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California fires contractor on tech project
lat ^ | 2/8/2013

Posted on 02/12/2013 12:05:23 AM PST by Selene

SAP Public Services' overhaul of a system for payroll and medical benefits for state employees is a failure, officials say. The state plans to try to recoup the $50 million it paid the firm.

SACRAMENTO – The state has fired the contractor on one of its biggest and most troubled technology projects after deep problems with the system were revealed.

The decision to terminate the contract Friday stalls the costly effort to overhaul an outdated and unstable computer network that issues paychecks and handles medical benefits for 240,000 state employees. The $371-million upgrade, known as the 21st Century Project, has fallen years behind schedule and tripled in cost.

(Excerpt) Read more at latimes.com ...


TOPICS: Government; US: California
KEYWORDS:

1 posted on 02/12/2013 12:05:32 AM PST by Selene
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To: Selene

$254 million down the drain.


2 posted on 02/12/2013 12:09:24 AM PST by Selene
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To: Selene
The $371-million upgrade, known as the 21st Century Project, has fallen years behind schedule and tripled in cost.

And this is surprising, why?
LMBO

3 posted on 02/12/2013 12:11:57 AM PST by Lancey Howard
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To: Selene

There are private companies with that many employees. How come these companies don’t suffer the same problems as State government? Is the secret word: corruption?


4 posted on 02/12/2013 12:12:39 AM PST by Cowboy Bob (Soon the "invisible hand" will press the economic "reset" button.)
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To: Selene

Trouble with govt contractors ping


5 posted on 02/12/2013 12:45:07 AM PST by gleeaikin
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To: Selene

Massive, horribly over-priced, hopelessly inefficient government gets massive, horribly over-priced, hopelessly inefficient software system. California government and SAP - no one can say they don’t deserve each other.


6 posted on 02/12/2013 12:58:44 AM PST by AnotherUnixGeek
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To: Selene

After years of watching the military and it’s win-lose game with contractors on high-tech projects....I can generally say this.

If you sit down and list the precise nature of software/hardware package that you desire in the end...and never go back to fiddle with it...change the requirements...or modify things in mid-stream....then the project is usually a success. I would make a guess that California had numerous changes to their package requirements, and just kept changing things.


7 posted on 02/12/2013 2:21:51 AM PST by pepsionice
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To: Selene

SAP, the single most failed software that idiots keep buying for some strange reason. I’ve seen many SAP failures and those projects are not cheap. Many are in the $100 million range.


8 posted on 02/12/2013 3:43:12 AM PST by CodeToad (Liberals are bloodsucking ticks. We need to light the matchstick to burn them off.)
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To: pepsionice

“I would make a guess that California had numerous changes to their package requirements, and just kept changing things.”

I would guess SAP was at fault. They over promise and under deliver. Think about this: For years SAP has been writing that software and they promise off the shelf capabilities, yet, every module always requires a million plus bucks to make run.


9 posted on 02/12/2013 3:45:34 AM PST by CodeToad (Liberals are bloodsucking ticks. We need to light the matchstick to burn them off.)
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To: Selene

This is just Solyndra on a smaller scale. Follow the money.


10 posted on 02/12/2013 4:02:35 AM PST by radioone
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To: CodeToad
yet, every module always requires a million plus bucks to make run.

Yep, that's why I want to be an SAP consultant.

Seriously, SAP does things with large volumes of data that no one else can approach. Things like sub-second lookup on a 250 million invoice DB.

11 posted on 02/12/2013 5:04:23 AM PST by glorgau
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To: CodeToad

Every year, the legislature changes the benefits system. SAP has to change the code every year to conform to the new rules.


12 posted on 02/12/2013 5:11:53 AM PST by AppyPappy (If you aren't part of the solution, there is good money to be made prolonging the problem.)
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To: glorgau
Seriously, SAP does things with large volumes of data that no one else can approach. Things like sub-second lookup on a 250 million invoice DB.

Not in my experience

I have had the misfortune of working with SAP for about 10 years now and have found the system to be iceberg slow and user unfriendly.

The system may be great for accountants and statisticians but for people working in trenches it is a pain in the a$$.

13 posted on 02/12/2013 5:15:45 AM PST by Pontiac (The welfare state must fail because it is contrary to human nature and diminishes the human spirit.)
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To: Selene
This is simply further proof that large massive bureaucracies cannot do anything that is all complex. It brings to mind the Census Bureau attempting to make a complete map of the US, detailing every street and house. They spent $2 Billion (back when a billion was a lot of money), and totally failed. Meanwhile, several small startups did what the government failed at, and sold it for several bucks on a CD.

I have been involved in a couple of software projects administered by a bureaucracy. It is simply astounding what foolish, irrelevant features are demanded by the arm chair "leaders". I would blame the state of CA on this one, not the poor contractors. Nevertheless, I'm sure CA will drive them into bankruptcy, anyway, to cover their own incompetence.

14 posted on 02/12/2013 5:30:18 AM PST by norwaypinesavage (Galileo: In science, the authority of a thousand is not worth the humble reasoning of one individual)
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To: Selene
SAP = Suck Away Profits
15 posted on 02/12/2013 5:30:31 AM PST by Hoodat ("As for God, His way is perfect" - Psalm 18:30)
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To: Cowboy Bob
Is the secret word: corruption?

While that is a possibility, private companies are just as susceptible to corruption as gov'ts.

I believe it would be more accurate to state that the issue is regulations and laws that apply to gov't agencies that don't really apply to private companies.

16 posted on 02/12/2013 5:34:45 AM PST by ShadowAce (Linux -- The Ultimate Windows Service Pack)
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To: AnotherUnixGeek

Well stated.


17 posted on 02/12/2013 5:34:45 AM PST by Hoodat ("As for God, His way is perfect" - Psalm 18:30)
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To: Selene

SAP can work very well for an organization. It’s gotten better, but you wind up having a more successful implementation if you do things the SAP way. Many times, this means changing the organization’s operations. And, after the upheaval is over, you usually wind up with a more efficient organization.

But government bureaucracies do not value efficiency. Thus, a computer project that is aimed to maximize efficiency will be sabotaged from within.


18 posted on 02/12/2013 7:02:35 AM PST by Incorrigible (If I lead, follow me; If I pause, push me; If I retreat, kill me.)
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To: Selene
List of California State Agencies

There is a word for this: Byzantine. I doubt it is possible to develop an accounting system for this monstrosity. And even if you got it to work the communists in Sacramento are constantly creating reams of new rules, regulations, and laws.

19 posted on 02/12/2013 7:36:14 AM PST by Count of Monte Fisto
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To: glorgau

“Things like sub-second lookup on a 250 million invoice DB. “

I can do that with SQL without breaking a sweat. SAP is a tired technology that never did work very well.


20 posted on 02/12/2013 8:13:30 AM PST by CodeToad (Liberals are bloodsucking ticks. We need to light the matchstick to burn them off.)
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To: Selene
$254 million down the drain

No big deal: it's only money. If it were something important I'd get excited about it.

21 posted on 02/12/2013 8:25:21 AM PST by dearolddad (/i>)
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To: Selene

I had a long tenure with a Fortune 500 company which decided to implement SAP. At age 53 it became the “final staw” in my decision to quit and begin a second career.


22 posted on 02/12/2013 10:42:03 AM PST by TexasKamaAina
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