A systematic analysis of SAP enterprise resource planning (ERP) software implementation as accounting software in New Zealand organisations

Author: Komal Nagpal Sahni

Supervisors: Lorraine Skelton, Bing Dai

A systematic analysis of SAP Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software implementation as accounting software in New Zealand organisations

Komal Nagpal Sahni
30 July 2021

Sahni, K. N. (2021). A Systematic Analysis of SAP Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) Software Implementation as Accounting Software in New Zealand Organisations. (A partially redacted thesis submitted in partial fulfilment of the degree of Master of Applied Management at Auckland International Campus, Otago Polytechnic)  https://doi.org/10.34074/thes.5496


In this era of information technology, computerisation, and automation, Accounting Information Systems (AIS)  have become the foundation of every organisation. Previous studies explain that AIS is an integrated system providing financial and non-financial services. Thus, companies use the larger versions of enterprise resource planning system (ERP) software packages to integrate AIS into one application. The leading global AIS in the market are System Application and Product in Processing (SAP), Oracle, and Microsoft. This study focuses on SAP as an AIS because it is the market leader and owns more than fifty percent of the global market, as reported by various studies. SAP provides benefits to organisations. It helps in the transfer of data across organisations, despite the challenges confronted during implementation. Therefore, this study's primary focus is on understanding potential benefits, and challenges New Zealand (NZ) companies faced in SAP implementation, and the subsequent strategies to overcome those challenges. 
This study adopted interpretive research with an inductive approach. It was qualitative and was based on primary data collection through semi-structured interviews. The collected data was analysed using thematic analysis. The SAP potential benefits, and challenges in implementation, and coping mechanisms were reflected through themes using thematic analysis. 

The research findings disclosed potential benefits from implementing SAP software for NZ companies, namely, productivity of organisations, benefits to the users, real-time data, and stable and secured system. Additionally, findings unveil various SAP implementation challenges, including change management challenges, inadequate project management, technical challenges, knowledge challenges, and organisational challenges. Lastly, the results suggest the coping mechanisms to overcome SAP implementation challenges include training and education, legacy systems, top management support, allocation of adequate resources, and expert implementation team. This study provides a rich insight into the complex and challenging nature of the implementation process and the potential benefits the company might receive from implementing SAP in NZ. 
The research adds to the existing body of knowledge regarding SAP implementation in NZ companies; and contributes to the ability to assist organisations in their implementation efforts; and empowers project managers, SAP end-users, support-users, and implementers for better management of the inherent intricacy of the implementation process.

Keywords: ERP, ERP market, SAP implementation benefits, overcoming mechanisms, implementation challenges, SAP in New Zealand


This thesis is available under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives licence CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 International.

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