McConnell Dowell

McConnell Dowell

McConnell Dowell and Forpoint Driving Success With Infor & BlackLine

Long standing client’s McConnel Dowell have worked with Forpoint for the past 14 years, through the early days of the internet through to today.

McConnellDowell_logo

Company:

McConnell Dowell has built thousands of iconic, landmark assets, facilities and infrastructure around the world. When Group Finance Systems Manager, Inez Clement needed an ERP that served the entire business function end to end, she turned to Forpoint Solutions in 2010 for her Infor SunSystems solution.

Industry:

Construction

Company Size:

3,000+ Employees

Region:

Australia, New Zealand & Asia

Existing ERP:

BlackLine / Infor Sunsystems

Software Implemented:

blackline BLACKLINE

infor sunsystemsINFOR SUNSYSTEMS

 

The Challenge:

David Shahinian, Director of Forpoint Solutions, fondly recalls McConnell Dowell as one of their earliest clients who embraced their consulting services. As McConnell Dowell expanded globally, they underwent several upgrades to their systems.

Over the span of 8 years and across 2 projects, David and his team at Forpoint were entrusted with the task of upgrading McConnell Dowell’s systems from Infor SunSystems 5.2 to 5.4, and later from 5.4 to 6.2, across their offices in 9 different countries.

Upon the successful completion of the consolidation project, Inez approached David seeking assistance with streamlining the financial close process. After careful consideration, BlackLine emerged as the ideal solution, seamlessly integrating with McConnell Dowell’s existing Infor SunSystems setup. Leveraging Forpoint’s expertise in system integration, the next hurdle was automating the transfer of account balances from Infor SunSystems to BlackLine.

The project goals were aimed at:

  • Updating and servicing multiple solutions in offices across 9 countries.
  • Developing custom solutions for integration needs
  • Solving complex problems that required customised development &  implementation

 

 

The Solution:

We centralized all regional databases onto a single server in Australia and underwent a significant upgrade of our Infor SunSystems setup, transitioning from three dispersed servers to consolidating into one. It was quite a task, involving extensive preparation and testing to seamlessly merge the unique setups of those three servers. With around 40 databases spread across them, each had to be meticulously checked and integrated.

Given our reliance on Infor SunSystems for financial management and Workbench for project management, syncing master data from SunSystems to Workbench was crucial. Additionally, data such as AP invoicing, AR invoicing, and AR receipts needed to flow from Workbench to SunSystems. For instance, when AP invoice payments were processed, Workbench users needed immediate visibility, necessitating payment data to be sent back to Workbench.

Without this integration, the manual effort required to compile and disseminate data to end-users would have been staggering. The volume of data re-entry alone would have been overwhelming.

By automating the process to run overnight daily, we eliminated the need for manual data entry entirely. Finance only needed to be alerted if the import failed, enabling quick investigation. Ultimately, we achieved seamless daily data synchronization between systems with zero manual intervention.

This integration was rolled out across all McConnel Dowell sites in the region, delivering substantial time and cost savings for the company.

 

“Forpoint Solutions have always been there for me to rely upon. Their friendliness, responsiveness, and caring attitude have always supported our needs to find the best solution when we needed it.
When I talk about Forpoint – I refer to them as ‘My Support Friends.”
Inez Clement – Group Finance Systems Manager, McConnell Dowell

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Fitzroys

Fitzroys

Here’s how we helped Fitzroy’s gain visibility to their board

Fitzroy’s delivers on demand visibility to their board to make business decisions with Forpoint Solutions and Sage Intacct.

Fitzroys_logo

Company:

Fitzroys is an innovative, multifaceted property agency with a history of service and performance. Through our capacity to provide astute advice and consistently achieve high-quality outcomes, we have secured a respected position within the Australian property industry.

Industry:

Property Development

Company Size:

100+ Employees

Region:

Australia

Existing ERP:

Spreadsheets / Infor Sunsystems

Software Implemented:

sage intacct SAGE INTACCT

Elmo ELMO EXPENSES

The Challenge:

Fitzroy’s then financial controller Peter Gough was looking for a replacement of their old and cumbersome legacy system and replace it with an FMS that could not only replicate the existing functionality but also improve their business processes and reporting capabilities.

At the time, their accounting information was based on an on-premise solution and had no real-time reporting, which made it difficult to report to the board how the business was traveling, either through daily weekly, or monthly cycles.

There were also some team members who were afraid to change from old legacy system, fearing for their roles.

Ultimately there were many hours being utilized within the team to run, manage, and update the on-premise solution, as well as the need to run multiple Excel files and spreadsheets.

The project goals were aimed at:

  • Having a Real-time information cloud system with the ability to drill down and make immediate changes
  • A Fully accessible portal for the board of directors
  • A finance team fully invested in the product
  • A system that meets all our requirements
  • Developing high-end board reporting and in general high-end reporting

 

 

The Solution:

Fitzroy’s implementation with Forpoint was a mixture of in office and remote. The experience for Fitzroy’s was seamless, even with the complexities and remote nature of the process. They were able to log issues when they required and the Forpoint team acted quickly to action and resolve.

The solution was built in test environments to ensure the project did not interfere with the day to day of the existing system. Once the project was complete, tested, the team trained and ready to launch, the go live was as simple as flicking the switch with limited impact on the business.

 

“A key win for me has been able to sit in a board meeting, bring up Sage Intacct,
present a profit and loss report, drill down within that report, and answer questions on sales results.”  
Peter Gough – Financial Controller, Fitzroys

The Results

Fitzroys reported multiple quick wins in the first 3 months of the new sage intacct platform being launched.

  • Real time reporting allowed Peter to inform board members on the spot, actual PNL’s and sales reporting
  • Talking directly to the reporting on leasing fees, and granular details about property management fees

This information was previously available in multiple spreadsheets and reporting meant they were pulled up in the board meetings on the screen to talk through certain items.

I can run a report with a click of a button I can feel confident as a CFO, I have everything at my fingertips and can deliver on a platform that I wanted at board level.”

Peter Gough – Financial Controller

 

2 years on and new Financial Controller Scott Sutherland also finds that Sage Intacct has been a pivotal software for the company and coming from a SAP background, found that Sage Intacct was easier to use due to the dashboard feature. The team at Fitzroys are continuously evolving their process with Forpoint solutions as their long term partnership and business evolves.

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Yarra Trams

Yarra Trams

Here’s how saved thousands for Yarra Trams

By working together we achieved a compliant audit system and built an intuitive platform that can be access from anywhere.

YarraTrams

Company:

Yarra Trams in Melbourne is the world’s largest tram network consisting of seven locations: four depots, 206 trams, carrying over 60 million passengers more than 8.9 million kilometres per year.

Industry:

Transport

Company Size:

1000+ Employees

Region:

Melbourne, Australia

Existing ERP:

Spreadsheets

Key Software Used:

workday adaptive planning WORKDAY ADAPTIVE PLANNING

The Challenge:

Yarra Trams CFO Jon Fang came to Forpoint with issues related to still having quite manual processes in the finance team. Excel was being used heavily across the department, a very manual process that was limiting their ability to growth to the new business needs. The manual process was also dependant on a single resource to maintain the process and would result in discrepancies in the budget and forecast. The process also didn’t allow insight or analysis into the data. We knew there was a better way.

Yarra Trams CFO Jon Fang came to Forpoint with number of issues with the existing budgeting and financial planning tool which has led to the request for a replacement application; these include connectivity issues, unsatisfactory vendor support and, as a result, over-reliance on OCMS for ongoing support and over-reliance on Excel spreadsheets as inputs. Furthermore, once these issues are overcome, the existing application only allows for processing of aggregate data, and does not provide the capability to drill down into underlying detail.

Finance have conducted a month long trial on the “Adaptive Insights” (“A.I”) solution, concluding that this Cloud based solution, coupled with SLA with new Vendor is expected to deliver a significantly higher level of functionality, robustness and reliability than the existing solution

 

 

The Solution:

By engaging the Forpoint team for implementation and transformation of the FP&A we first needed to understand where the data in the existing OCMS was living and what valuable data was required to ensure that the business could amplify this function. The goals that were outlined in discovery were met through a comprehensive data analysis process and integration from Great Plains to Workday adaptive was seamless. The following was achieved through via our implementation team.

Now, Yarra Trams had the ability to:

  • Run a unified collaborative process in the finance function
  • Access a system of record that mitigates the risk of a resource reliant process
  • Utilise a system that requires finance resource only to augment (no IT resource required)
  • Easily provide sensitivity analysis
  • Solve complexity for Multi Financial reporting periods

 

yarra trams workday adaptive
“We love using Workday Adaptive Planning as I can respond to business needs and support decision with data too.”
Jon Fang, Manager, Financial Planning & Analysis

The Results

Yarra Trams has reported savings of thousands from deploying this solution, which has reduced manual labour and increased accuracy, not to mention being able to clearly see financial data in real-time and not having to wait until after end-of-the-month reports. Compliance for audit has become seamless and the intuitive system can be accessed from anywhere due to being cloud-based. Moving from spreadsheets means now, the need to manually enter from disparate spreadsheets is eliminated entirely, freeing up the team’s time to focus on forecasting and strategy.

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Weston Energy

Weston Energy

We helped Weston Energy process accounts receivables 30% faster

They were held back by limited, outdated financial management software.

Weston_energy

Company:

Weston Energy is a Sydney-based gas retailer, backed by Weston Aluminium, one of Australia’s leading recycling and industrial services businesses. Weston Energy helps its customers buy gas in new ways to keep the cost of energy down.

Industry:

Energy

Company Size:

<100

Region:

Australia

Existing ERP:

Spreadsheets

Key Software Used:

sage  intacct SAGE INTACCT

ASSET ACCOUNTANT ASSET ACCOUNTANT

The Challenge:

Held back by limited, outdated financial management software Weston Energy was facing several challenges with its legacy software, says its Financial Controller, Chris Mouradjallian. “Our previous financial management software was very outdated.”

“The solution was hosted on a server and it had very limited functionality. For instance, you couldn’t reverse or edit certain actions. It was very difficult to monitor and control our accounts receivables.” “We had a change in management within the business, so we were being asked to provide different financial reporting and data. Our previous system couldn’t help us meet these requirements.”

“Ours is a multi-entity business, and our previous solution was set up on a single entity structure. We needed a modern financial management solution that would allow us to manage multiple entities.”

     

    The Solution:

    Upgrading to a flexible, cloud accounting solution – Sage Intacct Facing these challenges, Weston Energy began browsing the market for a more capable accounting solution. With the help of Sage partner Forpoint Solutions, they chose Sage Intacct – a highly intuitive, cloud financial management solution that delivers deep accounting capabilities for scale-up and enterprise businesses, across all industries. Sage Intacct helps businesses gain real-time financial insights, automate complex processes, and its open API allows you to easily share data and connect multiple solutions. Mr Mouradjallian praised Forpoint Solutions for the dedicated support it has provided throughout Weston Energy’s journey with Sage Intacct. “The support we’ve received from Forpoint Solutions has been excellent. They’ve guided us throughout the entire process, from helping us identify the right solution for our needs, to implementing Sage Intacct and ensuring Weston Energy gets the most out of the solution.”

     

    sage-intacct-cloud-financial-management-solution-dashboard-screenshot
    “The support we’ve received from Forpoint Solutions has been excellent. They’ve guided us throughout the entire process, from helping us identify the right solution for our needs, to implementing Sage Intacct and ensuring Weston Energy gets the most out of the solution”
    Chris Mouradjallian, Financial Controller, Weston Energy

    The Results

     

    Gaining financial visibility and simplifying accounting across the business “Sage Intacct has helped us dramatically simplify our accounting processes. We can now process accounts receivables 30% quicker than with our previous solution,” says Mr Mouradjallian. “Sage Intacct makes it much easier to report on, monitor, and control our key accounting metrics, especially our accounts receivables and accounts payables.

    The solution’s intuitive dashboards provide an easy-to-use hub where you can see all the critical information you need, in real time.” “It’s a lot simpler and quicker to plan our cash flow with Sage Intacct. It has also helped us speed up the process of getting paid by debtors. It’s easy to see who owes us what, and chase accordingly.”

    “With Sage Intacct’s multi-entity capabilities, we will be able to gain much more financial visibility across our business. It will allow us to do reporting at the entity level, or gain a top level, business-wide picture of our finances. It will also help us with group reporting.” “Sage Intacct’s multi-entity capabilities will help us gain a lot of efficiencies across our business’ entities and groups. We will be able to set up structures in one entity and transfer it over to other entities, helping us save significant time.”

    “Sage Intacct is a very easy to use solution. The layout and functionality are intuitive, and it was easy to learn how to use the solution, with little training.” “The support we have received from Sage has been great. They are very on the ball and respond quickly when we need support.”

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    Spec Savers

    Spec Savers

    We helped Specsavers gain visibility across their 17,000 stores worldwide

    Specsavers urgently needed a new budgeting solution.

    Specsavers_logo

    Company:

    Specsavers is the largest optical retailer in Australia and New Zealand. It launched in Australia in 2007 and now has more than 350 stores providing affordable optical healthcare across the region.

    Industry:

    Retail

    Company Size:

    21,000 + Employees

    Region:

    UK, Europe, Australia/NZ

    Existing ERP:

    Spreadsheets

    Key Software Used:

    workday adaptive planning WORKDAY ADAPTIVE PLANNING

    The Challenge:

    Specsavers, a British multinational optical retail chain, offers optician services and eyewear in stores throughout the British Isles, Australasia, and the Nordic countries. As the business became more complex, the team’s spreadsheet-based processes began to show their cracks. Specsavers urgently needed a new budgeting solution.

    The challenges they were facing were:

    • Limited visibility into critical cost drivers, including headcount and travel
    • Lengthy budgeting process, requiring consolidation of 60 cost centres
    • Error-prone spreadsheets which detracted from finance’s more strategic responsibilities

     

    The Solution:

    With the help of technology partner Forpoint Solutions, Specsavers turned to Workday Adaptive Planning and was able to implement the solution in two months. Forpoint worked closely with Specsavers to prioritize and build out essential budgeting capabilities and helped build the required models to calculate costs related to headcount and travel—all in time for the annual budget.

    spec savers
    “One of the best things about Workday Adaptive Planning is how fast and easy it is to get up and running and start seeing results.”
    Head of Planning, Reporting, and Analysis, Specsavers

    The Results

    Deploying the Business Planning Cloud has dramatically reduced the time and effort Specsavers spends creating and consolidating budgets across 60 cost centres. More importantly, Specsavers now has visibility into and understanding of different cost drivers in order to control spending and manage growth. And soon they’ll be able to forecast more frequently as well as improve self-service reporting.

    What they were able to achieve:

    • Streamlined budgeting and consolidation, which enables budget changes to be made and reflected on the P&L statement within seconds rather than days
    • Better understanding of cost drivers and what-if-scenario modeling
    • Finance focused on strategy and growth rather than manipulating spreadsheets

    Forpoint continues to help Specsavers be at the forefront of their financial processes.

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    Want to know more about how Forpoint can help your finance team modernise?

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