NZ Post opts for Unit4 ERP to aid digital transformation

New Zealand Post has replaced its PeopleSoft ERP system with one from Unit4 as part of digital transformation to counter the impacts of digital disruption on its traditional businesses.

NZ Post’s mail delivery business is declining at more than 10 percent annually. Five years ago it was delivering more than one billion items annually, and the figure is now down to about 650 million.

There has also been a dramatic shift from letters to parcels driven by online shopping, forcing NZ Post has to fight a new breed of international and domestic competitors by forming partnerships and striving for excellence in customer service.

NZ Post also operates Kiwibank, New Zealand’s largest wholly New Zealand owned bank. Like all other established banks it too must undergo digital transformation to survive in the digital era.

NZ Post CFO, David Walsh, says deploying Unit4’s Business World ERP platform has enabled NZ Post’s business transformation and created a pillar for future competiveness.

“Unit4’s Business World ERP platform is an enabler of our transformation program, and a pillar for our future competiveness,” he said. “It provides us with a platform that’s extremely cost-effective to run, literally ‘millions’ cheaper than its predecessor PeopleSoft, and a platform that allows the business to be in charge – enabling each unit to change as fast and radical as they need to without losing control or being dependent on scarce and expensive IT resources.”

Walsh added: “It’s the platform we needed to be nimble. It has introduced a culture change in the Finance group that has rippled across the entire organisation; it enables us to drive for growth, profitability and market leadership at the pace we set without holding us back.

“That’s a mind-shift change where with our previous system we always had to apply a ‘stay out/hands-off’ approach. The business benefits from change straightaway – because they trust it. It’s noticeable that the business is trying to do a lot more things; it has freed them up to be a lot more focused on results and our customers. It allows us to compete and we’re clearly on the winning trail. And the nice side-effect: we’re running at a third of the cost of our previous ERP system.”

Wash said that NZ Post’s initiatives on digital transformation had, on the postal side, been primarily been around getting leaner to rationalise on cost, while investing heavily to ensure customer experience was not negatively impacted.

The company has made serious investment in IT to provide an agile platform that scales and evolves with at the pace demanded by the business.

“Heavy investments have gone into restructuring our organisation; our distribution centre infrastructure across the country (for the postal/parcel business); our product/services portfolio; our delivery schema’s and our online infrastructure,” Walsh said.

On the banking side, Walsh said: “We have just announced partial sell down of 47 percent of Kiwibank. The new investors will provide potential capital for growth and a new perspective at a governance level.”

Copyright © 2016 IDG Communications, Inc.

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