Sugar Producer:

Automating SAP functions with UiPath for the Manufacturing Industry

Client:

Sugar Producing Company

Location:

Germany, UK, Spain & Poland

Industry:

Manufacturing

Team:

1 Senior RPA Developer,
1 Junior RPA developer

Technology:

UiPath

Timeframe:

3 years (ongoing)

Automating SAP functions with UiPath for the Manufacturing industry

16

RPA bots built so far

~5000

hours of manual work saved/yearly

x15

average process acceleration

Client

Because of our agreement and NDA with the client, we can’t disclose the client's name or other details.

The client is one of the largest sugar producers in the world, with an annual production of around 4.8 million tonnes. The company has sugar factories located in many European countries.

The Challenge

The client is a big, multinational sugar production corporation.

There is a massive amount of time-consuming workflows within the organization. Each day, they process enormous amounts of documents and data. To manage their processes, they use industry-standard SAP software.

We were first approached by the partner’s team when they were just starting their SAP automation journey. At this point, they already had a couple of process automations delivered by another RPA vendor. Still, they were not fully satisfied with the outcome and sought an alternative partner.

Selected Solutions:

We started our collaboration by automating critical processes in the controlling and finance departments, as their processes are the most time-consuming, mundane, and error-prone.

Later, we moved to client service, sales, and logistics.
Initially, we started delivering attended bots (ones that the process owners are launching). That way, the company’s employees can learn about automation better and get used to working with the bots. It was crucial for building awareness and trust in automation.

Here are the most notable SAP automation bots we have built so far:

1. Automated self-invoicing in SAP for vendors

Since the client has multiple buyers and is required to provide hundreds of invoices, to take these repetitive and dull processes off its employees' shoulders, we have built a bot that allows clients to generate SAP invoices by themselves while making a purchase and then send it to a dedicated e-mail account.

 

No of cases: 700/year
Time saved: 175 hours/year (12 minutes per case)

 

2. Automated system for EUR-pallet management and cost settlement

Significant customer administrative time has been devoted to managing their EUR-pallet stock, with some being charged to the client, some being returned, and occasional damages occurring when removing pallets from the chain.

To streamline that, we have built an SAP bot that supports managing and booking pallets in the logistic chain. The bot scans the order documentation from clients, extracts data about the EUR pallet, and updates the SAP accordingly.

In the first iteration, we created an attended bot that would be launched manually by the client’s employee. In the 2nd iteration, we are moving to the unattended bot, which will take care of the process 100% autonomously.

 

Process acceleration: x10
Process volume: 200 orders/monthly
Hours saved: 40/month

 

3. Sales-supporting bot to track Clients' status

Company sales reps use SAP extensively to manage their clients' orders and new sales. They have to keep track of any discrepancies and missed payments and react quickly if they occur.

To support the sales team, we have built a bot that launches a few times daily and scans the SAP list of current clients, looking for blocked orders (in most cases, due to missed payment). After finding all the relevant items in the SAP, an e-notifier is deployed, sending the info about the accounts to the relevant sales reps.

 

Time saved: 3640 hours/yearly (1.75 FTE)
Volume: 210 documents/weekly
Speeding up the process: x15

 

4. Web scrapper for stock index data

This one was outside the SAP. We have created a scrapping bot that monitors the prices of the resources on various stock index websites in a real-time.

Usually, this kind of work is done via API, which is quite costly. Bot delivered the same results

The stock index data is later used to create pricing reports.

 

Time saved: 20h / monthly
Volume: 100 transactions/month
Speeding up the process: x10

 

5. Quality Assurance bot

To ensure the highest quality of sugar, European subsidiaries are constantly monitoring production batches by sending multiple product and ingredient samples to various laboratories.

We have automated pulling out data from different laboratory reports to streamline reporting.

All the results are being sent to one e-mail address operated by the bot. The robot scans the reports, pulls the relevant data, checks if they are correct, and migrates it onto SAP.

There is no need for manual work - everything happens automatically and is super-scalable, as adding the new laboratory to the system takes almost zero time.

 

Time saved: 15 min vs. 5 seconds per report
Volume: +50 reports monthly
Speeding up the process: x60

 

The Outcome

This has been one of the longest Flobotics and most successful collaborations to date.

We started with the already-filled backlog of processes for automation. Over the course of the months, the backlog dried out, leaving the client’s team even more hungry for automation.

We have conducted the process discovery workshop, identifying new bottlenecks in customer SAP workflows and finding new processes to automate.

We have also been working on optimizing the client's Center of Excellence by switching from attended to unattended robots so process owners can fully utilize Robotic Process Automation for SAP.

 

16

RPA bots built so far

~5000

hours of manual work saved/yearly

x15

average process acceleration

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