At a very practical level what are the problems your organization might be experiencing that would point to the JAR&A Strategic Engineered Precision Taxonomy approach being relevant?
Following are some problems I frequently encounter:
1. Spent millions – no answers
A frequent complaint I hear from executives is "we have spent millions but I cannot get answers to simple questions even though the transactions are being processed".
SEPT configuration is the answer to this problem.
2. No accurate production unit costs
Executives frequently complain they cannot get accurate production unit costs – one CEO whose company was developing a new mine said to me "James, I have spent 27 million on … (big brand ERP), I have ONE tunnel, they cannot tell me how much it is costing per meter to drive that tunnel, in one years' time I will have eighty tunnels, what am I to do?"
I subsequently learned that that same organization employed a highly competent lady with a Bachelor of Commerce degree and five years of post-graduate experience who had not managed to produce a viable income statement in six months and that the senior bookkeeper had spent six months whittling down the Chart of Accounts to 16 pages of accounts from 25 pages based on what she considered relevant. It finally turned out that the Chief Financial Officer was managing the finances in Excel and merely pretending to use the ERP!
They had the second worst Chart of Accounts I have ever seen – a Chart of Accounts which did not comply with any of the principles advocated here. Yet a Chart of Accounts with regard to which the big brand ERP software vendor declared "… is so powerful it can handle that" – totally ignoring the fact that the Chart of Accounts made no logical sense whatsoever, a characteristic of many Charts of Accounts which results in implementers making a fortune with ongoing support while executives mistakenly believe they do not understand IT when they should instead be taking a stand for quality taxonomies.
A badly designed Chart of Accounts recently contributed to a Chief Executive of a large listed company being fired after a badly configured big brand ERP was reporting increased profits while, in fact, the profit was a loss because some expensive consultant had accidentally reversed the posting accounts for the debit and credit side of certain transactions in the configuration.
A series of SEPT taxonomies would have solved both of these problems.
3. No accurate end- to-end product costs
Another CEO of a manufacturing group in which several business units added value to basic materials to create high value products complained that he could not get sight of the end to end chain of value addition and cost addition for his finished products. Once again badly classified and badly configured data was the cause.
A SEPT Item Master taxonomy coupled to precision configuration would have solved his problem.
4. Nobody trusts the system
I constantly encounter businesses where most of the business is run in Excel and add-on software packages because people do not trust the data in the system.
SEPT configuration properly implemented and operated is the answer to this.
5. Reports do not agree / do not make sense
It is an everyday occurrence in most corporations that they have numerous simple reports that do not agree or do not make sense, each person has their own variant which they trust but the overall totals do not agree. Frequently this relates to badly designed and badly configured validation lists and Master Data.
SEPT configuration is the answer to this.
6. Still getting huge bills from implementers
It is a regular occurrence that organizations continue to pay huge monthly fees for support of their systems or to employ expensive personnel to maintain reports and general configuration because the configuration is so clumsy and imprecise that the consultant or staff member is frequently the only person who can make some sort of sense of the data.
7. Our data does not make sense
Executives frequently tell me that they do not understand IT – on closer examination this translates to the data being so badly configured that it makes no sense at all and does not in any meaningful way model the real world -- so executives, when they cannot make sense of the data, assume there is something magical that IT people know that they do not in order to make things work, frequently ignoring the harsh reality that it is the same people who are responsible for the mess in the first place.
Ultimately the CEO MUST be the custodian of any integrated system such as an ERP, Data Warehouse or Business Intelligence installation and the configuration MUST make sense to the CEO. This requires a SEPT configuration designed and implemented from the executive suite.
8. Lack of an effective group consolidation model
Most corporations lack anything approaching a comprehensive Group Financial Consolidation model that is anything more than a set of summarized financial statements. The JAR&A SEPT Financial Taxonomy solution (Cubic Business Model and Group Wide Master Chart of Accounts) provides a solution that enables comprehensive Group Wide financial analysis and modelling.
It also provides a mechanism for rapidly mapping and analysing the financial performance of potential acquisitions during due diligence and of rapidly integrating acquisitions when they come on board.
There are numerous other problems that you may be experiencing that are giving rise to frustration, doubting the software you have bought, etc. In the vast majority of these cases a comprehensive SEPT configuration coupled with Strategic Customization well designed and well implemented to JAR&A standards and well operated is the answer.
Strategic Engineered Precision Taxonomies really can make a huge difference to your Integrated Business Information System (IBIS), ERP, DW or BI investment and enable you to massively leverage your existing investments.
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Business Systems NOT delivering?
Call the Business Systems Specialist
Dr James A Robertson -- has been involved in the effective application of Business Information Systems, including but NOT limited to ERP, since 1987 and in the profitable and effective use of computers in Business since 1981.
Drawing on a diversity of experience, including formal military training in Quick Attack techniques at the Regimental Commander level, Dr Robertson has developed highly effective methods of investigating any sub-optimal Business Information Systems situation -- be it an established system or a stalled project or any other source of Executive frustration -- quickly and concisely diagnosing the root cause of the problem and prescribing concise practical actions that Business Executives can effectively act on see the Pulse Measurement page and also the Sample Reports page for redacted real reports.
He has also developed highly effective methods of strategically enriching systems to unlock the full potential of existing investments, see the Precision Configuration page and couples this to architecting small pieces of clever software that harness the full potential of your investment, see the Software page.
If you are having problems with your systems, your project or your IT Department, call The Business Systems Specialist
Business System Failure is RIFE -- we offer insight into why this happens AND WHAT is required to prevent it.
Failure is at epidemic levels with massive damage done to client companies -- if you are NOT aware of the extent of the problem please visit the About Failure page for a catalog of major failures running to billions of Pounds and Dollars.
All evidence indicates that the established players do NOT know how to deliver stable, reliable high value solutions that WORK.
There HAS to be a better way!
This website provides information relating to that way with a large collection of white papers, presentations, standards documents, etc that you can use to start bringing the situation under control
We also offer high level advisory services with regard to the application of the principles advocated on this website
We offer an ENGINEERING APPROACH to addressing these issues
By Engineering I mean the formal, structured, highly disciplined, highly systematic, highly practical approach that consistently delivers results in ALL areas of human endeavor where formally trained and certified engineers are the ONLY practitioners permitted to operate -- think large buildings, factories, motor vehicles, aircraft -- highly complex systems that work at a level that we take it for granted that they WILL work and where failure is all but unthinkable and, when it happens, attracts immediate public attention and rigorous investigation directed at ensuring that such failures are prevented in the future -- in fact, everything that the management consulting industry that implements complex software systems is NOT
This approach is discussed further on the Engineering Approach page.
In 2003 I undertook an in-depth analysis of all the information and experience that I had gathered with regard to the factors giving rise to Business Information System failure including ERP and general IT and classified this information into a number of categories including "The Factors Causing Failure" and "The Critical Factors for Success" based on this I developed a two day Course "The Critical Factors for Information Technology Investment Success" which is still offered today.
Based on this I wrote the book of the same name, which is available in electronic form here for download:
James has a very detailed profile on LinkedIn should you require further information about him.
You can also connect with him on LinkedIn at http://www.linkedin.com/in/DrJamesARobertsonERPDoctor
James has an open networking profile -- click on "Connect" and use email address James@LinkedIn-at-JARA.com.
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There is a large body of white papers, articles and other content produced by Dr James Robertson available on this website
Please click here to visit the detailed listing of articles
About Dr James A Robertson PrEng -- The Business Systems Doctor -- and Other Topics
Catalogue of Major Business Information System Failures
About the Engineering Approach
James Robertson's Value Add
Attributes of a HIGH VALUE solution
Recognizing Business System Failure
The Critical Human Foundation
Old Software IS Viable
From South Africa
Competencies of Dr James A Robertson PrEng
About Professor Malcolm McDonald
Table of Contents
About my relationship with the Almighty Creator, Yah the Eternally Self-Existing
Comments relating to the Business Systems Industry and other topics
Testimonials and other positive material regarding James Robertson
List of Articles
Achieving High Value Business Information System outcomes
Executive Custody -- What is it and HOW do you get it?
The REAL Issues in Integrated Business Information System Success
Part 1: Introduction
Part 2 -- Mythology and Lack of Executive Custody
Part 3 – Strategic Alignment and Precision Configuration
Why your ERP is NOT delivering and HOW to FIX it
IT Project Management
CEO Anthony Lee Comments on his experience of the Pulse Measurement
No Charge Guarantee on the Pulse Measurement Service
Examples of Pulse Measurement Outcomes
Critical questions regarding the Pulse Measurement™
The Pulse Measurement Workflow
The Critical Factors for Business System (ERP+) Investment Success in the Pulse Measurement
Indicative Pulse Measurement Durations
What is a JAR&A Pulse Measurement?
Survival of the fittest – why it makes sense to measure the pulse of your business
Examples of Pulse Measurement Outcomes over 24 years
Sample Pulse Measurement Reports
Strategic Essence: The Missing Link in Business Information Systems
Strategic Essence: Overview
Strategic Essence: Part 1 -- Strategy Defined
Strategic Essence: Part 2 -- Differentiation
Strategic Essence: Part 3 -- The Essence IS Different
Strategic Essence: Part 4 -- The Essence should be the Point of Departure
Strategic Essence: Part 5 -- Discovering Strategic Essence
Strategy -- the Essence of the Business: What is it and how do you develop actionable strategic plans?
Simple Steps to Increase the Strategic Value of your ERP Investment
Free Strategic Snapshot Toolset and Manual
A strategy focused planning system beyond traditional budgeting
Tough IT and ERP Procurement and Contracting that Works
Robust Business Systems Procurement
Part 1 -- Introduction
Part 2 -- Bill of Services, Laboratory, Go-live Certificate, etc
Part 3 -- Executive Engagement, Bid Compliance, Adjudication and other matters
Guidance and Advisory Services
The Art of Project Leadership
Why Regular Communication with the CEO is Vital
The Business Simulation Laboratory
Precision Configuration and Strategic Business Information Architecture
Precision Configuration based on Strategic Engineered Precision Taxonomies
The JAR&A Cubic Business Model
Highly Structured Strategic Chart of Accounts -- a Vital Element of your Corporate Information Arsenal
The Product Catalogue -- an Essential Element of any Precision Configuration
Attributes -- answers to the questions you have NOT yet thought to ask
Case Studies of Notably Successful Projects with high value Precision Configuration
092 Doing things differently and better -- ASCO Case Study 2-- BPM Summit 2013
088 Strategic ERP Invesment -- ASCO Case Study -- Service Management Conference and Exhibition Africa
026 Information Architecture and Design of FIS for Rennies Group -- Financial Information Systems Conf
018 CRM Risk Control: Designing and Implementing an Integrated Risk Mgmt Sys -- Integrated Risk Mgmt Conf
011 V3 Consulting Eng: Benefits of MIS to Professional Practice -- SAICE 15th Ann Conf on Computers in Civil Eng
Strategically Enriching your Business Information Systems
Part 2 -- Principles of Data Engineering
Part 3 -- Steps in applying these recommendations
Simple Steps to increase the strategic information value yield from your Business Systems Investment
The Full JAR&A Taxonomy Manual
Part 1: Introduction, Problem Statement, Definitions and Examples
Part 2: Why Use JAR&A, Required Knowledge and Experience, Cubic Business Model and Chart of Accounts and Taxonomy Software
Part 3: How to do it, Case Studies and White Papers and other References
Example General Ledger Manual
Business Process -- Irrelevant, Distracting and Dangerous
The RIGHT Approach
Custom Strategic Software Design and Oversight of Construction
Standards for Custom Software Specification
What IS Software?
Critical Factors for I.T. Success
A Moral and Ethical Dilemma -- Systems that Fail
Case Studies examining Business Information System failures
The BBC Digital Media Initiative Debacle
The Bridgestone -- IBM Conflict
Speaking and Training
Showcase of Conference Presentations
Most Viewed Presentations
Briefings and Seminars
Why your ERP/BIS is NOT delivering and HOW to FIX it
ERP and IT Procurement that Delivers Results
The Critical Factors for IT and ERP Investment Success
Conferences and Public Presentations
Conferences 80 to 99 -- 2009 to Present
Conferences 60 to 79 -- 2005 to 2009
Conferences 40 to 59 -- 1996 to 2005
Conferences 20 to 39 -- 1994 to 1996
Conferences 01 to 19 -- 1989 to 1994
On-Line Seminars (Webinars)
Webinar on Preparing and Presenting Webinars
Contacting James A Robertson and Associates Limited