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Customer Story

Columbia Sportswear - connecting active people with their passions faster than ever before

In the competitive industry of outdoor apparel, Columbia Sportswear is constantly striving to develop new technologies and advancements that can help people more comfortably enjoy being outdoors. Among its many products, the OutDry Extreme ECO brand1 — the company’s breathable, waterproof ,eco-conscious rainwear technology — has repeatedly received top industry awards2 ince its launch in 2017. To continue to excel in this market, the business needs to not only create high-tech products, but also maintain cutting-edge technology internally, so it can deliver products faster to the outdoor enthusiasts who depend on them.

To achieve these goals, in 2010, Columbia Sportswear embarked on the largest initiative in its more than 80-year history: the Global Business Transformation (GBT) project. This project was a framework of processes and systems designed to drive the company’s business practices on the path to operational leadership. This transformation primarily involved moving the wholesale infrastructure — along with pieces of its retail infrastructure — into the organization’s new SAP ERP-based landscape, which is currently the SAP Apparel and Footwear industry solution (version 6.08). Additionally, the initiative included major upgrades to the company’s non-SAP systems, including systems for planning, product lifecycle management, and warehouse management.

“The GBT initiative advanced our system landscape to that next level and put Columbia Sportswear in a position to better service our partners and customers into the future,” says Holly Day, Data Conversion Manager at Columbia Sportswear, who managed all the SAP data conversions during the initiative. “The more efficiently we can do our work, the faster we can get our product out there to the consumer, and that’s really what we were striving to do through this project.”

Read more about how Columbia Sportwear moved to SAP Apparel and Footwear, using automation software to speed and simplify data conversion process.