Too often, organizations discover after they’re up and running that their SAP GTS implementation is not being used fully—which means they’re not getting the ROI and performance they need. Reasons include missing components and modules, undocumented processes, and overlooked free trade agreements (FTA). This presents enterprises with a checklist for realizing the full benefits of SAP GTS.
The best place to start taking advantage of your SAP GTS solution is to understand the opportunities that FTAs bring to your organization. Once you’ve established that FTAs will benefit your company and set up your compliance policy, GTS is the next logical step to automate daily activities.
If you want to make the most of your FTA opportunities, make sure you have a GTCC (global trade compliance consultant) on your implementation team. The GTCC works with your implementation team to ensure that the GTS solution you select matches your business goals and aligns with your risk profile. This step is a competitive requirement for long-term success.
To Capitalize on Free Trade Agreement Benefits, Add a GTCC
Every problematic SAP GTS implementation we’ve seen has had a common trait: No one fluent in trade compliance to bridge the gap between IT and business needs. The addition of a GTCC brings true FTA insights to your organization. They help you explore the overall cost/benefit impact, and how it will affect your team’s daily activities. They mesh their knowledge with your business needs, aligning them with FTAs and ensuring that all compliance requirements are met. In this way, you can be confident that you are realizing all of the FTA opportunities available while providing an innovative way to pull ahead of the competition.
The GTCC can identify beneficial FTAs for your business that are not currently being used. That may be an asset, since your competition may also not be aware of the FTAs either. Also, by working with business stakeholders, GTCCs can align business and trade processes with goals with a high level of precision, recommending any necessary changes that need to be reflected in your final SAP GTS implementation while staying within industry guidelines. This will work to answer any questions around whether your SAP GTS solution meets the necessary FTA requirements before mistakes are made.
Addressing Known SAP GTS Challenges
When engaging a GTCC for your project effort, there are some key items to look for to ensure project success. Your GTCC must know key FTAs such as NAFTA (soon to be USMCA) inside and out, and be heavily involved in understanding FTAs across multiple trade markets. They will endeavor that you have best FTA compliance across the board. They must ensure the FTA is not overly burdensome, which bogs down compliance department workloads and costs money.
Understand the Key Benefits to Capitalizing on FTAs
The largest benefits of using a GTCC for FTAs goes beyond mitigating risk. Many key variables will need to be addressed to fully realize the potential gains that FTAs provide.
Process automation adds a tremendous amount of value, and makes FTAs work for your compliance department and your sales teams. This presents better dynamics for the compliance teams. SAP GTS is especially well-suited for FTAs. The competing software products on the market, while hitting the mark in some aspects of FTAs, miss in others and fall short in presenting a fully-functional FTA solution or more importantly have only limited capacity for integration with other ERPs, software, and SAP. These products often come with batch-managed data that prevent real-time usage, high maintenance costs, limited to no support, poor integration and connectivity, little to no audit capabilities, difficult user interfaces, and steep learning curves. This makes SAP GTS the one all-encompassing solution available that excels where the other software lack.
Free Trade Agreement Benefits Require Expert GTCC Consulting
An SAP GTS implementation will force you to remember the impact of international trade on your business. They must be an expert in your industry and flexible enough to adjust direction to best fit your needs.