Customer Testimonial Video: Ryerson Inc.: Implementing Standard, Repeatable Processes

Ryerson Inc. is a leading processor and distributor of metals in North America. Discover how this industry leader is using SAP solutions for governance, risk, and compliance to overcome IT deficiencies, identify segregation-of-duty conflicts, maintain compliance, and achieve cost efficiency.

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    • Ryerson is a metals distributor. It's the largest distributor in North America, and we distribute just about any type of metals that could be bought or used. We have, as I mentioned, 80-plus service centers, so we are generally operated as a small warehouse in a local or regional sales area, and sell to the constituents in those markets. So our basic problem was that we had many deficiencies, particularly in the IT areas that we were working through, as well as throughout the rest of the company, and we were looking for ways to get a handle on that and also during that time, we were very dependent upon external audit resources, simply because we didn't have the expertise in-house. The first segment is we began to try to figure out what it was we had to do to maintain compliance. One of our goals was simply to reduce the number of deficiencies that were outstanding as well as reducing our dependence upon outside resources to maintain compliance. So, as we moved toward a zero-defect approach to Sarbanes-Oxley, and defects within our processes, we began to see the shift in business practice as well. As we deal with the external auditors and we deal with our own internal practices, the more we can standardize and have repeatable processes without heroics on the job to get things done, the more comfortable I am as a manager and the more comfortable we are as a company that we are in control and it's not dependent upon key people. We then put in all of our rules into the product, then we were able to begin to operate that and run that on a regular basis, which then helped identify segregation-of-duty conflicts that we had, but also it has the mechanism and the means to apply mitigating risks to those people that do have the segregation-of-duty conflicts. And that's when we began to see getting our head above the waters because we then could actually see and understand without an external auditor pointing it out to us where our issues were. Then we actually kind of closed the whole loop on the process and are able to on a regular, routine, standard basis, demonstrate that we have identified and remediated any segregation-of-duty conflicts. So one of our goals was compliance with cost efficiency in mind. So we began to take on more of the role that we were relying on our outside consultants to do. As we work through and put them in place, we're finding that we're getting the benefits we were hoping to in standardized practices and processes that are repeatable and auditable. So, I would look to continue to implement the products that we've been both implemented already and we'll plan to implement and really tighten up our own security and compliance controls. While we didn't justify the software on the basis of ROI, I would think we could go back and actually demonstrate a clear ROI on those products, simply from a cost-effectiveness perspective, which I think from a business perspective does help our company meet its cost and profitability objectives.
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