Technology is everybody’s business, according to Sofigate. And Sofigate helps its customer companies and organizations to design, develop and implement business aligned technology solutions faster than anyone else. Now Sofigate is taking into use a new HR system (HCM – Human Capital Management) from Oracle that helps their own HR department to digitalize their work and become a more strategic partner for the business. As always, when it comes to creating successful implementation and results, a solid teamwork with a holistic perspective and a best practice mindset is essential.
The challenge has been a very manual and labor-intensive HR. Data regarding employees often gets “stuck” in the HR department and is not accessible for management in general. Managers or employees do not have any visibility to their own or their team members information. This is inefficient but can also cause a poor employee experience as people do not know for example the status of their question of request for help at any given moment. As people tended to tackle and resolve tasks individually, there was a lot of process variance. This can cause unwanted disruptive processes and long resolution time. Sofigate embarked on a journey to resolve this challenge with help from Oracle.
”The obvious choice for Sofigate was Oracle HCM, as the system capabilities match very well
with our business...”
Sofigate believes that the best way to select an HCM system (or any business supporting / enabling technology) is by mapping the business strategy and needed HR capabilities together (this is called the Business Technology Design method). This mapping will show you the priority order, investments and technology needed to cover and facilitate all the required capabilities. For Sofigate the main strategic HR drivers are understanding what talent they have, how that talent should be developed and how to best match employees strengths and interests with the existing project opportunities. When Sofigate gain clarity to their business drivers and how HR should support them, they selected HCM solutions from Oracle.
Holistic perspective and an open mindset are important
Sofigate and Oracle wanted to achieve the best possible solution in the given amount of time. Multi-year project plans with large Go-Lives and rollouts cannot be followed as before, because it is more important to focus on continually delivering small amounts of value, be ready to respond to changes, empower employees and understand “outside-in” what customers and other external / internal stakeholders really want. This requires close collaboration and constant open dialogue within the project team and all the stakeholders. It is necessary for everybody to know the vision, work iteratively and be willing to respond to changes at any time. Continuous learning through feedback is the core of the mindset. Sofigate’s Senior Vice President of Business Operations Sanna Siniketo describes this as: “Definitely not an HR project nor an HR system project. This project transforms the way we do business as we get a better visibility on our Human assets.”
Cloud system philosophy is great, as you can take so much “out of the box” – there is no need to tailor processes and Sofigate can implement many features that are already pre-built.
Implementation and launch
The project has gone smoothly so far; the technology implementation has been quick as it is a straightforward process. Transforming the ways of working always requires time and effort from everyone, but there is a huge interest to succeed and people are well engaged. It is important to reserve time for internal questions and agreeing how to align the processes and policies around the system, which may also reveal some unsolved ”issues” that need to be tackled before being able to move forward. System implementation is a great “excuse” to facilitate a needed change or transformation.
Oracle has been working with Sofigate since September 2020 and the planned Go-Live is at the end of January. During this time, the foundations of the HCM, Core HR, basic transactional processes, onboarding, offboarding, compensation management and reporting/self-service have been built and implemented. The team is now looking forward to the launch as well as creating more, new astonishing features for the users and stakeholders. Or to quote Johanna Lähde, Project Manager at Sofigate:
“This project moves HR practices at Sofigate from a “mud hut phase” directly to a “skyscraper phase”.
What started as one man’s courageous vision is now a growth company employing almost 600 people in Finland, Sweden and Denmark. Founded in 2003, Sofigate is the leader of IT Management in the Nordics and pioneer of Business Technology management in Northern Europe. They help their customers succeed in leading digitalization. They do it by combining world class technologies with best management practices and experts and taking a holistic approach to business technology transformation – including also the people side of change.
Sofigate Group is a privately-owned company with almost 200 shareholders. Personnel and management, of which 40 % are shareholders, own 94 % of the company. 6 % of the shares are owned by an external investor in Finland, LähiTapiola. In 2019 Sofigate Group’s revenue was 94 MEUR, which marks 17% growth compared to the previous year. In the end of 2019 Sofigate employed more than 550 people.