Harvesting IT

DQI Bureau
New Update

Punjab Chemicals and Crop Protection (PCCPL) is a joint venture between Excel

Industries and Punjab State Industrial Development Corporation. Since its

inception in 1975, the company has utilized state-of-the-art instruments

efficiently. However, when it came to the effective use of IT and its

implementation, technical glitches cropped up. Entered Ajay Wadhwa, CIO, PCCPL

who underlined the significance of including standardized and streamlined

business processes rather than experimenting with different software tools.


It was felt that managing IT for its geographically spread out locations

could be tough, more so when it is a non-IT organization where most users are

not technically trained.

The Challenge

The challenge was to keep up with the growth and quickly integrate all newly

acquired units. Before Wadhwa joined the company, each unit had its own systems

and it was thought better to go for an ERP system that could integrate all these

units. Unfortunately, things did not go well. Reasons Wadhwa, "Perhaps low IT

maturity of users coupled with the legacy software background where they could

order the programmer to make changes as per their whims and fancies were some of

the reasons why the implementation failed. Users had no idea of ERP systems."

Since the company achieved a healthy growth in the lifecycle, another challenge

was to bring the processes to a maturity level which was missing. In order to do

this, there was a need to emphasize on standardization and streamlining. Once

business processes are in place, automation is the easiest thing to do. This is

where using Microsoft solutions Wadhwa ensured that the business processes are

well streamlined. Changing from a legacy system to a new solution was also a

critical challenge for Wadhwa considering that most end users in a non-IT

organization are reluctant to adopt new technologies and they feel a comfort

factor with the legacy systems.


CIO, Punjab Chemicals and Crop Protection

Virtualization has yielded great results for us; with cloud

the only catch is the cost


Going Ahead

Wadhwa laid emphasis on business processes being in sync with users. Most units
and business processes were standardized. The company sometime back was using

Microsoft Dynamics NAV 4.0, while the software in use presently is the Microsoft

Dynamics NAV 2009. The plan is to shift to Microsoft Dynamics AX in the near

future. The Microsoft tools worked for the company due to two major reasons.

Says Wadhwa, "One being the cost factor and another that the adoption of tools

was quick, thanks to a user-friendly interface and easy maintainability, we

opted for Microsoft tools." Before Microsoft came into the picture, PCCPL was

using FACT and other custom FoxPro scripts for maintaining its master

information. The solutions that Microsoft provided included general ledger,

fixed assets, purchase and payment modules, and sales and receivables. Users

also did not have a problem using the interface as it was user-friendly. Going

forward, workflows and dashboards are being created for all users at all levels

and Navision 2009 gives the company a friendly user interface.

ITs All about the Cloud

As the CIO of PCCPL, Wadhwa has been a strong supporter of virtualization

and cloud. "Virtualization has yielded great results for us, and we are stepping

up the current infrastructure to bring in virtualization in our new

infrastructure. As far as cloud is concerned we have seen a lot of proof of

concepts and demos, the only catch is the cost," says Wadhwa. There is a need

for cost advantage for cloud based services; once thats achieved, most

organizations will move to cloud as it will help in saving huge on maintenance

and infrastructure costs.

PC Suraj