Fashion & Retail
International fashion brand Marc O’Polo – which launches various collections every year – has physical stores, online shops, and nearly 2,000 retail and franchise partners in 60 countries worldwide. The brand’s corporate strategy is focused on internationalization with a consistent commitment to sustainability. To support these efforts, the Germany-based company embarked on a radical transformation project to move to SAP S/4HANA as its central ERP system.
The company grew rapidly over the past ten years, and had to quickly develop and implement IT solutions as demands warranted. Over time, growing pains surfaced with a multitude of complex processes in place across various systems. For example, the company operated several different ERP systems for the wholesale, retail, and finance divisions which required a great deal of communication and data sharing.
To better support its global growth, Marc O’Polo knew it had to completely reorganize its IT infrastructure from scratch. They opted for SAP S/4HANA as their central ERP system and aimed to standardize both their IT and corporate processes as part of the transformation.
This company-focused transformation approach had unique challenges. To keep business operations up and running, the SAP S/4HANA go-live would need to be a phased approach, with each business division at Marc O’Polo having its own date. To be successful, both the old and new systems had to work in tandem. Comprehensive documentation and complete transparency was critical, as was maintaining employee involvement and motivation.
“Without the support of LeanIX, a cost-efficient and smooth transition from our old landscape to the new SAP S/4HANA software landscape would not have been possible.”
IT Enterprise Architect, Marc O’Polo AG
Marc O’Polo quickly realized it needed a holistic view of the entire software landscape to successfully execute its SAP S/4HANA transformation and develop sustainable structures. The team knew it needed an Enterprise Architecture Management approach to achieve this.
The newly founded EA team led by enterprise architect Oliver Dawid understood this: For a successful SAP S/4HANA transformation that ticked all the boxes regarding quality, and which could be finalized within the scheduled two years, a modern EA tool with a data-based approach at its core was necessary.
The team quickly rolled-out LeanIX, onboarded employees, and gathered current information on IT systems and interfaces. Thanks to LeanIX’s import functionality and the flexible best practice data model with predefined Fact Sheets, the whole process only took three months. The EA team was able to lay the groundwork for harmonious and parallel operation of legacy and new systems during the transformation project. Now, Marc O’Polo has real transparency into the state of its software landscape, including lifecycles and relevant dependencies.
The close collaboration with the LeanIX Customer Success Team was key for fast implementation. Marc O’Polo decided to implement an in-house developed middleware as the API layer to harmonize the communication between the systems. Thanks to the best practices provided by LeanIX, a solution for mapping this middleware was found in no time.
Depending on the transformation phase, the interdisciplinary project team of Marc O’Polo consisted of up to 80 employees who used LeanIX as their window into any information related to the software landscape. Within the various workstreams, leaders from IT and other business divisions cooperated with external consultants and defined which processes would be available in LeanIX via the SAP Signavio integration. At the same time, the team made use of up-to-date information on used applications from LeanIX in SAP Signavio Process Manager for process modelling. This close-knit integration of Business and IT was a major element in this complex transformation.
The LeanIX integration with Confluence and Jira also played an important role, especially with employees. Having accessible and transparent information, which could be used by everyone in the company, was particularly important to Marc O’Polo. Stakeholders can now continue to use the tools they’re familiar with, and since they are integrated with LeanIX, they can share project reports in Confluence or check the status of Jira tickets directly in the LeanIX interface.
The intuitive user interface and competitive pricing model, which is independent of the number of users, were deciding factors in selecting LeanIX as the EAM solution. Marc O’Polo recognized that only those who were well-informed would support change, and thanks to LeanIX, everyone in the organization was able to take part in the transformation journey.
“LeanIX is our Single Source of Truth for IT systems, which every employee in our company will be able to access without any restrictions.”
Oliver Dawid, IT Enterprise Architect, Marc O’Polo AG
Marc O’Polo followed this mantra: “Meeting and exceeding our clients’ expectations is our mission - whenever and whatever they expect from us.”
With customers demanding sustainability across the business, Marc O’Polo’s IT structures also needed to meet these requirements. SAP S/4HANA offered an array of possibilities to achieve greener IT infrastructures, but the company first need to get a transparent view of the entire IT landscape and interdependencies.
With the help of LeanIX, Marc O’Polo established this transparency in a short time and laid the foundation for a successful transformation – powering sustainable IT and business practices for now and the future.
[Translation from German into English]
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