Successful inclusion of Dynamics NAV

Elbe-Werkstätten GmbH

The scope of services of M&P

  • Modernisation of the IT landscape through consistent use of standard modules in the existing Dynamics NAV
  • Implementation of sowis software as a certified industry solution for social enterprises and NAPA3 as a human resources management solution
  • Development of a module for mobile devices for the purpose of documentation and action planning
  • Implementation of needs analyses and specifications as well as taking on project management for three subject areas
  • Use of agile project methods with intensive exchange of information between all project participants

Elbe-Werkstätten modernises IT landscape with M&P

As a rehabilitation and care establishment, Elbe-Werkstätten GmbH takes care of around 3,100 people with disabilities, offering them work and individual support. With more than 40 production sites and 700 additional employees, the social enterprise is also one of Hamburg’s biggest employers. The company generates annual revenues of over €80 million. To connect to the digital world, a highly demanding migration project was launched with M&P in 2017.

Like any large industrial company, Elbe-Werkstätten has a wide range of administrative tasks to handle. Human resources, financial and contract management, production planning and calculation, scheduling of the work groups, procurement of materials, invoicing and cost rate accounting with service providers – it would not be feasible to carry out all that without efficient IT support.

The social enterprise has been putting its faith in Dynamics NAV for many years. The plan was to modernise the previous system, which was reliant on many individual adaptations, with the consistent use of standard modules. Elbe-Werkstätten opted for sowis as a certified industry solution for social enterprises and NAPA3 as a comprehensive human resources management solution – both on the basis of the latest version of Dynamics NAV.

The solution was supplemented by a module for documentation and action planning developed during the course of the project, which social education workers and officials can use directly from mobile devices. Thanks to a simple user interface and the process-related provision of the required information, the module was quickly accepted by users – an important condition in order to be able to access complete and reliable data in the future.


Short communication channels, quick feedback

During the 12-month project period, M&P carried out needs analyses, created specifications and took on project management for all three subject areas. Since Elbe-Werkstätten has a very experienced IT team of its own, the organisation was able to carry out many data transfer and standard migration tasks independently.

The intensive exchange of information between all participants was an essential component in the success of the project. The short communication channels between the internal IT team and the later users delivered valuable feedback regularly and at short notice, which could be immediately incorporated into the implementation. In this way, the advantages of the agile project methods were fully exploited. The conversion of finance and human resources and all standard components took place at the turn of the year 2017/2018. One particular challenge was converting the calculation and billing of the care costs with the cost bearers of the social welfare institution.

Around 3,100 cost rates of the individual contracts had to be determined and invoiced in accordance with the applicable invoicing regulations. The high level of flexibility of the sowis solution, which allowed all cases to be mapped through set-up and parameterisation, came to the fore here. The close cooperation between M&P and its strategic partner tegos Rosenheim GmbH, the manufacturer of the sowis solution, accelerated the pace of work and allowed solutions to be found in a flexible way.

By making the leap to Dynamics NAV 2017, Elbe-Werkstätten has prepared itself for the future. As individual programming is avoided as far as possible, new versions of Microsoft Dynamics NAV can be put into operation quickly after release and without great effort. Integration into Office 365 is automatic, and the successful completion of this migration project has also provided the best conditions to integrate cloud usage whenever it becomes necessary.

Elbe Werkstätten GmbH