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Digital Business Processes and Enterprise Systems

  • Teacher(s):   C.Legner  
  • Course given in: English
  • ECTS Credits: 6 credits
  • Schedule: Autumn Semester 2020-2021, 2.0h. course + 2.0h exercices (weekly average)
  •  sessions
  • site web du cours course website
  • Related programmes:
    Bachelor of Science (BSc) in Management

    Bachelor (BSc) in Economic Sciences



Effective business strategies increasingly center on the intelligent use of digital technologies. Today, the so-called SMACIT technologies (Social, Mobile, Analytics, Cloud, Internet of Things) lead to a profound transformation of enterprises in the way they work, organize and create value.

This course introduces students to the digitalization of enterprises, with an emphasis on the digitalization of business processes through innovative technologies and enterprise systems.

The course builds on management concepts that students know from their previous studies and links them to business process and IS design. Students will learn how digital firms use and implement innovative technologies to create opportunities to decentralize operations, accelerate market readiness and responsiveness, enhance interactions with customers and suppliers, as well as increase efficiencies across a variety of business functions.

From a technological view, students will evaluate different technologies and the functional capabilities of enterprise systems. They will also explore how latest technology innovations, such as chatbots, machine learning, robotics process automation or augmented reality, can be leveraged to redesign and improve business processes and achieve higher business performance.

At the end of the course, students will be able to

  1. explain the fundamental principles and concepts supporting the digital enterprise,
  2. design supply-side, demand-side and support processes – and their integration within the firm as well as with customers and suppliers,
  3. assess how innovative technologies – such as chatbots, machine learning, robotics process automation, or Internet of Things – transform an enterprise's way of working,
  4. gain an understanding the main components of current enterprise IT landscapes and the capabilities of enterprise systems, such as enterprise resource planning systems (ERP), supply chain management systems (SCM), customer relationship management systems (CRM) and business intelligence (BI) systems.

Particular emphasis will be given to put theoretical knowledge into practice by means of the integrated case study ALMIKA. Participants will gain hands-on experience with a commercial enterprise system (here: SAP Business ByDesign, an innovative cloud ERP system that integrates analytics and mobile applications).


This course will be structured as follows:

  1. Part I: The digital enterprise
    Technology innovations and their impact on enterprises
    Organizational design: Functions vs. processes
    Typical components of the enterprise IT landscape
  2. Part II: Supply-side business processes (procure-to-pay)
    Procurement planning and processing
    Supplier and procurement analysis
  3. Part III: Demand-side processes for product business (market-to-order, order-to-cash)
    Customer account management, marketing and sales
    Order fulfillment
  4. Part IV: Demand-side processes for service business (quote-to-cash) -
    Service vs. product business
    Customer project planning
    Customer project execution
  5. Part V: Financial processes
    Payment management
    Financial analysis

In 2020, this course will be operated in hybrid mode in accordance with UNIL's virtual token allocation system (see additional information in French and English).

With exception of the first lecture (September 14, 2020), which will be an introductory session, the lectures will be organized in two parts:

  • 12:30-14:00: Introduction and debriefing (live and recorded)
    - Introduction to the relevant management concepts and digital process
    - Debriefing and discussion of last week's exercises
  • 14:00-16:00: Self-paced, individual work on case study based on SAP Business ByDesign (live, with online assistance)
    - Self-paced learning with onsite/online support

The course will be given in English, but support for exercises is also available in French.


Class material (slides, exercises, and relevant readings) will be posted on the Moodle class website. The following publications provide an introduction to the topic:

  • Laudon K., Laudon J., Management Information Systems: Managing the Digital Firm, 15th Edition, Pearson, 2017.
  • Magal, S. R., Word, J.: Integrated Business Processes with ERP Systems, Wiley, 2012.


As prerequisite, students should have acquired a basic understanding of information systems, by following the 2nd year Bachelor course "Information Systems" or "Business Intelligence & Analytics".

All students must be present onsite (for students with a Yellow token) or on Zoom during the first session (September 14, 2020) to register on the participants list. Registrations will be confirmed during the second week of the semester.

Please note that this course is a prerequisite for UNIL's Master programs in Information Systems. We therefore will give priority to students who intend to enroll in the Master in IS (MSc IS) or the Master in Legal Issues, Crime and Security of Information Technologies (MLaw DCS).


First attempt

Oral 20min. minutes
Not allowed
Not allowed

The evaluation consists of two parts:

  • Integrated case study with individual (40%; multi-submissions in the deadlines announced by the lecturer) and group (10%; one submission per group in the deadline announced by the lecturer) assignments,
  • Oral exam (50%, online) covering the entire course content including group assignments.

Please note that the assignments require students to actively participate in each lab session and work on exercises from one week to the next.

Question and answer language for both "assignments" and "oral exam" is English.


Oral 20min. minutes
Not allowed
Not allowed

In case of reexamination, students will keep the grades obtained in their individual and group assignments.

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