Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 Financials Helps France Telecom Drive Convergence.
by Anne Ozzimo, November 2008
In the telecommunications world, companies must differentiate themselves by developing and delivering innovative services. For established players such as France Telecom Group, the challenge is even more daunting: transform from a traditional network provider to a services provider able to deliver a broad, integrated portfolio of services to consumers. Those include mainstream services such as voice, data, and wireless as well as on-demand content from the music, multimedia television, and healthcare industries.
The NExT Step
France Telecom’s transformation began in 2005, when the company’s management team launched NExT—or New Experience in Telecom—to combine network convergence (fixed, mobile, and internet) with a wide range of new services for retail and business customers. By developing integrated content offerings and convergent services, the French telecom giant looked to drive operational synergies, manage costs more efficiently, and increase the effectiveness of its retail and commercial operations. Another component of the NExT program was to expand the reach of France Telecom’s Orange mobile brand, making Orange the international brand for mobile, broadband, multiplay, and all enterprise service offerings.
“Thanks to the NExT program, France Telecom is now Europe’s leading integrated telecommunications operator,” notes Stéphane Rougeot, group controller at France Telecom Group. “However, we’re still focused on becoming the benchmark telecom services provider in Europe and everywhere else we operate, in terms of innovation, quality of service, and economic performance. One way to help achieve that is to streamline our financial operations and processes in order to work in a more global, more reliable, and more reactive way. With Oracle, we’ve put into place the tools we need to help move the business forward.”
France Telecom is already one of Oracle’s largest customers worldwide. The €52.5 billion company uses a broad portfolio of Oracle solutions—including Oracle E-Business Suite, Oracle Essbase, Oracle’s PeopleSoft Enterprise applications, and Oracle Portal—to help service its 170 million customers worldwide. Oracle solutions are also at the heart of several new finance transformation programs France Telecom has launched to support its convergence strategy and achieve its industry benchmark goals. Oracle Essbase provides the analytic foundation for the “beyond transformation” program, implemented by Rougeot and his team to steer performance management within the company through continuous benchmarking of financial and operational indicators. “In our quickly changing market, cultural change is what will keep us ahead of the pack,” Rougeot explains. “Our focus on measuring and monitoring the progress of our group performance management approach helps us respond to ongoing change, using tools such as dashboards, benchmarks, and nonfinancial metrics in areas like corporate social responsibility. It is critical for us to have reporting systems that allow us to deliver these tools in a timely, reliable, and flexible way.” Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 is at the center of the group’s “new convergence” program, designed to help standardize France Telecom’s accounting and reporting systems.