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Pioneering change

University of Waikato's digital transformation with Oracle Cloud

The University of Waikato recently implemented Oracle Cloud Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) and Human Capital Management (HCM) to support their defined future vision of excellence, distinctiveness, and international connectedness. 

Their existing on-premises finance system was over 20 years old, and had been augmented over time with numerous customisations, many of which were developed in-house. This introduced potential risks, given that some core financial processes were solely dependent on key technical staff to maintain.

As such, the University of Waikato approached Deloitte, having heard of Deloitte’s proven track record and other successful implementations at ACC, Stats NZ, NZ Customs and the Department of Internal Affairs.

The initiative to implement a scalable ERP and HCM, was part of a wider programme by the University of Waikato, aimed at providing a modern, holistic, and integrated Cloud-based solution, while at the same time standardising financial processes within the organisation. Automation and simplification were crucial to the success of this project, and a key performance indicator which the Deloitte Oracle team would need to achieve. 

Solution scope

The University of Waikato’s solution footprint included the following:

  • Oracle HCM - Core HR, Journeys (onboarding/cross boarding /offboarding) and recruiting.
  • Oracle Core Financials – cash management, fixed assets, accounts receivable and accounts payable, supplier portal.
  • Project financial management including costing, billing, budgeting and forecasting, time and labour and reporting).
  • Expenses including Corporate Card integration.
  • 50+ integrations including:
    • Procurement integration to and from Unimarket,
    • Asset Management to Oracle Fixed Assets module,
    • Student Management System,
    • Complex Payroll integration to and from Oracle HCM,
    • Automated bank statement uploads.

Outcomes

Deloitte successfully assisted the University of Waikato to achieve the following outcomes;

  • Introduce a modern cloud-based technology platform (Oracle Cloud ERP and HCM) to support their Finance and HR processes.
  • Uplift business processes and drive efficiency savings across Finance and HR such as:
    • Intelligent Document Recognition invoicing scanning solution to replace existing Payables processing and scanning system.
    • Supplier portal enables supplier self-service collaboration and maintenance.
    • Automated bank reconciliations.
    • Project reporting and dashboard for researchers.
    • Enabling supplier self-service collaboration and maintenance via Supplier portal.
  • Replace aging HR and Talent Management systems.
  • Simplified the technology landscape and drive a better user experience through a common ERP and HCM platform.
  • Use modern integration techniques to share data across strategic technology platforms and drive better insight and analytics.
  • Implement an ‘evergreen’ ERP platform, with ability to take on continuous improvements through regular release updates.

Unique successes

We worked collaboratively with the University of Waikato to design a solution that is fit-for-purpose, both individually and in aggregate.

Included in Deloitte’s delivery is a purpose-built project reporting tool and dashboard, which provides real-time visibility across all project financials. This capability was at the request of the University of Waikato research office team, who needed to simplify and support their research across various disciplines in one location.

The complex payroll system integration with HCM required substantial effort to implement but has been integral in retiring arduous paper-based processing, helping to free up the HR team’s time to focus on creating an environment when staff feel supported and a valued asset to the wider University.

“Our partnership with Deloitte was one of the key reasons for the successful implementation of our new Finance and HR Oracle cloud solutions. Deloitte brought their experience and thought-leadership to bear on the project, and we valued their commitment to the successful outcomes of the project, and their constructive focus on solutions, as well as looking ahead at what needed to be done to ensure a successful go-live,” says Jim Mercer, University of Waikato COO and Project Sponsor. 

Overall, the University of Waikato has seen: 

  • A significant reduction in manual, time consuming paper-based processes,
  • Improved compliance adherence with systematically automated processing, and
  • Increased confidence in their financial and HR data. The vast Oracle Cloud reporting capabilities allows the University of Waikato to drill down and analyse their data, expediating their ability to identify potential risk areas and opportunities for further improvement.

During the project implementation Deloitte developed a strong relationship with the University of Waikato senior leadership team, focused on final outcomes that were fit-for-purpose. Deloitte successfully challenged the University of Waikato to address pressure-points.

“Deloitte were very conscious of our internal drivers that were needed to realise the benefits on the project, and they ultimately balanced value for money with a capable team of experts on both the Finance ERP and HCM sides. They were instrumental in the project landing on time and within budget,” adds Jim Mercer.

Deloitte continues to provide both proactive/reactive support alongside a continuous delivery workstream to deliver ongoing projects and enhancements leveraging Oracle Cloud ERP and HCM capability.