International Engineering Company Streamlines Global HR
Ayesa (formerly ByrneLooby) is an award-winning engineering design consultancy that provides solutions for geotechnical, marine and civil engineering construction projects around the world. With an international presence, the business has ten strategically located offices in Ireland, the UK and as far as The Middle East.
There are three objectives at the heart of Ayesa: ‘Technical Excellence’, Commitment To Clients and ‘Investment In People’. The company acknowledges its people as essential to delivering best-in-class engineering design and project management.
Challenge: Removing friction
Sharon Quinn joined Ayesa (then ByrneLooby) as HR Manager in January 2018 and quickly identified that the company’s HR systems and processes were creating both operational and cost inefficiency due to disparate datasets being held in different locations and by multiple providers.
Sharon set about seeking a solution that would deliver a single streamlined, cost-effective and efficient global HR solution.
In Sharon’s words: “As an international business, we needed a HR system that would allow us to manage all our data and processes in a single platform whilst ensuring compliance, but also reflect global differences. For example, it was vital that the software could automatically calculate complex leave entitlements across different countries and levels of seniority.”
Sharon continued: “Compliance is crucial in our industry. We have to be able to track what training employees undertake, check our chartered engineers complete 40 hours of continuous professional development required each year, and receive notifications when any training or certifications are up for renewal.”
Other important goals for Sharon included finding a system that would improve workforce visibility and allow Ayesa to further refine, improve and future-proof crucial elements of the HR remit such as recruitment and employee onboarding,
“Flexibility was key for us, as was ensuring that our chosen system would future-proof HR operations in line with our growth and international expansion,” explains Sharon.
Finding the right solution
Sharon and the Ayesa team drew up a shortlist of four global HR software providers before making the decision to select Cezanne HR in February 2018: “The other providers we met with were either unable to meet our specific training and absence tracking needs, or if they were able to do so, their pricing models were not cost effective.”
Ayesa opted to take a phased approach to the rollout of Cezanne HR, going live with the core ‘People and Absence’ module in March 2018, before implementing ‘Performance’, and then adding the modules for ‘Recruitment and Onboarding’ & ‘Lifecycle management’.
The positive impact on the business was almost immediate. For example, with an ISO certification audit coming up, Sharon was able to easily upload training records into the system, enabling her to pull necessary reports almost instantly, and replace a previously arduous data compilation and reporting exercise.
Moreover, the ability to track the cost of training spend in the same system provided Sharon and her team with added reassurance around budget management.
Built to adapt
The combination of specialist HR tools, system flexibility and global capabilities is now providing an optimal balance for Ayesa, allowing the organisation to take advantage of tried and tested functionality, while still providing the important system adaptations such as the freedom to reflect local differences.
Sharon was also pleased to learn that Cezanne HR’s system aligns with the ‘The Bradford Factor’ – the HR formula that allows employers to measure employee leave and gain valuable insight into unplanned absence patterns. The Bradford Factor is programmed into Cezanne HR’s system with an ongoing absence score being attributed to each employee, allowing for an actionable view of employee absence.
Furthermore, with an emphasis on the importance of training, Cezanne HR’s form builder means Ayesa has been able to create forms that can be filled out, submitted, tracked and approved in one central system. This takes away the complexity that previously existed with manual paper-based forms and requires much less administrative input from the HR team. Sharon adds: “The system enables employees to take greater ownership of their own training and development, which delivers a double-sided benefit: it empowers them whilst further reducing admin for the HR team.”
Managing international offices with different working weeks is also much less of a challenge since Ayesa (then Byrnelooby) adopted Cezanne HR. All cross-border intricacies – from time zones to public holidays – are covered, and employee salaries, bonuses and benefits can now be recorded in local currencies. “The system offers the best of both worlds – we have one single central system, yet we benefit from the local capabilities that exist within it. As a global but local organisation, this is immensely useful.”
Sharon Quinn, HR Manager
Cezanne HR’s onboarding module combines easy-to -set-up welcome portals with a configurable task manager that allows HR teams to orchestrate an optimal onboarding process for new employees. Sharon was closely involved in the development of Cezanne HR’s onboarding and employee lifecycle module, and the company was one of the first to adopt the module when it was released in May 2018.
Wanessa Brito, Cezanne HR’s professional services team leader, who worked closely with Sharon during the Ayesa implementation says: “The feedback we got from Sharon during the development of the onboarding module was invaluable. She’s a great user of the system, and happy to take the time to share her ideas with us.”
Sharon explains: “We have more than ten offices across the globe, the manual processes we previously used meant that bringing on new staff was time consuming and inconsistent. Cezanne HR’s system has very much transformed our HR operations for the better.”
Sharon adds: “The ‘checklists’ element of the onboarding module is especially helpful for new employees starting with the company. Now, at any point in time, I have a central view of which teams within the business have completed necessary tasks and which have not, and I can trigger the system to notify or remind individuals as needed. In addition, the new joiner is assigned a number of tasks to complete prior to starting which reduces my admin workload tenfold, and I can devote more time to strategic HR matters.”
Since signing up with Cezanne HR, Sharon says she has been impressed with the company’s quick and efficient implementation delivery and ongoing consultative approach. “It’s great to see that they listen to our ideas. The Cezanne HR team is very responsive and has acted on our feedback. They deliver a great ongoing customer experience.”