Success Story Medela

GUS-OS Suite for Swiss Babies

Medela stands for innovative solutions in healthcare. Founded in 1961 by Ole Larsson, the company is still owned by the founding family today, fifty years later. Ole Larsson made it his personal mission to contribute to people’s health through his work by applying research findings to the development of new products. This resulted in Medela’s Breastfeeding and Healthcare divisions.

This principle has proven to be highly effective. Medela’s products for breastfeeding have won innovation awards worldwide: awards for excellent medical design, innovative technology, the best new product, and finally, numerous reader awards by delighted parents…

However, the application of scientific findings is not the only reason for this success, but also excellent planning and quality management. Since 2009, the GUS-OS Suite has helped Medela to further optimize its business processes at the headquarters in Baar, Switzerland. The project was called MEGOS – Medela with GUS-OS – and replaced the legacy software that, amongst other things, could no longer meet the requirements of the Food and Drug Administration.

The FDA compliance of GUS-OS Suite and the experience of GUS in projects requiring validation were therefore important criteria for the decision to choose GUS Schweiz as Medela’s project partner.

For this reason, the focus was not necessarily on defining new business processes, but on implementing the already established processes with the help of a sustainable software solution. An important aspect was the need to integrate Medela’s highly heterogeneous software landscape better than it had previously been the case.

The external systems include a management information system, a warehouse management system, quality control software, and various subsystems such as inspection stations or labelers. The interfaces were not only adopted one-on-one, but also designed in such a way that the integration can be made more efficient.

In the process, it became apparent that the application-integrated workflow management in the GUS-OS Suite also supports the integration of third-party systems into comprehensive business processes. The communication with other systems can be integrated into the workflows as a work step. This also made it possible to design cross-departmental and cross-application processes.

An important step towards going live smoothly on March 30, 2009 was the offer by GUS Schweiz to provide a preliminary project in which the detailed specification of the new system was to be included. As a result, it was clear at an early stage how much adaptation the software would require. The aim was, after all, not to adapt the organization to the software, but vice-versa. For Medela, this meant additional security.

Only then did the actual project phase start with additional workshops and the inclusion of detailed specifications. The complete implementation was divided into ten subprojects by departments, business processes and responsibilities, such as Purchasing/Procurement, Logistics, Finance and Accounting. In addition, a pragmatic introduction process in three stages was agreed upon: first the essential processes, then the necessary ones, and finally the desirable processes. The live start in Baar was just the first major step, because Medela, with its 1100 employees in 15 subsidiaries, is a globally active group. In 2016, the company generated sales of 600 million Swiss francs, of which the Swiss market accounted for a mere two percent. The largest single market is the USA with 54 percent, followed by Germany with ten percent of sales. And here, in Germany, the introduction of GUS-OS Suite continues. In April 2011, GUS-OS was also launched at the branch in Erding near Munich. The introduction of GUS-OS is currently underway in the Netherlands, and there are plans to replace the previous quality control software with the GUS-OS Lab. Medela is at home in the global market. The GUS Group is happy to accompany it.