Work Made Human

Work Made Human

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[MUSIC PLAYING] CHRIS LEONE: Hello, everyone. I'm very excited here today. I have a great guest, Rondy Ng, who's going to be joining me. My name is Chris Leone.

I run the Human Capital Management Development Organization here at Oracle. And I'm going to let Rondy introduce himself to all of you. RONDY NG: Hello, everyone. My name is Rondy Ng. I'm Chris's counterpart at Oracle. I'm responsible for all the ERP Applications Development.

I've been with the company for a very long time, have been partnering with Chris since the early PeopleSoft to Oracle days all the way until now. So very excited to be here. CHRIS LEONE: It has been a great run. And we've worked together for a very long time. So Rondy runs ERP, our ERP business here at Oracle. And obviously, if you've seen the market-- you've been out there-- our ERP business has been doing exceptionally well, just growing tremendously.

I want to ask Rondy a couple things. First, tell us a little bit about your success. Where have you seen successes in any particular industries? Second, I'd love to hear a little bit about what you're hearing from the CFO if there is anything that's top of mind for the CFO and then any trends that you're seeing in the market. That would be great. RONDY NG: Absolutely.

First of all, thank you. Thank you for acknowledging our success on the market, clearly, something very strategic to Oracle, very strategic to our staff investment at Oracle at all, very amazing adoption across the board in the back office space across many, many different industries. Now clearly, we've been on the market for about seven and a half years.

And there are about 7,500-plus customers already adopted. But more excitingly, there's about actually 5,800 customers who have gone live. Many of them are going through the different phases of deployment.

So I'll get into some of that later on. But first of all, in terms of industries, when we first started, we clearly had a lot of success with the services based industries, whether it's financial services, professional services, the big retailers. Now, in particular in retail, it's very interesting that we are very, very popular amongst the grocers as well as the restaurants. And we even actually had a micro industry in gaming, because we have started to dominate a lot of the Vegas casinos and hotels as well. Now clearly, even during the COVID, there were still a lot of good go-lives, including MGM just went live a few months ago. So yeah, the services industry is definitely our core bread and butter to start with.

But the interesting thing there is the momentum is actually starting to shift more and more into traditionally the more complex industries, the product-based manufacturers, high tech manufacturers like Western Digital and so on. And even getting into some that we didn't expect the momentum was going to build up, in some of the asset-intensive based industries, whether it's energy, utility, transportation like FedEx and UPS. So definitely very exciting to see a broad industry span across many of the customers, starting with finance and continuing to go on to many of the other related functions, whether it's supply chain manufacturing and some [INAUDIBLE] you're going to hear from Chris and myself on HCM as well. Now in terms of the geo, clearly, we're seeing-- just like many of the other cloud momentum-- we're starting to see a great momentum in North America and Western Europe. But Latin America and Japan are starting to expand very quickly as well. We're very focued on many of the key regions over there, whether it's Brazil, Mexico, or whether it's Australia, Singapore, Korea, Japan and so on.

We're starting to see bigger and bigger companies starting to get more and more comfortable deploying their finance transformation over there. Now, even more exciting than the adoption is the go-lives. Now, I understand that last year was very, very difficult for most of the customers, most of the industries out there. Now, even during a tough time like that, we have seen from March till now, basically over 600 go-lives. Just over the holiday seasons of Thanksgiving and Christmas and New Year holidays, there were over 110 go-lives across ERP and EPM.

And this is actually three times over the same period the year before. So that speaks to the CFOs and the CEOs that I talk to all the time. The digital finance transformation is no longer just a vision. But for many of them, it's a necessity to survive, especially during this period of time.

Now, key reasons for that-- one, they have to support their remote workers. They want to make sure that they are no longer shuffling papers and spreadsheets, closing the books, which I know that some of the on-prem customers are still struggling with. Second, visibility to the view of the business right now, not like the traditional view of, hey, after the close-- a few weeks later-- I know what's going on with the business.

But for them, it's about how you actually get to understand your business any day in the month, any day in the quarter. So I will be able to actually make the prediction. I'm making the shift in terms of the business directions using basically the most up-to-date data. Some of them are even deploying some of the machine learning and AI capabilities to predict the trend going forward.

Now, the other part that actually somebody may not necessarily be recognizing is a lot of our customers are going for rapid business changes, especially during this period of time. Now the small things like a big grocer needs to make payment changes. So in the past, they may be paying different people differently, based on their payment terms and so on. But right now, many of the big grocers have to actually focus on the payments to the big online vendors first, because that's the majority of their business. So to be able to actually adopt those kind of changes in a system very, very quickly-- I'm talking about in matters of hours, not necessarily in a matter of weeks, traditionally-- is a big thing.

Now, some of the businesses are shifting also. Whether it's buying and selling companies, the M&A and the investor interest, it's always something that is really critical during the rapid changes in a business in this generation. Now, at the same time, a lot of our companies that we serve are shifting from a product-based to an online-based and subscription models and so on. So all in all, all of these things going on in the finance space, we are very, very pleased to be able to help our customers in these journeys, especially during the tough times. So I know, a lot of information, a lot of great momentum-- I hope that I'm not taking too much of your time, Chris.

CHRIS LEONE: No, that's great. That's great. Yeah, I mean, the number of go-lives we've quoted-- you've quoted a great statistic of over 100 going live in just the last couple of months in HCM. We've had a number of customers, large customers.

I think we had over a million and a half employees get paid or go live on January 1, '21. It's just incredible to think what our customers are able to do with the pandemic happening, most working from home, and being able to get these large systems live and successful. It's great. And congratulations to all the go-lives.

It's just a great statistic. Let's talk a little bit about some of the customers that have gone live on both ERP and HCM. So part of this series coming up next, we're going to have TrueBlue and we're going to have YRC, two of our great joint customers, going to be talking a little bit about their go-lives-- some have been live for a couple of years-- and their successes and some of the value that they've seen personally in their own companies about the benefits of going live on HR and ERP together.

But from you, you work with a lot of customers. What have you seen-- some of the customers that have gone live on both ERP and HCM? RONDY NG: We have a lot of joint customers in ERP and HCM. That definitely speaks to a lot of our customers are recognizing the value of having a combined system.

Now, let me give you a few of the customer examples. Now, first of all, G4S-- it's a large multinational security services company. They're very low key, but they are also the world's second-largest private sector employer in the world-- over 600,000 employees. Now, after they have deployed ERP and HCM, I understand that they have been able to reduce their back office costs by almost 40%. Another example, VEON, is a multinational telco services provider based in Netherlands.

They operate all over Europe. And they have a 50% reduction in time needed to close the books-- amazing, amazing improvement over there. Tesco-- Tesco is a large retail chain.

And I think it's one of the largest in the world. They are $70 billion-plus in terms of annual revenue. They have automated a lot of the enterprise business processes across ERP and HCM for over 450,000 employees across 6,000-plus stores, across globally, OK? Khol's-- large, US-based, omnichannel retailer with more than 1,100 stores, in almost every single state in the US. They have been able to improve a lot of real-time data analytics across the enterprises.

They consolidated a lot of different environment and business processes and are able to actually get much better in terms of real-time data as well as decision making, thanks to a lot of the machine learning and AI that we're doing together with them. Caesars is another one. I talked about gaming and basically dominating Vegas. And this is one of the sub-industries that I'm very excited about.

And hopefully, Vegas is going to get back to the normal Vegas very soon. The Global Hospitality and Gaming-- they actually just recently got acquired by another company, Elderado. And basically, they have deployed everything, replacing the old Infor Infinium system with a full finance. And then from finance and sales, they go into HCM. Now, the other interesting thing is during this tough period of time, they were able to close the books remotely with 50% fewer finance staff than before, because they had to do a lot of furloughs. And clearly, because of the success over there, they were able to influence the HCM decision, continue to expand in all the functions that they didn't actually stop with.

And now, being part of the Elderado company, they're also actually influencing the headquarters of the combined company to also deploy the same system as well, so lots and lots of great customer momentum across our joint customers there. CHRIS LEONE: Yeah, I've heard a statistic lately that our joint customers-- so customers making what I'll call a one platform decision-- is passing the 40% range, meaning 40% of our customers that are buying or subscribing to our service are buying both ERP and HCM together. And that number just continues to increase. And obviously, it makes sense. And we'll talk about the benefits in just a second. But let me mention a few of the great joint customers that we have.

And I know we've worked on the Home Office together. So the Home Office is a great UK public sector agency that we've had in the Oracle family for a really long time. They went first live with financials and have just recently gone live in the last few months with our full HCM suite. And a great example hopefully opens up more of the UK public sector to us.

Securitas-- Securitas was probably one of our largest HCM go-lives in the last three months or four months. Securitas was live on financials then went live on HCM including payroll. And Jeremy, who's their CIO, is a great advocate of ours.

And just a lot of success-- they talk about the single data model. They talk about the integration between our payroll services to the subledgers, just things that they don't have to worry about. So that's another great story. And then financial services is one that ERP has been exceptionally strong. And you have many financial services customers.

And we have a joint implementation going on right now with Bank of New York Mellon, which is one that we're both following, so just a lot of great momentum and a lot of strategic global and local companies making a single platform decision. So it's great examples. And we'll have two more coming up right after our discussion to talk about what they've done. All right, let's talk a little bit about some of the benefits. So in your words, can you talk about some of the value? You gave some great statistics from customers achieving real tangible value in those customers examples. But just from what you've seen, and when you talk-- whether it's through the sales cycle or to customers post go-live-- what are some of the benefits, some of the value that you see with organizations adopting a single platform with ERP and HCM together? RONDY NG: Yeah, so clearly our customer is looking for a very customer-first focus, complete, proven, innovative leader in both the ERP and the HCM space.

And clearly, they are looking for the best capabilities, the best innovation, best user experience, and ultimately the best value for their companies. And our strategy at Oracle is always about a single, complete, integrated platform, single operating model to drive a lot of things. TCO clearly is a big thing. But let me just talk a little bit about tangibly what you mean by a single, integrated platform, in particular between ERP and HCM.

So first of all, the single data model, single source of truth, for shared data and metadata are extremely important in both systems, things like enterprise structures, legal entities, call centers, organizations. And don't think about just a static list of these kind of values, because these things are changing all the time. The role of the call centers are changing all the time.

The fact that these things are constantly changing and also affecting the way that you do, for example, approvals in HCM or maybe the way that we roll up data amongst the call center and organization hierarchies in finance-- the fact that we have one single source of truth-- we can always maintain a consistent view between ERP and HCM. So some people may not necessarily understand the complexity of managing multiple different systems for these kind of things. But when I talk to many of the joint customers that we have, this is really one big benefit that they see moving from separate systems into one single system.

Now, not to mention the employees. All right, we have talked about some of the customers that we have with tens of thousands of employees or even hundreds of thousands of employees trying to maintain the changes of employees and the details of the changes. Chris, you know that a lot better than I do.

But their volume of changes going on, and how it affects both ERP and HCM, it's not a trivial matter at all. The fact that we have one single integrated platform actually makes the world a lot easier to manage amongst these things. Separately, connected business processes-- I think it's very important to think about workflows, approvals, from finance, for example budgets, how we actually get the budget approval across a consistent management hierarchy that actually is sustainable in HCM, and all of your purchase orders, expense reports, and so on, maintaining a consistent view, again leveraging the shared data and metadata that I talked about earlier. Common reporting tooling, data queries-- good luck actually trying to get queries across two different databases.

Even within one single database, to get the latest and greatest-- not just actually using a query tool, but a consistent reporting environment-- they can drive real-time operational reports with your HCM data and your finance data together to help you manage your business-- extremely key, especially during this period of time. And then think about some of the advanced industries, some of their advanced functions, that are natively needed to be together, for example, project management. When you do project resource management, I need to understand the availability and skills of resources to assign to a project. If I'm not integrated, I have to actually go fish out something from a different system myself. It'll be a very complex integration to do.

Time card entry, expenses-- if you're in industries like public sector, you need grants management. All those are tightly coupled between HCM and ERP. Now, one of the things that I do want to actually highlight is finance and resource planning. This is an area that if you actually ask the CFOs and the CEOs of the world lately, everybody is very concerned about understanding how to predict going forward. How do I actually understand the view of the business right now? How do I actually look like, whether I'm going to [INAUDIBLE] to the right level of resources and budget expenses and my finance data in general towards the end of the month, end of the quarter? A lot of our finance community are extremely interested in looking at what the company from Oracle, like the technologies and innovations around prediction, machine learning, and AI-- when you think about machine learning and AI, it's about making sure that you have the latest and greatest information coming from your operational environment, like your HCM system or your finance system. If you don't have the latest and greatest, your prediction is only going to be as good as the data from months ago, or sometimes even earlier.

And it's not going to help you too much. Having one single, integrated, connected business process environment-- latest and greatest data in there-- it's extremely important for us to help enable this kind of high value function like prediction and forecasting. And not to mention that there are lots and lots of things that people want consistent user experiences. Both Chris and myself are investing heavily into the mobile experience, digital assistants, conversational user interfaces, collaboration on a tool like Zoom with digital assistants-- lots and lots of great innovations coming out.

CHRIS LEONE: Yeah, I was just going to say, on the security front, a lot of organizations are worried about the auditability of their systems and being able to find anomalies that are happening in the data. And we have a great capability. Beyond the audit-level tracking of changes in transactions, we have a governance risk and compliance solution that allows you to audit changes in the system, allows you to look at user provisioning and making sure there's segregation of duties.

And you're alerted to if you're giving a provision to a user that's in conflict with another provision. And that's a consistent capability across the entire suite. And with all of this concern about-- if you talk to Europe about GDPR and moving data, especially personally identifiable data, between systems, and you have to track where that is moving-- if you have a lot of different systems where you have employee data that's in many of those different systems, you have to track where that is.

Who has had access to it? If you have to forget an employee, you have to go do that across multiple systems. So centralizing that, having common auditability, having common tools to manage that really simplifies and lowers the cost of ownership from that perspective. Did you-- do you want to add one more thing, or-- RONDY NG: No, I was going to actually talk about just between HCM and ERP on a single environment, a single IT operating model is extremely important, right? Think about, both Chris and I actually are on a Monday, Wednesday, Friday meeting together to talk about customer go-lives and our operating model and so on. The idea about having a single consistent quality update model was something that actually, we have spent years together to perfect.

And now we've done that for almost three-plus years. And we are upgrading thousands of environments per weekend. It's an amazing clockwork. We've gone from there used to be a lot of variability to almost now like a machine driving that. Now, the benefit to the customers, clearly there, is they are able to get onto new innovations a lot faster.

So there's a constant supply of new innovations in a very predictable model. You pick the month. First Friday, we upgrade your test environment. And then the third Friday, we update your production environment. Being able to handle that consistently between ERP and HCM and any other fusion-type applications in the same environment, I think is a very important aspect.

I know that some of the people out there may think that, hey, I want to actually pick and choose different-- mix and match different cloud services together. I think in technology, you can do that. Well, frankly, operationally, it's difficult. You have different people, have different downtime, different caching cycle, different testing cycle. Operationally, it's not that trivial to do, and not to mention all the other business and functional benefits that's only possible when things are together.

Now, one last thing that I do want to actually talk about there is, now, both Chris and I talk to a lot of CFOs and CHROs, right? Traditionally, the two offices are not necessarily as connected, although they know that it's much more beneficial to work together. But the fact that most of these systems were disparate systems before was causing a lot of disparity in business processes and data and metadata. And sooner or later, actually, you got totally different views of the world. Now ISG has done a survey recently and said 68% of respondents amongst the CFOs and the CHRO officers, they said, combining the ERP and HCM system would actually foster a much stronger business partnership between these offices and enables a higher value contribution for the rest of their companies. And clearly, we do actually expect that our customers doing that will be able to leverage the systems and also actually handling a lot of the handshake between the two organizations and partner with them a lot more consistently than ever before. CHRIS LEONE: That's great.

That's great. OK, this is the last question for you. HCM-- we have a lot of customers. In ERP, you have probably 2x the number of customers we have. So and you talk to a lot of them, Rondy. So if you're talking to ERP customers that don't have HCM, what would you say to them? What would you advise them? RONDY NG: Now, you have to look at when we deploy these different business systems, especially something major like HCM or ERP, the two big complexities that people have to deal with-- number one, change management, number two, data, including the metadata.

Now, we've covered a lot of the business reasons why together is better. Now, I want to encourage our customers who have deployed Cloud ERP to consider that you have nailed basically these two aspects. And a lot of those are equally applicable when you do HCM. A lot of the change management-- we talk about what is operational change management.

We talk about basically metadata model, security model, user provisioning. A lot of those things that are really complex to manage, you already have that nailed in the ERP deployment. Extending into HCM is a no brainer. Now, same thing when you look at data-- data conversion, data standardization, the metadata, the hierarchies, the employees-- you have loaded a lot of the organization structure, your employees, the process of basically synchronizing all of that.

Extending that into deploying HCM is way easier comparing with you actually had to do it in a totally different HCM environment, not to mention all the technical cost and complexity and integration and extensibility and basically differences in user experiences. That may make it actually even more complicated to manage. So from my perspective, for the customers who have deployed ERP, it's almost a no brainer to continue to explore HCM Cloud from Oracle. And clearly, if there's any question about how actually we would be able to do that, if you have any questions or concerns, more than happy to actually support our customer base. So I can introduce Chris and his team to help you understand how to do that very easily. CHRIS LEONE: it doesn't get any better than that-- an endorsement from Rondy Ng.

So thank you very much Rondy. Honestly, thank you for taking the time. We have two great customers, two of our joint great customers coming up next.

And we're looking forward to their conversation. Thanks again, Rondy. RONDY NG: Thank you very much, Chris. I really enjoyed the session here. And best of luck and congratulations to the success of the HCM customer base as well.


2021-01-29 22:26

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