Fisker’s approach to manufacturing electric vehicles is deeply aligned with its overall business philosophy: use less, use better and use again. This mindset has led the fast-growing EV company to engineer and build some of the most sustainable automobiles in the world.
As market leaders face a variety of economic and internal disruptions, fiskar has carved a niche for itself as one of the fastest growing EV companies in the world. It is trying to grow its revenue from effectively zero to hundreds of millions and potentially $1 billion by the end of 2023.
The company also plans to produce one million vehicles by 2027. To move forward effectively, however, the company needs to adopt a modern technological approach that can help it efficiently move cars into mass production while supporting expansion and revenue targets.
Zero to Sixty: When to Implement New ERP Software
“There is never a ‘good time’ to implement a core IT system,” said Ketan Gohil, chief enterprise architect at Fisker. “However, if you wait until you are 100 percent ready, you will be waiting forever. Because things will get more complicated as you build up increasing amounts of technical debt.”
For Fisker, the timing was particularly important, as the company wanted to move from a startup to becoming a major industry player. Its previous solutions were all on-premises and did not enable the purchasing or component purchasing functions required by the enterprise.
SAP’s expertise and experience in the automotive industry was attractive, as it helped equip the fixer with a standardized approach and best practices for rapid implementation.
“We were able to move faster and avoid optimization and technical debt,” Gohil said. “We wanted to be equipped for the future. We are ahead of the curve in the industry thanks to our business approach, and we needed our technology to stay ahead of the game as well.
Pay it forward: encouraging adoption and growth
Due to production commitments with various manufacturing partners, Fisker had limited flexibility in his timeline: things had to move quickly. Otherwise, there will be business consequences. Fortunately, that velocity is something SAP helps provide.
The IT transformation project focuses on three primary areas:
Despite initial user hesitation, Fisker was able to implement the SAP Cloud ERP In just 16 weeks. They brought people on board by adopting a phased “waterfall” approach to technology upgrades, where new features were added or implemented every two weeks after the initial go-live.
Thanks to new core systems and processes, Fisker is on track to meet a series of aggressive targets before the end of 2023. Furthermore, as the system continues to mature, so will the company along with it.
“SAP was a perfect fit for the stage we are in in the lifecycle of our company,” Gohil said. “We are ready to stand shoulder to shoulder tomorrow.”
Charge Up: IT Transformation Results
Today, Fisker can effectively support all business processes with its new cloud ERP core, despite growing 5x in the last year (and increasing the number of sub-companies from six to 16 worldwide).
“SAP has supported all that growth and change, without negatively impacting user adoption or effectiveness,” Gohil said. “Now, we are focused on turning best practices into next practices – that is, predicting and preparing for the future of our industry, in ways that best serve us as well as our customers.”
Vehicle management, service parts management and warranty management are particular areas of focus as Fisker continues to build out its IT systems. The EV company is also fully expanding to become a manufacturer and servicer after coming into the market.
In fact, Fisker has already started delivering cars in the US and Europe – the company expects to produce 20,000-23,000 units of its Fisker Ocean models by the end of the year.
“Our production progress validates our existence, and reinforces the importance of our SAP implementation,” said Fisker spokesman Mathieu Debord. “Everything is now in place for us to support our customers quickly and effectively for years to come.”
“This is how the implementation of an ERP system should be,” Gohil said. “You start small, take every right step along the way, and then the result will be growth.”