4 pages
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Cisco Analysis

October 24, 2015
Cisco System, Inc. an American multinational, headquartered in San Jose, California, U.S.A was founded
in the year 1984 by two Stanford computer scientists. The company’s product range involved networking
components with routers being the primary product. Tremendous structural \and organizational changes
took place in the company during 1988, John Morgridge was hired as the CEO and was responsible to
develop a professional management team. Cisco went public in the year 1990, after which its founders
sold all their shares and left Cisco. By the year 1997, Cisco was a part of the ‘FORTUNE 500’ companies
and was considered among the top 5 companies in return on investment/revenues and assets. Cisco’s
exceptional growth continued and in the year 1998 it had surpassed the $100 Billion mark.
Necessity of ERP
Pete Solvik joined as the new CIO in 1993. During this period Cisco was running the UNIX-based
software package to support core operating and transactional process. The UNIX system was supporting
three functional areas:
a. Financials
b. Manufacturing
c. Order Entry
The UNIX based package was suitable for companies with a revenue of 300 million dollars. Further, the
UNIX based system did not provide options to interaction between departments and had a restricted
access. The functional areas had become a lot customized over the years and the software lacked the
reliability and maintainability to meet the future requirements. The huge influx of date resulted in the
system being shut down for 2 days.
Solvik had realized this problem very early, but could not put forward the Enterprise Resource Planning
(ERP) solution due to the expense involved. Companies struggle with budget and complexity when it
plans to implement and install ERP application (Davenport, 1998)1. Instead he wanted every department
to decide by themselves over installing a new common architecture and database.
In an organization like Cisco, where a lot of data is processed simultaneously the ERP systems would be a
major advantage as they convert unequal, complex, and incomplete sets of data into a logically structured
format helping the decision-makers with a clear output. ERP also facilitates sophisticated processes which
enable firms to undertake complex volume and timing decisions relating both to the present and future
(Slack Chambers and Johnston, 2007)2. ERP systems facilitates incorporation of various functional
modules and provides a centralized database wherein several other software’s can be integrated across a
single platform (Hossain Patrick and Rashid, 2001)3. The software can pick up the required data from the

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