Integrating ERP using EAI: a model for post-hoc evaluation
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In recent years there has been an increased focus on improving the capability and flexibility of organisational information systems through improving, and where necessary, re-engineering inter- and intra-organisational information flows. In doing so, many firms have realised that the cornerstone of their information systems capability is dependent upon core systems such as Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP). In realising this, it has forced businesses to acknowledge the need to integrate ERP systems with existing disparate legacy systems. Technology solutions such as Enterprise Application Integration (EAI) have been seen as a panacea to facilitate integration through the use of technologies that allow corporate IS subsystems to communicate with one another. In the context of using enterprise technologies to integrate ERP with other organisational business systems, this paper analyses and extends previously published work through presenting the failure of an industrial automation business to integrate its ERP system with legacy processes when using an EAI approach. In doing so, the authors present a post hoc evaluation model that can be used by others as a frame of reference; a tool for reflection. The presented model seeks to provide further insight to the failed approach to ERP integration, within the given case study organisation. This proposed model, is constructed in terms of Technical, Organisational and Tailorability components. It is anticipated that this will be a useful tool for both practitioners and academics, who wish to gain a deeper understanding of ERP/EAI implementation approaches, as well as providing insights into how the componentisation and extension of ERP functionalities can be achieved, towards so-called ERPII.
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