Committed to Improving the Lives of Children
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Natus Medical, based out of San Carlos, California, was founded in 1989 as awareness within the United States grew regarding the importance of early detection of impaired hearing. The company soon became a leading provider of infant hearing screening systems. Since then, the company has expanded its line of infant healthcare products to cover areas of screening, detection, treatment, monitoring and tracking of common medical ailments, such as hearing impairment, neurological dysfunction, epilepsy, sleep disorders, and balance and mobility disorders.
Growth Drives the Need for Change
For the last 10 years, Natus Medical has experienced steady revenue growth, primarily through acquisitions across North America, Europe, and South America. Along the way, the company inherited legacy IT systems from SAP, Baan (Infor), Oracle, Sage, and QuickBooks. This amalgamation of systems became an IT management nightmare.
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"To support our global growth and acquisition strategy, we needed a single, modern, cost-effective, scalable, and reliable business platform," says Bharat Poria, senior director information technology at Natus Medical. "Our goals were to standardize operations and lower long term total cost of ownership."
Natus Medical needed an easily extensible solution with common processes across business functions and with local compliances for statutory requirements. This was important strategically as the company regularly acquired at least one organization per quarter. The new solution had to meet their budget requirements and be deployed in less than ten months.
Oracle's Commitment to Midsize Companies Makes the Difference
To help select the right solution, Natus Medical enlisted NTT DATA, a leading global IT service provider and a Platinum level member in the Oracle PartnerNetwork. NTT DATA provided assistance with both vendor selection and project implementation. After an extensive evaluation process, the team selected the Oracle Accelerate solution for the Oracle E-Business Suite primarily due to Oracle's commitment to and investment in Midsize companies.
"NTT DATA has extensive experience in advisory and implementation services spanning a number of leading vendors' solutions," says Jayanta Samanta, vice president, enterprise applications, NTT DATA. "Natus Medical considered solutions from SAP, Microsoft, Infor, and Oracle. After an extensive review, the Oracle Accelerate solution for Oracle E-Business Suite for the Life Sciences industry was determined to be the best fit."
"The Oracle Accelerate approach was very compelling from the perspectives of total cost of ownership, value, and vendor commitment," says Poria. "It was obvious that Oracle has invested a great deal of time and money in their solutions for midsize companies. The assets associated with Oracle Business Accelerators, such as business process flow videos and solution footprints, provided clear evidence that Oracle E-Business Suite had the built-in industry leading practices for Medical Devices that we needed to standardize processes across all global operations."
Natus Medical Standardizes on Best Practices with Oracle Business Accelerators
Oracle Accelerate provides simple to deploy, packaged, enterprise-class software solutions to growing midsize organizations. Oracle Business Accelerators are powerful, cloud-based rapid implementation tools developed and maintained by Oracle to get customers up and running on a wide range of Oracle applications, quickly and reliably. NTT DATA began using Oracle Accelerate and Oracle Business Accelerators in 2008 as they increased their focus on helping midsize companies maximize the return on their Oracle investments in emerging markets.
The extensive project scope for Natus Medical included (ERP), Siebel CRM, Agile Product Lifecycle Management, Demantra Demand Management, Advanced Supply Chain Planning, and Oracle Hyperion Enterprise Performance Management. For the Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) deployment phase, the project team relied heavily on the Oracle Business Accelerators business flow diagrams and videos to quickly and efficiently identify the functionality needed. These assets also helped develop the adoption and training plan to ensure a smooth transition from the existing processes in place across all disparate operating entities to a new user experience founded on industry standard practices. The requirements gathering, solution design, and documentation processes were cut in half to about six weeks.
"It made perfect business sense for our company to standardize on Oracle's world-class processes for the Medical Devices industry and it will make it easier to adopt new functionality and best practices in the future," says Poria. "We adopted about 90 percent of the existing leading practices included in the Oracle Business Accelerators."
Poria also estimates that, by establishing a ERP foundation based on leading practices, they reduced the time to deploy for the remaining project scope by almost two months.
Top Level Executive Sponsorship Assures Project Success
Oracle took an active and vested interest in the success of this project. The Oracle team, led by Mitch Tarica, area vice president, Midsize Sales, put a formal governance plan in motion before the project even started. Throughout the implementation, Oracle hosted a weekly call with the implementation team to review open items, project targets, and milestones.
Additionally, Natus Medical sponsored and hosted a monthly executive vendor meeting to review all status updates. These meetings were attended in person by their president and IT leadership as well as NTT DATA's president of Enterprise Application Services, an executive from Natus Medical's hardware vendor, and Tarica.
"Oracle provides customers with the option to have direct access to their software OEM," says Tarica. "Most of Oracle's competitors selling ERP to midsize companies can't or won't offer this level of access. They rely totally on partners."
A Successful Project by Any Measure
Natus Medical hosts all Oracle applications in-house while NTT DATA provides end-to-end technology and applications services. The NTT DATADATA team works closely with Natus Medical's IT Project Manager and Business Analysts to fine tune the industry processes within the Oracle applications.
"Fast growing companies deploying Oracle ERP should seriously consider adopting the industry leading practices in Oracle Business Accelerators," recommends Poria. "Exceptions should only be made if they impact revenue. The time and cost savings of this approach are substantial."
"From the start of the engagement cycle," adds Tarica, "it was clear that the assets associated with Oracle Business Accelerators helped the entire project team visualize how the work would flow once the new processes were in place."
"This project was a solid success for NTT DATA, Oracle, and—most importantly—Natus Medical," concludes Samanta. "With the help of Oracle Business Accelerators and the Oracle product teams we met our client's timeline for implementing this comprehensive suite of business solutions, which will help them keep pace with their strategic growth initiatives."
Listen in to this interesting conversation on Natus Medical Inc.'s experience with Oracle's Applications. Critical to Natus Medical Inc.'s growth strategy was the selection of an enterprise-class application to support key business functions and multiple geographies. Natus Medical implemented Oracle's Applications using Oracle Business Accelerators that provide best-in-class industry business flows to improve business performance and transform global business processes.