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CLIENT CASE STUDY


Singapore ministry of finance: Shared services

Accenture helps Singapore Ministry of Finance to Cut IT Infrastructure Costs by 30 per cent with Shared System Implementation.

Overview

In 2005, the Singapore Ministry of Finance launched its Alliance for Corporate Excellence (ACE) programme to consolidate the IT systems and operating environments 11 agencies used to manage their human resources, payroll, finance and procurement functions.

In addition, the Government would drive efficiency gains and cut costs by sharing IT services and best practice, and improving reporting.

The Ministry of Finance engaged Accenture to deploy a standard ERP system for the 11 agencies and the Ministry of Finance selected the highly scalable and reliable SAP ECC 6.0 integrated application suite, running on Microsoft Windows Server and a Microsoft SQL Server database.

With Accenture’s help, 11 government agencies in Singapore developed a shared human resources, finance and procurement system which is expected to help them cut IT infrastructure costs by 30 per cent over the lifespan of the system.

The success of the initiative has demonstrated how a shared ERP system can drive efficiencies in government.

From August 2011 to January 2012, the shared system was further extended to another 4 agencies.

Opportunity

The Singapore Ministry of Finance seeks to create a better Singapore through Finance. It advances leading ideas, drives synergies across government and ensures fiscal prudence.

In 2005, several Singapore government agencies announced plans to upgrade or replace their existing enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems dependent. It became apparent to the Singapore Government that the existing model of “one system per agency” was not ideal. Information was often duplicated across systems and tasks were carried out inconsistently, resulting in waste and inefficiency.

Hence, the Singapore Ministry of Finance launched its Alliance for Corporate Excellence (ACE) programme. Under this initiative, the Ministry of Finance would consolidate the IT systems and operating environments 11 agencies used to manage their human resources, payroll, finance and procurement functions.

These agencies were the Agri-Food and Veterinarian Authority of Singapore, the Economic Development Board, International Enterprise Singapore, the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore, the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore, the National Heritage Board, the National Parks Board, the People’s Association, the Public Utilities Board, the Singapore Land Authority and the Science Centre Board.

This move made sense given the similarities in administrative procedures across these agencies. In addition, the Government would drive efficiency gains and cut costs by sharing IT services and best practice, and improving reporting.

Solution

The Ministry of Finance engaged Accenture to deploy a standard ERP system for the 11 agencies. Initially, Accenture’s technical specialists examined several ERP systems, taking note of each system’s total cost and ability to meet the Ministry’s needs.

Following Accenture’s assessment, the Ministry of Finance selected the highly scalable and reliable SAP ECC 6.0 integrated application suite, running on Microsoft Windows Server and a Microsoft SQL Server database.

“ACE supports key human resources, finance and procurement functions across 11 agencies, so the reliability and availability of the system have a direct impact on operational efficiency,” said the ACE Project Office, Ministry of Finance.

During the project, Accenture was the primary system integrator and was responsible for the overall programme management. Accenture specialists, highly proficient in SAP development and integration, worked with the Ministry of Finance and other participating agencies to design and deploy the shared system.

These specialists also provided insights into how the Ministry of Finance could optimise its ERP investment. They had previously helped the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore – one of the agencies participating in the ACE programme – transform its core IT systems.

Accenture also worked with Microsoft to complete quality reviews, and with Ministry of Finance staff to address potential areas for improvement to ensure the implementation ran smoothly.

“The Ministry established a true environment of trust and collaboration, and they had a clear focus on what they wanted their IT system to deliver,” said Vincent Wong, senior executive, Accenture Singapore. “This allowed us to deliver a world-class system that supported the Ministry’s vision of an agency that advances leading ideas, drives synergies across government and ensures fiscal prudence.”

The application suite was rolled out to around 12,000 users across the 11 agencies between October 2009 and April 2010. Accenture provided transition support, especially for users migrating to the new system from a non-SAP environment.

Accenture will manage the system until 2016, providing helpdesk support, application maintenance and conducting annual reviews to ensure the system continues to run smoothly and meets key performance indicators.

Results

With Accenture’s help, 11 government agencies in Singapore developed a shared human resources, finance and procurement system which is expected to help them cut IT infrastructure costs by 30 per cent over the lifespan of the system.

The Ministry of Finance and the participating agencies are achieving true high performance by using this integrated SAP system to drive operational efficiencies, reduce redundancy and waste, and improve the speed and quality of reporting.

The success of the initiative has demonstrated how a shared ERP system can drive efficiencies in government. In August 2010, the project received the prestigious MIS Asia IT Excellence Award in recognition of its achievements.

From August 2011 to January 2012, the shared system serving 11 agencies was further extended to another 4 agencies. They are Info-communications Development Authority of Singapore, National Environment Agency, National Council of Social Service and Singapore Sports Council. There are currently 15 agencies on the shared system with more than 17,000 users.