Case Study Migration of MS Project & SAP Integration

MAN Diesel & Turbo: Forward-Looking Project Management

MAN Diesel & Turbo SE, based in Augsburg, Germany, is the world’s leading provider of large-bore diesel engines and turbomachinery for marine and stationary applications. It designs two-stroke and four-stroke engines that are manufactured both by the company and by its licensees. The engines have power outputs ranging from 450 kW to 87 MW.

MAN Diesel & Turbo also designs and manufactures gas turbines of up to 50 MW, steam turbines of up to 150 MW and compressors with volume flows of up to 1.5 million m³/h and pressures of up to 1,000 bar. The product range is rounded off by turbochargers, CP propellers, gas engines and chemical reactors. MAN Diesel & Turbo’s range of goods includes complete marine propulsion systems, turbomachinery units for the oil & gas as well as the process industries and turnkey power plants.

Initial Situation: Growth Demands New Project Management Tools

As a result of its strategic focus on the construction of turnkey power plants, MAN Diesel & Turbo’s Power Plants business unit realized that it had changing requirements with regard to its project management solution. The tools the company had been using up until then – SAP PS and schedules in Microsoft Project – were not able to handle the increasing level of project complexity or to meet the need for a multi-project environment.

The Power Plants business unit noted in particular that these solutions lacked an integrated planning database within the multi-project environment, and had standalone resource and capacity planning functions that were not related to the projects on hand. Managers were sometimes obliged to make subjective decisions in conflict situations between two projects, as they simply lacked the information they needed to make an objective decision.

Solution: Microsoft Project Server as a Centralized PM Tool Underpinning the Entire Development Process

This was why MAN Diesel & Turbo decided to implement Microsoft Project Server and improve the project management situation. The company wanted to use this centralized solution to harmonize project planning and create a planning data pool. In addition, the server's standard functions would enable the company to implement centralized resource and capacity planning. With the information generated by this centralization, staff would be able to produce reports to underpin decision-making for individual projects as well as across several projects in the multi-project environment.

Automatic Data Synchronization between SAP and ERP

The company had already started working with Project Server as well as with the project management service provider TPG The Project Group and its products. MAN Diesel & Turbo had already worked with TPG before and was very happy with the collaboration, so this was one of the reasons it decided to choose TPG again.

Additional reasons included TPG’s extensive experience in providing consulting and implementation for Microsoft Project Server; and the availability of TPG products that extend the functionality of Microsoft Project. One of these is the interface product TPG PSLink, which MAN Diesel & Turbo wanted to implement to enable the synchronization of data between SAP and Microsoft Project Server. The projects would be created in SAP as before, including the necessary code numbers, and would be transferred to Microsoft Project Server in the background.

Following an upgrade to MS Project Server 2010, projects can now be downloaded from SAP onto the Project Server. The next step was to import order-related SAP data into Project Server, add feedback-related tasks and complete the resource information. This enables project team members to enter their hours worked into Microsoft Project Server. The TPG PSLink interface product ensures that this information is automatically synchronized with SAP CATS.

This integration makes it easier for staff to monitor the progress of a project. With a simple comparison of planned and actual times as well as of planned and actual project progress, they can quickly review the status of individual projects. They are also able to see where most of the work is being concentrated and which team members are overbooked. This enables project and department managers to intervene in good time, avoid potential bottlenecks and plan more efficiently for the future. 

“The collaboration with TPG on this project went off without a hitch,” says Manuel Sachs, Project Planning Manager in the Power Plants business unit at MAN Diesel & Turbo. “They gave us fast, straightforward and solution-oriented support when problems arose during the roll-out phase. The implementation of Microsoft Project Server and the TPG PSLink interface product has enabled us to create the right foundation for modern multi-project and resource management,” he adds.

Successful Roll-Out

Following the successful pilot phase, during which TPG also provided support, the system went live. The company currently uses it to concurrently manage some 80 projects with about 50,000 hours worked per month. The company is planning to implement various extensions to the system in order to increase acceptance rates and make further improvements to data quality.

Logo MAN Diesel Turbo

Industry:

- Industrial engineering

Department:

- Power Plant Construction
- R&D

Solution Components:

> Microsoft Project Server
> TPG PSLink (SAP Integration)
> TPG ResourceLink (Integration)

„The collaboration with TPG on this project went off without a hitch. They gave us fast, straightforward and solution-oriented support when problems arose during the roll-out phase.

The implementation of Microsoft Project Server and the TPG PSLink interface product has enabled us to create the right foundation for modern program and resource management.“
Manuel Sachs, Project Planning Manager, BU Power Plants, MAN Diesel & Turbo