Cognizant Technology Solutions Corporation Improves the User Experience and Its Scalability by Upgrading Core Financial and Service Automation Systems
 
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Cognizant Technology Solutions Corporation Improves the User Experience and Its Scalability by Upgrading Core Financial and Service Automation Systems

Cognizant Technology Solutions Corporation is a leading provider of information technology, consulting, and business process outsourcing services, dedicated to helping the world’s leading companies build stronger businesses. The company combines a passion for client satisfaction, technology innovation, deep industry and business process expertise, and a global, collaborative workforce that embodies the future of work. With more than 50 delivery centers worldwide, Cognizant is a member of the NASDAQ-100, S&P 500, and Fortune 500, and is ranked among the top performing and fastest growing companies in the world. It is headquartered in the United States but has a global presence.

Cognizant uses Oracle’s PeopleSoft Financials, PeopleSoft supply chain management, and PeopleSoft Service Automation as the backbone for its business operations and accounting. Several core business processes reside on PeopleSoft, such as the project management lifecycle—which includes the creation of projects, staffing, time and expenses, and revenue recognition and billing—and core accounting—including general ledger and accounts payables. The company wished to upgrade from PeopleSoft 8.9 to PeopleSoft 9.1 to maintain consistent support and take advantage of performance and scalability improvements that enhance the user experience.

Working with Oracle Consulting, Cognizant upgraded one of the largest PeopleSoft deployments—running on a two terabyte database—on time and well within budget, with zero service disruption. After completing the upgrade, Cognizant will work over the next 12 to 18 months to roll out new functionality found in PeopleSoft 9.1 that will solve key business obstacles or enhance productivity and scalability. For instance, PeopleSoft 9.1 contains functionality that enables managers to approve expense reports via email, which enhances company efficiency.

 
 

 
 

Challenges

A word from Cognizant Technology Solutions Corporation

  • “We are very proud of the success of our recent upgrade to PeopleSoft Financials, PeopleSoft supply chain management, and PeopleSoft Service Automation 9.1. PeopleSoft is a core system for our company and a timely, high quality upgrade with absolute minimum impact on users was essential. The combination of a sound foundation from Oracle, plus Cognizant’s ability to factor in the user context and execute crisply, created exactly the result we needed.” – Karen McLoughlin, Chief Financial Officer, Cognizant Technology Solutions Corporation

  • Upgrade financial, service automation, and supply chain management applications to stay current on support and enhance performance
  • Enhance system scalability as the company continues to add customers and employees to support new IT, consulting, and business process outsourcing projects
  • Ensure zero system disruption during the upgrade
  • Acquire new functionality to enhance the user experience, such as express billing and tiered pricing for client projects

Solutions

  • Completed an upgrade to Oracle’s PeopleSoft Financials, PeopleSoft supply chain management, and PeopleSoft Service Automation 9.1 within 10 months while experiencing zero service disruption
  • Acquired ability for online expense report approval to enhance the user experience for the company’s 140,500 users and enable more efficient operations
  • Enabled Cognizant to institute tiered pricing, which is important as newer business lines require more intricate pricing models
  • Acquired a staffing workbench feature to process hundreds of project assignments daily, enhancing scalability
  • Inherited program management capabilities with PeopleSoft 9.1 that enables users to more efficiently track and aggregate project information, which is increasing in size and complexity

Implementation Process

Cognizant worked with Oracle Consulting on the upgrade, which took 10 months. Oracle Consulting played a significant role in the upgrade by providing advice on the overall plan, observing the test move-to-production process, fine-tuning the performance testing process, and coordinating between teams to resolve issues that may arise.

The upgrade was completed on time and within budget. The team hit the project cut-over period on the exact date planned 10 months earlier. In addition, Cognizant planned for a five-day cut-over, but was able to release PeopleSoft 9.1 to production a full day early.

“Completing a disruption-free and successful upgrade was of the utmost importance considering how critical Oracle’s PeopleSoft applications are to our company operations. I am delighted with the way this upgrade—an important milestone for 2012—was carefully planned and executed,” said Sukumar Rajagopal, senior vice president, chief information officer and head of innovation, Cognizant Technology Solutions Corporation.