CGI helps Bell Canada streamline its HR operations with SAP solution implementation
“CGI employs among the best SAP Project Managers in North America and drives success through tried and tested (rigorous and structured) implementation methodologies.”
Robert Turner, Senior Director – Employee Services, Bell Canada
Bell Canada is Canada's largest supplier of telecommunications services. With one of the world’s most robust and reliable public switched networks, Bell Canada provides advanced voice, data and image communications to millions of business and residence customers across Canada.
Bell employs some 44,000 people and depends on its human resources information system to manage the storage and maintenance of employee data, the administration of benefits, the recording of time worked and vacation taken, and the production of its payroll. When Bell decided to upgrade its human resources system to better support its employees and organization, it turned to CGI to help it make the transition.
Over the years, Bell had made extensive modifications to the standard programs of its legacy human resources information systems. In addition, due to acquisitions and organizational changes, Bell ended up with several different HR systems and many different business processes. It was becoming increasingly clear that these modifications were hindering Bell’s ability to offer great service to its employees at a lower cost.
In deciding to migrate its system to the SAP HR solution, Bell was seeking to upgrade its technology and streamline its operations by consolidating its HR systems onto a single platform. Bell also mandated that system modifications to the standard SAP HR solution were not to be permitted. In doing so, Bell was also migrating to a single common set of business processes and ultimately reducing overall operational, technical and business operations costs.
Bell brought CGI on board to handle the technical configuration and development of the new solution. It also asked PricewaterhouseCoopers to assist in the redesign of its HR business processes to ensure they were aligned to best industry practices.
CGI needed to ensure that the new SAP HR solution would not require modifications to the standard SAP programs. It was also faced with the challenge of ensuring the system met the needs of Bell’s highly diversified workforce of unionized, clerical and management employees. Bell’s executives – and their decisions – are graded by employees through an employee feedback process, and CGI wanted the new solution to garner praise from all levels of the company.
CGI was selected for the project due to its deep technical expertise, its highly regarded SAP Center of Excellence and its proven ability to maintain the system following implementation. PricewaterhouseCoopers brought strong business process analysis and process design skills to the project.
The project partners decided to implement the system using a four-phased approach. The first phase covered the detailed scoping and planning of the project. Current business processes and technical environments were reviewed to understand how Bell was operating at the time. Strategic decisions were then made on how the company would use the SAP tool and operate in the “to be” mode. This would involve both technical and business process changes.
The second phase saw the launch of the formal, detailed “to be” requirement data gathering process and the technical design process.
The third phase involved development and unit testing, integration testing, and detailed user acceptance testing. In addition, a go/no-go mechanism was introduced. This would not only ensure that the project team felt ready for the go-live, but that the business and support teams would feel equally comfortable for system start up and to begin using the new business processes.
The final go-live phase was introduced in two steps. The team decided to first implement the solution in two representative business units – Bell Nexxia and Bell ActiMedia – before going live in all of the other units, which included Bell Canada, Bell Mobility, Bell ExpressVu, Bell Distribution Inc. and Bell Nordiq.
In a project of this magnitude, communication was key. Each of Bell’s business units appointed a prime to help the project team with requirements gathering and communication to employees. A steering committee met with the project team regularly to stay abreast of the project’s progress and help resolve any potential problems.
CGI’s key strength came to the fore in integrating the new SAP HR system into the existing legacy systems. This integration spanned systems that use HR data (such as the Bell intranet), systems that feed HR system data (such as time reporting and field personnel scheduling), and financial systems that report and record financial aspects of Bell’s payroll.
“CGI used its depth and breadth to help us drastically change the way we support the organization and its employees internally,” stated Robert Turner, Senior Director – Employee Services, Bell Canada. “CGI’s leadership team is committed to success and maintains the focus and flexibility required to persevere through complex and challenging projects.”
- SAP HR/3
- SAP Business Information Warehouse
- SAP Internet transaction server
CGI, PricewaterhouseCoopers and Bell Canada successfully implemented the SAP HR system on time and on budget. In fact, the first run of the new system generated fewer errors than the last run of Bell’s outgoing system. The Bell employees who work with the new solution were very involved in the project and are extremely pleased with their new tool . Bell employees are delighted as well. For the first time, they now have access to view and maintain their employee records (address, civil status, etc.), and they can also see their pay stubs online in a secure, user friendly manner.
Bell has achieved the efficiencies it was seeking in implementing the SAP solution, and since its implementation has made further improvements to the system.
“Harmonization/rationalization of HR processes and policies has generated approximately $2M in process efficiencies,” concluded Mr. Turner. “CGI employs among the best SAP Project Managers in North America and drives success through tried and tested (rigorous and structured) implementation methodologies.”
Contact us for more information