Oxford University Press to close systems 'for a number of weeks' as part of update

Posted on .

Oxford University Press (OUP) is closing its systems for “a number of weeks” from mid-March to mid-April, during which time the publisher will not be able to process sales orders or invoices, issues purchase orders, or respond as quickly to customer and supplier queries.

Shipments from OUP’s UK and US warehouses will also be disrupted during the same period and some purchase options on its e-commerce sites will also be offline.

The changes are happening as part of OUP’s efforts to modernise and streamline its back-office systems and processes with the introduction of a new SAP Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system, which it says will enable “consistent, standardised processes in areas such as procurement, inventory, manufacturing, supply chain, finance and customer service”. The majority of OUP’s digital services, platforms and products are unaffected by the changes.

A spokesperson told The Bookseller: “At OUP, we produce a wide range of products, including journals, monographs, reference works, music, textbooks and children’s books, and make these available across a range of languages, often in both print and digital formats.

“OUP is releasing a new enterprise resource planning system for both the UK and US to align our back-end systems and processes so that we can work as effectively as possible.

“To minimise the risk of any issues with our services after the ERP upgrade has happened, we are conducting a careful, controlled pause of our different systems, during a quieter time of the year, before moving to the new system.”

OUP said it “recognise[s] some customers may be impacted in the short-term" and said it has “updated them where necessary, including more specific updates since January”.

“We have also taken steps to help customers plan ahead, including supplying them with our bestselling titles for the shutdown period and working with wholesalers in both the US and UK to ensure stock and backlist titles will be available. Finally, we can confirm that our team will still be on hand to respond to any customer queries and provide support during the shutdown period.”

From the Bookseller: Mar 6, 2024 by Sian Bayley