After a three-year evaluation, The City of Ballarat has snubbed Oracle to become the 14th major Australian metropolitan council to choose a total financial and e-business system from AXS-One.
The decision came as The City of Hobsons Bay’s AXS-One implementation was nominated for a 2003 RealWare Award in the "Best Strategic Business Performance Management Application" section. The RealWare Awards, sponsored by CMP Media's Business Intelligence Group, recognise outstanding customer applications demonstrating innovative IT solutions and measurable business benefits for the intelligent enterprise.
The City of Ballarat began casting around for a solution after Oracle announced it was withdrawing support for its existing legacy system. It spent three years in comparative analysis of six different systems before opting to implement AXS-One rather than upgrade — a decision driven by anticipated cost savings, acquisition of new functionality and an admiration for the product’s Corporate Reporting software, capable of bringing together information from all Ballarat disparate council systems.
As a result it opted to adopt the full AXS-One Financial Suite, AXS-One Enterprise, as well as business process automation solutions in the areas of expense and budget cycle management.
Finance Director Alan Hall says AXS-One was selected as meeting all of council’s needs, not only as a replacement system but to add significant new functionality to improve processes and add efficiencies. He says the council is confident of achieving improved system compliance and timeliness of information from the decision.
“Other factors influencing the decision were the flexibility of the chart of accounts and strong flexible reporting. Equally the professionalism of AXS-One suggests that the implementation will be as smooth as possible,” Hall says.
Nor does Ballarat plan to do any mucking about in its efforts to achieve the new functionality, with the new system scheduled to be operational effective by the beginning of July.
With many larger councils facing mergers and electing to go "best of breed" in a range of systems from financial to HR, they can face problems when they seek to report across systems, which typically reside on diverse platforms. The vendor says its AXS OneView, which brings together all council information from any system regardless of vendor or platform into a common portal for complete analysis, reporting and information management, overcomes this. The company’s AXSPoint Central, which provides archival and content management technology, is also winning favour with many major councils.
For instance the City of Canada Bay, the first amalgamated metropolitan council in NSW, announced in February 2002 it had selected AXS-One Enterprise solution to integrate and streamline the work practices and financial data of the two merged councils. “The new financial management system had to meet some very specific requirements. For example: the workflow management of business processes; a superior management reporting function; and a seamless interface to other systems, especially our human resource management and land information systems. AXS- One meets all these requirements and more,” said Finance Manager Mark Wohlfiel.
Meanwhile Whitehorse Council has been using AXS-one since 1998.
And Hobsons Bay is using the software to help it use its information and knowledge to improve business practices. It is using OneView as a corporate reporting tool to provide benchmarks, key performance indicators and other statistical analysis. The product is being used by senior staff managers and directors to provide statistical information such as Variance Analysis, Key Performance Indicators, Customer Requests Tracking as well as providing links to supporting information such as Purchase Orders, GL Transactions, Payroll Details — all with drill down capabilities.
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