City of Atlanta

Oracle Customer Success

Atlanta goes all-in with Oracle Cloud back-office applications

Summary

The Georgia capital, a pioneer among cities, implements Oracle ERP, EPM, and HCM applications to automate and modernize its business processes.

Business challenges

When the city of Atlanta embarked on an ambitious application modernization program, it needed the blessing of a surprising source: the National Football League.

It was January 2019, and Atlanta was to host the Super Bowl in February. City officials wanted to go live with brand new cloud-based financial and HR applications, in part to support the demands of the massive sporting event, which draws hundreds of thousands of visitors to the city and requires it to hire and pay hundreds of temporary workers. But it had to get special clearance from the NFL, which generally frowns on its host cities embarking on major projects within six months of the Super Bowl.

It made sense to modernize our business processes using the latest software versions, which we get with SaaS. From the get-go, we decided it would be easier to implement best practices within Oracle Cloud applications and workflows.

John Gaffney

Deputy Chief Financial Officer, City of Atlanta

Why City of Atlanta chose Oracle

The NFL waved on the project, a large-scale deployment of Oracle Cloud ERP for finance and purchasing, Oracle Cloud EPM for budgeting and performance management, and Oracle Cloud HCM for core human resources, talent management, and payroll.

The city had been looking to upgrade its highly customized Oracle E-Business Suite of on-premises applications, as well as its Oracle Hyperion for Planning and Budgeting app. Initially, it considered a hybrid implementation, with both cloud and on-premises apps. But it decided that the all-in cloud approach would be easier and less expensive to manage, and it was attracted to the Oracle Cloud applications’ ease of implementation and use, as well as their security.

The effort was less about the technology per se, and more about changing the way the city conducts its finance, HR, and procurement operations, city officials say.

Results

After considering a hybrid cloud/on-premises implementation, the city concluded that an all-cloud approach would save it $17.5 million over 10 years compared with its previous on-premises approach.

Since the implementation, Atlanta’s finance department is completing its month-end close process in five days instead of 10, while the procurement department estimates it has reduced the amount of paper it uses by 80%. When the procurement department relocated, it required less office space because the team no longer receives, prints, or stores responses to requests for proposals in binders and boxes.

About six months after the implementation, 64% of the city’s invoices were electronic and could be processed automatically. As of the end of 2019, 90% to 95% of its invoice processing was digitized.

Another big benefit of Atlanta’s cloud modernization is that employees—even those traveling and in the field—can view their pay stubs, update their personal information, approve expenses, and access all other application features from any device.

The entire cloud project took less than 15 months from signed contracts to implementation, which was led by Oracle partner Deloitte.

There’s a lot of excitement in the public sector watching what we’re doing with Oracle Cloud.

Alfonso Piñan

Director of Financial Systems, City of Atlanta