How to Understand Wipro’s Position on Lying

Executive Summary

  • Wipro has an interesting defense when called out for lying to National Grid about their SAP experience.
  • It is categorized under the heading of “catch us if you can.”

Wipro receives our highly coveted Golden Pinocchio Award for their responses to National Grid in their motion to dismiss. 

Introduction

When Wipro was sued by National Grid for failure around a $1 billion set of SAP implementations, National Grid made some accusations for which Wipro maintained a curious response.

The Claims by National Grid

“Wipro’s representations were knowingly or recklessly false when made,” the firm said at the time.

“As Wipro knew or should have known, it had neither the ability nor intent to assign appropriately experienced and skilled consultants to the Project because… it in fact had virtually no experience implementing an SAP platform for a US-regulated utility.” – The Register

The Wipro Response

“There was no explicit statement indicating that Wipro had not completed implementations of SAP for U.S.-based utilities nor were specific references provided in this regard.

Wipro also defends much of the language in the RFP response as common puffery implying that National Grid had a basic responsibility to check references.  UpperEdge has obtained copies of National Grid’s RFP and Wipro’s response and believes that Wipro has a reasonably good chance of having their motions to dismiss granted.  Oral arguments on these motions are to be held on June 10th.” – Upperedge

Conclusion

This defense from Wipro appears to be “catch us if you can.” And that the problem is not lying, but the fact that customers don’t fact check the lie. This brings up the question as to why anyone would listen to anything Wipro has to say. If it is false, Wipro will simply declare that the responsibility is on the receiver of the message for fact-checking Wipro.

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References

*https://upperedge.com/sap/wipro-responds-to-national-grids-sap-implementation-billion-dollar-lawsuit/

https://www.theregister.co.uk/2018/08/06/botched_sap_implementation_national_grid_wipro_settlement_75m/

Interesting Comment Snippets

Comment #1

“The problem most large customer service businesses have (water, gas, electricity, fixed or mobile telecoms, ISPs, etc) is that they mistakenly think that they’re not an IT business. So rather than build their own (or buy the IP of an existing system from which to build) they spend hundreds of millions on SAP and are then staggered when it doesn’t work out well.”

Comment #2

“SAP never makes sense. I used to implement it and there is about a 50% of disaster with marginal, at best, upside. Why people continue to implement SAP is a complete mystery to me. If there were any other business that sold a product which was enormously expensive, not infrequently destroyed their customers’ businesses and had upside in the 10% range, I doubt they would have a customer. SAP needs to stop blaming the SIs too. Every major SI has had many failed SAP projects. That means your software is a dog and near impossible to implement.”

Comment #3

“Wipro is a cheap alternative but you get what you pay for. They do have some good staff but they don’t pay very well and as it’s an overseas firm, not too many US workers, at least by comparison with the more expensive consultancies. That leads to a fair bit of turnover among the US workers especially when it’s discovered that raises don’t exist for the most part and greener pastures beckon. Much like IBM, really…”

Comment #4

“I think SAP is about to start getting replaced on a regular basis for a few reasons.

Their software is dog old. Ancient ABAP stuff from the 70s that has been hated by users since the 70s.

Their cloud story is a mess. They have all these random acquisitions which they are trying to squeeze in somewhere (ironically exactly what they used to make much of Oracle doing). They have their IaaS partnerships. They have a useless HEC cloud… A mess.

HANA is a complete money grab and the opposite of what people want in software. Everyone else is going SaaS where the software company includes and manages the database (even Oracle, the database company). SAP decided that people want to pay millions upon millions to flip out a mature database with an immature database and then manage it.”