Change can be challenging, but FD Technologies realised that its ambitions to grow in a competitive market needed to be backed up by effective back-office systems. It turned to Fujitsu to deliver an exciting Oracle Cloud platform for its Business Applications strategy.
As it wanted to position itself effectively for rapid expansion, FD Technologies looked to replace a series of disconnected, ageing, and underperforming legacy back-office systems and processes globally in 14 countries.
Using Fujitsu’s CloudScale approach, a fully integrated Oracle SaaS platform for growth was created, including CX (CPQ), Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP), Human Resource & Payroll interfaces (HCM), and Enterprise Performance Management (EPM).
- Successful go-live of a single Oracle global ERP system
- Improved data accuracy, insights, and decision making
- Global project management system, providing end-to-end workforce visibility
Oracle elected to use Fujitsu for the pre-sales and implementation work and the Fujitsu team was far more polished than their peers. The expertise there was evident.
David Humphries, Group COO, FD Technologies
20%+ increase in headcount since project initiation
100% operational visibility
14 countries globally
About the customer
Formed in 1996, FD Technologies is a leading provider of software and consulting services to some of the world’s largest companies, with around 3,000 employees in 20 offices worldwide. It comprises three main arms: a software and analytics division, a consulting business, and a smaller account-based marketing operation. Typical clients include the world’s largest finance, technology, healthcare, manufacturing, and energy institutions.
Unlocking insight, hindsight, and foresight
In the fiercely competitive markets of finance, technology, and energy, the margins between success and failure can be fine. Finding a critical competitive edge is a permanent imperative and constant challenge. It’s also an area where the really smart businesses call in outside help.
FD Technologies was founded with a mission to unlock insight, hindsight, and foresight for some of the world’s largest and most ambitious companies. More specifically, it aims to enable these businesses to realise the true value of their data, technology, and operations, with the ultimate goal of driving them forward. And in a constantly changing and evolving environment, the fact that FD Technologies has been active for nearly 30 years is a compelling testament to its innovation and tenacity.
“Our software helps financial services institutions do complex things quickly, to make sense of their data in real time,” explains David Humphries, Group Chief Operating Officer at FD Technologies. “That isn’t a very easy thing to do, and there are very few people who can do it. It gives us a real edge.”
The business’ consulting arm has also carved out an impressive reputation, with around 80 clients – typically capital banks – in the worlds leading financial centres. However, for Humphries, there are other key characteristics that set FD Technologies apart.
“There’s a real expertise here,” Humphries notes. “Our people follow a two-year training course so they can talk to clients in their language. That really helps us to differentiate ourselves from many other consultancies.”
Integrated, ready and usable
At the beginning of 2020, FD Technologies found itself at a crossroads. A change of leadership saw the arrival of a new CEO, and the business began to formulate some strong growth strategies. The plans and ambitions were exciting, but FD Technologies also realised that it needed to assess its own back-office operations and determine whether it was ready for the new challenges ahead.
“We’d probably outgrown our systems several years earlier; that was pretty widely acknowledged,” Humphries recalls. “Making changes can be a fairly challenging enterprise, but we were way beyond our old systems’ capabilities and functionalities and had to do something.”
There was an additional issue that FD Technologies wanted to address: the business was tangled in non-automated processes that didn’t integrate with each other effectively and management information sets weren’t as sophisticated or developed as they could be. There was a clear opportunity to carry out a comprehensive overhaul of the organisation’s processes.
“It was clear that there had to be systems answer to help the business grow which led us to making the decision to look at ERP,” says Humphries. “We went through a competitive tendering exercise and chose Oracle Cloud Services because of the breadth of the functionality it offered. Combined with support from Fujitsu, it felt like a more integrated, ready, and usable system than we could get elsewhere.
Enhanced visibility, improved operations
As a business that had grown successfully using custom-built solutions, Oracle was clearly a step up in terms of functionality for FD Technologies. However, Humphries could see that making the change and moving to the cloud would enhance visibility and improve operations. Adding further weight to the decision was Oracle’s decision to bring Fujitsu into the process.
“The way the Oracle technology represented our business was impressive, and that convinced us that it was the right way to go,” says Humphries. “Oracle elected to use Fujitsu for the pre-sales and implementation work and the Fujitsu team was far more polished than their peers. The expertise there was evident.”
Utilising the Fujitsu CloudScale suite of accelerators and tooling available to them (including IntelliTest automated testing, data migration tooling, and automated configuration deployment), the Fujitsu Oracle Cloud implementation consultants worked with FD Technologies to confirm its requirements, map out the implementation process and introduce the Oracle Cloud Applications to the business. It was time and effort well spent, enabling the teams to navigate through some inevitable bumps in the road and reach go-live against a backdrop of the changes in FD Technologies business.
“It’s always a bit of a challenge when you’re so familiar with what you’ve done in the past, but Fujitsu guided us through the new processes, controls, and reports,” says Humphries. “The team provided lots of sage advice that served us well.”
A unified and central view
As an integrated system with control points, FD Technologies now has access to improved and more accurate data sets. Taking custom information from applications, such as Salesforce and combining it with financial, HR, and banking data now gives the business a unified and central view of the entirety of its organisation. Key processes such as financial closes are now far stronger and more coherent, whilst project management is significantly more focused and better organised.
“The visibility and integration of end-to-end processes is a step improvement,” Humphries adds. “We’re getting data sets that tell us exactly where we are. We can actually see what’s happening and get into the guts of it, which we just didn’t have before. It was very much a ‘black box’.”
With FD Technologies increasing its headcount by over 20% since the process started, the trust it placed in the cloud-based scalability and flexibility that the new system offers, has paid of f handsomely. Hypercare and post-implementation support by Fujitsu has ensured that FD Technologies maximise the opportunities now available.
FD Technologies now has an effective ERP system ready to handle its ongoing expansion. Humphries and the rest of the business are now looking forward to exploring its capabilities even further and fine-tuning the reporting process to suit their exact needs.
“We’ve been assisted by Fujitsu to make sure that any issues are rapidly resolved and that the quarterly patching cycles have gone through with no major hitches,” Humphries concludes. “It’s all been handled very well.”