Friday, August 15, 2014

#ChickenSad: ERP Transition That's Costing a Lot of Sad Faces for ChickenJoy Fans

Switching from one Enterprise Resoucre Planning (ERP) software from a new one, it has been since August 1 when Metro Manila citizens are having a shortage of Jollibee Chickenjoy and other food products from the largest food chain business in the Philippines. What caused such shortage in Chickenjoy of Jollibee? Is it due to the ERP migration glitch or the development company’s poor project management?

According to, about 72 Jollibee stores in Metro Manila were temporarily closed in the first two weeks of August due to the shortage of Chickenjoy supplies or none at all.

"Some of our stores are operating with a limited menu as we are currently upgrading our systems. Rest assured that we are committed to having all our products available again within a few days in all our affected stores", explained a representative of Jollibee through its Facebook fan page on August 7.

The Inquirer mentioned on its website that Jollibee Foods Corporation (JFC) filed a stock exchange report that the disruption of supply was due to a problem in the IT migration as they switch to a new system, but issues will be resolved within the next few days. JFC said that the transition affected their operations such as product loading, vehicle dispatching, and sales order taking.

The shortage of Chickenjoy, Spaghetti, and Yumburger among its food chain outlets received mixed reactions from local customers. The hashtag #ChickenSad went viral in social media channels and even caught the attention of leading newspaper media. shared some insights on the JFC's system switch problem:

1. System migration- JFC reportedly switched from one ERP system to another to manage its database and operations. The sudden migration was conducted in one blow and affected 72 stores in Metro Manila or more. The sudden migration was thought to have glitches due to poor project management planning, User-Acceptance-Test (UAT), migration planning, back up planning, and overall staff expertise execution. Should the project implementation team conduct the ERP migration in test batches/parallel run, bugs could have been fixed easier and within a controlled environment. Also, the old ERP system should have served as a support, while the tests are being run and bugs are fixed during the UAT/migration/action plan.

2. Questionable staffing- Issues arise whether the IT team who handles the JFC project is equipped enough to execute a major ERP migration. Also, questions arise whether the team has the expertise to properly manage the JFC project.

3. Lack of back up planning- It has been two weeks, but JFC still struggles with the supply of its popular food products as well as its customer service management. Questions arise whether JFC has prepared for a probable operational lag while their system is in transition, and the need for alternative management support.

4. ERP- JFC as having nationwide supply chain stores as well international franchise stores, should have given more time in planning for the Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software switch. The complexity of the processes involved in shifting the business operations system from one ERP to a new one should have allotted at least two to three years in completion instead of one year. Complications are expected to rise when User-Acceptance-Test (UAT), parallel run, migration series are rushed. Also, when the project is handled by developers who have no or minimal experience in ERP development-migration, disaster awaits the client.

5. Local IT support team- Nothing beats the dedication, competence, and reliable qualities of a neighbor.
When working on a big project, it is wise to seek the help of a trusted partner in the local industry. If you can find a qualified and experienced IT company in the Philippines who have trained staff to handle the ERP project, why go overseas? Business processes and corporate culture are better understood by a neighbor who knows how you operate for years. Thus, entrusting the core system of your business should be handled by a trustworthy colleague in the IT industry. Think of total quality, excellent project management, accurate result, and 24/7 IT support. It sounds difficult to find such IT company in the Philippines, but just search and you can have one. When you consider the value that these bring, price becomes a second priority. 

JFC's current situation prompts related IT companies in the Philippines to check their readiness in handling big companies who wish to shift from one ERP systemto another. This question brings into light the availability of professional ERP developers or IT personnel in the Philippines to accommodate local businesses. Also, the proposition that let Philippine-based IT companies work with local clients to facilitate a full-service development project with reputable quality standards.

Are you still #Chickensad? Let's help JFC overcome this system glitch by remaining loyal. Know more about Acumatica, an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) development company that 9DotStrategies are partnering with, call our Business Analyst at +1-510-936-8878 (US Direct) or +63 02 846-6845 (PH). We will be happy to guide you in your system transition plans.