hul groter eweknieë verskil in terme van grootte en industrie en dat dit ’n beduidende impak kan hê op die verwerwing van OHB-sisteme: KMOs ervaar dikwels ernstige hulpbrontekorte en kan nie die koste verbonde aan mislukte OHBsisteemimplementering bekostig nie. Gevolglik raak dit toenemend belangrik dat hierdie ondernemings ’n behoorlike OHB-sisteemseleksieprosedure volg, voordat skaars en onvervangbare hulpbronne aan die implementering van dié sagteware bestee word. Die doel van hierdie tesis is om die grootte- en industrie-spesifieke faktore wat ’n belangrike rol gedurende OHB-sisteemseleksie speel te definieer en te beskryf (Hoofstuk 1). OHB-sisteemseleksiefaktore in die literatuur is opgesom en saamgevat in ’n omvattende raamwerk wat die uitvoering van die studie gerig het (Hoofstuk 2). ’n Kwalitatiewe gevallestudie is gevolglik uitgevoer op ’n KMO in die Wes-Kaapse wynindustrie wat besig was om ’n OHB-sisteem te selekteer. Data is ingesamel deur dokumente krities te analiseer en te hersien, deur direkte observasies van behoefte-analise-vergaderings te maak en onderhoude te voer met deelnemers aan die studie, wat spesifiek vir hierdie doel geselekteer is (Hoofstuk 3). Vyf prominente temas en ’n totaal van 14 seleksiefaktore is vanuit die analise van die data bepaal (Hoofstuk 4). Hierdie resultate bevestig grotendeels bestaande seleksiefaktore in die literatuur en fasiliteer die verdere uitbou van bestaande idees van verskeie outeurs. Op hierdie manier word ’n teoretiese grondslag vir die ontwikkeling van ’n model vir OHB-sisteemseleksie in toekomstige navorsing gelê (Hoofstuk 5). Die bydrae van hierdie navorsing lê in die klem wat dit plaas op die verskillende voor- en nadele teenwoordig in elke kwadrant van die voorgestelde model en in die verduideliking van die impak daarvan op ’n uitruiling van seleksiefaktore wat uniek is aan elke organisasie en die industrie waarin dit werksaam is. Hierdie insig kan uiteindelik gebruik word om die OHB-sisteemseleksieprosedure te rig.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/17895
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