The 6th Annual Change Agents Awards celebrate the accomplishments of finance and supply chain leaders who have succeeded in accelerating innovation, digital transformation, and sustainability at their organizations.
We want to thank our customers and partners for sharing their unique and innovative stories and we are proud to present to you the 6th Annual Change Agents Awards winners and finalists!
Winner: Derrek Gafford | TrueBlue
Finance leaders are rethinking every aspect of their businesses—across finance, operations, workforce, and supply chains—to capitalize on new opportunities and resume growth. This award will go to the finance professional who has led the way in applying strategies and best practices that position their company for sustained innovation and the return to prosperity.
Virginia Wesleyan University
Winner: David Hohler | Glaukos
Supply chain leaders are heroically scrambling to put out fires and eliminate chaos while also predicting tomorrow’s trials and tribulations. The winner of this award will have succeeded in smoothing out new challenges impacting supply chains —by reimagining sourcing strategies, minimizing risk, leveraging automation, intelligence, and bridging the gap between planning and execution to exceed the current and future expectations of their customers.
Otsuka Pharmaceuticals Europe Ltd. (OPEL)
Newell Brands (Yankee Candle)
Winner: Bhavani Amirthalingam | Ameren Corporation
Manual activities and disparate processes are common barriers to innovation and digital transformation. This award will recognize an individual who has succeeded in crafting and deploying standardized processes—across an organization or entire enterprise—to accelerate innovation, streamline operations, lower costs, or achieve their company’s mission.
Avis Budget Group
Winner: Doug Hayes | Vetsource
Closing the books quickly at period end streamlines compliance activities and provides business leaders with actionable insights to guide strategic decisions. Difficulties in closing the books can also be indicative of underlying problems. This award celebrates an individual who has guided their team in closing the books fast despite challenges such as organizational complexity, business model diversity, or accounting practices.
Corporativo BIMBO, S.A de C.V.
Winner: Daniel Hong | The Wonderful Company
Every organization seeks to adopt best practices that will accurately forecast operational results and assess the consequences of various what-if scenarios. This award goes to the professional who is adept at producing precise plans and clear scenario models for finance, supply chain, marketing, workforce management, or projects.
Winner: Ritch Hartman | Compucom
Buyers behaviors and expectations are changing, which drive businesses to accelerate their digital transformation and launch new business models such as Omnichannel, Subscriptions, Direct-to-Consumer, usage-based pricing and mixed revenue of physical goods and services, etc. To accelerate time-to-market, organizations must focus on connecting and streamlining front-and back-office business processes. This award goes to organization with visionary finance, supply chain, technology or revenue operation practices that has enabled their company to expand its product portfolio or adopt new ways of doing business.
Winner: Richard Oberg | Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD)
The time is now to leverage information technology to act against climate change and its impacts. Organizations that weave sustainability into their operational business strategy are ensuring that they’re keeping both the planet and their bottom line in mind. This award goes to the organization using Oracle Cloud Applications—including industry-specific applications and analytics—to help drive its efforts towards a sustainable future.
Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E)
We're excited to highlight some of the 2023 Change Agents Awards nominees.
The Change Agents are submitted by individuals, but celebrate the achievements of their organizations, not individual accomplishments.
The Change Agents Awards are open to any organization that uses services under the Oracle Cloud (ERPM/SCM) umbrella and has achieved extraordinary results leveraging our technologies.
We have two main goals: to celebrate our extraordinary customers and to showcase their remarkable success stories on Oracle.com.
Finalists and winners are recognized on the Oracle Change Agents Awards web page and are celebrated via various social communications activities. Winners are also presented with a trophy in recognition of their achievement. Depending on current conditions, the announcement of finalists and winners may take place during a virtual event or at a live, in-person event.
We expect a high volume of submissions, so we’ll announce up to five finalists per category.
Yes, with very few exceptions. Review the program rules (PDF) for any current restrictions.
Yes. If you know of a person or organization that deserves recognition, please do. Be sure to include their contact details so we can reach out to see if they want to participate.
Absolutely. However, each organization may only submit one nomination per category. If nominations are submitted by one organization for additional categories, each nomination must be materially different than any others submitted.
Our judges are looking to highlight some of the incredible work our customers have been doing in recent years to increase their organization’s performance, lower costs, create positive impacts, and improve user experience for both employees and customers. When submitting your nomination, it helps considerably to include metrics and measurable results to demonstrate the extent of the impact Oracle’s Cloud solutions have had on the business and its people.
You’ll need information about the customer’s mission and a challenge they faced, how they’ve used Oracle Cloud (ERPM/SCM) to help overcome that challenge, and the results they achieved after implementing the solutions.
Unfortunately, no. All information is final as of the nomination period end date, which is listed on the Change Agents Awards home page.
The 2021 Oracle Change Agents Awards program received a record number of nominations. This year’s Winners and Finalists represent the most diverse group ever, with representation across many industries and global regions.
Recognizes industry pioneers who use Oracle ERP Cloud and/or Oracle EPM Cloud to deliver monumental savings using techniques such as process standardization and simplification.
ATCO Group took a “big bang” approach by simultaneously implementing a fully integrated Oracle ERP Cloud while updating business processes. They activated all lines of business and Oracle modules including Supply Chain Management, Human Capital Management and Finance at the same time, bringing together the necessary technology to support newly developed common processes. While making the transition from Oracle E-Business Suite to Oracle Cloud, ATCO Group took a critical look at all business operations and made changes to ensure there were no system customizations. This was a massive change from the old environment. ATCO Group’s efforts catalyzed a shift in the business for the organization’s 6,000+ employees, allowing for more efficient cross-function business operations. Their new, fully integrated system significantly reduced the number of manual journal entries and improved reporting by synchronizing and simplifying processes. Ultimately, ATCO Group saved approximately $20M.
Recognizes teams who have leveraged the Oracle Cloud for finance solutions to decrease close times by a large percentage.
Sandra Clarke, CFO for Blue Shield of California, has a proven track record of innovation. The finance organization developed an internal Center of Excellence and shaved four days off the monthly close process.
To begin this effort, Clarke supported the creation of a Finance Transformation team to help business units apply process improvement and project management principles. She also sponsored the creation of an Oracle Center of Excellence to govern a multi-tenant Oracle cloud environment (enterprise resource planning, human capital management, and Oracle Cloud infrastructure) to ensure that individual pillars operate in a unified manner. Executive sponsorship and consistent communication were key to ensure success of these two programs.
Clarke championed the formation of a cross-functional project team comprised of members across general accounting, finance consolidation, actuarial, accounts payable, cash management, finance transformation, and IT teams. This close collaboration led to a reduction of silos and improved information sharing. Clarke identified bottlenecks causing delays in the close process, such as manual workflows and approvals. Her team leveraged standard Oracle functionality to categorize and identify journal entries that could be automated, resulting in faster processing times and reducing manual labor.
These efforts led to:
Recognizes a shared services organization using Oracle Cloud for finance applications to develop digital capabilities to achieve best-in-class service delivery.
BOK Financial had multiple silo’d locations with a need to replace their antiquated and disparate legacy systems and home-grown applications with a modern finance structure. Considering the age and limited capabilities inherent in and built up over time in these legacy financial systems, it was becoming a critical factor in their future growth and success, as well as a system risk and compliance issue. Oracle Cloud solutions were chosen to provide a solid, integrated platform for modernizing the company’s back-office financial applications and the core of the company's business and finance operations.
As a shared services leader within the company, Art Karl, Senior Vice President for BOK Financial, is responsible for finance system support activities and business process efficiencies at the enterprise level, supporting all regional offices. As the project owner, key influencer, and strategic visionary, Karl worked to move the company from its unsupported legacy applications to modern Oracle Cloud financial applications. Thousands of employees adopted Oracle’s standard processes and best practices to streamline daily, weekly, and monthly activities and reporting, which has resulted in improved accuracy and accountability across the company.
Within one week of go-live, the AP department was processing more invoices per day than were previously able. BOK Financial showed successful leadership in moving the business from a high-touch invoice entry process to 98% no-touch utilizing Oracle Cloud’s invoice imaging capabilities. Employees now can spend more time assisting stakeholders rather than performing manual activities. For example: AP clerks can reach out to existing vendors and speak to them about converting from ACH or physical check payments, to using the company’s virtual credit card as their new method of payment. This finance transformation will provide a significant new line of revenue for the company.
Recognizes an effective combination of Oracle ERP Cloud and Oracle HCM Cloud solutions.
Swathi Potla, Deputy Director for The City of Atlanta’s Department of Finance, has a talent training and desire to share their knowledge skills and abilities. She wants everyone to succeed. Switching to Oracle Cloud at the City of Atlanta was a huge under taking given that they have over 9,000 employees with different levels of computer skills. But Potla’s patience is as large as her knowledge & skills set forth to build a body of reports to ease the transition to Oracle Cloud. She always has a smile and all questions have value.
Potla is the top talent or go to person for bridging the company’s needs and the Oracle Consultants. She trained a small team on writing reports and built parameters for testing each report before going live. Potla and her team also spend endless hours customizing reports to fit the unique diverse needs of different departments.
The City of Atlanta’s Department of Finance set up in Oracle an “Employee” section that allows employees to see everything associated with their employment. That includes but is not limited to, the employee’s benefits, online paycheck, training opportunities, track their training, access and responsibility in Oracle, performance evaluation, job opportunities and volunteer activities. Essentially a radio button that provides the employee with one step access. In the industry one step access is unheard of.
The HR portion has streamlined the employee’s ability to self-check their own performance, training, and benefits without having to leave their desk. And because it is in the cloud, they can use any device to view how they are doing. Oracle Cloud has also opened access to allow employees to apply for new positions and track the progression of their application. From the employer side, the managers now have at their fingertips on any device, the ability to track their employees progress, to get real time info on the number of filled vs vacant positions, etc. Prior to Oracle Cloud obtaining anything from HR was a long tedious paper driven process for both employee and employer.
Recognizes significant increase in agility using the rolling forecast capability in the Oracle EPM Cloud best-in-class service delivery.
Matthew Harbus, Senior Vice President for Freedom Mortgage Corporation, recognized the state of their industry and the potential opportunity to enhance his company’s financial reporting and forecasting. By exhibiting a proactive and forward-thinking mindset, he was able to create an infrastructure on Oracle Cloud that has allowed this company to grow into one of the largest in their industry. Harbus was the executive sponsor of the Oracle Financials Cloud and Oracle Planning and Budgeting Cloud implementation. He was directly involved in the day-to-day and executed their strategic plan to build dimensionality and automation into financial reporting and forecasting.
Before implementing Oracle Planning and Budgeting Cloud, the corporate finance team relied on manual spreadsheets and models. Oracle has enabled the company to combine multiple data sources into a single platform, which allowed them to automate financial reporting. Freedom Mortgage Corporation now easily manages pricing and the cost to originate and service along with other key performance indicators to drive value. After the Oracle implementation, corporate finance adopted a rolling forecast model, which updates based on current market conditions such as interest rate change. The automation and dimensionality from the Oracle implementation were the biggest drivers of project success. Without Oracle, the finance team would have difficulties reporting and forecasting for each of its departments at the speed required to remain competitive. Harbus’s leadership allowed his organization to achieve a more accurate forecast that updates on a rolling basis, enabling the business to make quicker and more informed decisions.
Recognizes financial planning and analysis professionals who leverage analytics to test business models and strengthen business impact.
Tina Mashiko, Vice President of Finance for Western Digital Corporation, is responsible for leading cross-functional teams to integrate finance and business processes following complex multibillion-dollar acquisitions. She continues to modernize and redefine financial planning by maximizing tools and piloting a data analytics center of excellence. Mashiko is the internal change agent responsible for establishing and co-chairing the Transformation Management Office (TMO), whose charter is to approve and govern all enterprise transformation projects including the implementation of Oracle ERP, EPM, SCM, and Analytics Cloud.
Under the seasoned leadership of Mashiko and her finance team, Western Digital was able to conquer two major challenges in a 30-day period. Using the real-time information available in Oracle EPM Cloud, Mashiko and Western Digital were able to pivot quickly and mitigate 98% of potential issues for customers, while simultaneously meeting government requirements.
With Oracle Cloud solutions, Western Digital Corporation is now able to provide employees with the ability to make data-driven decisions using optimized data access, higher data quality, and analytics through self-service applications and an enterprise-wide data warehouse. As a result of standardizing processes in the cloud, Western Digital has significantly reduced its data warehouse refresh time from 8.5 hours to 20 minutes while leveraging real-time operational and analytical reporting.