Merger mess with Cyberlynx plans

Only six months after being paraded as a trophy win for PeopleSoft's integrated application suite, Cyberlynx, a procurement services provider, is worried about the impact of the Oracle merger and has decided it will shop with Cognos for analytics.

"It certainly sets a mood of uncertainty and makes us carefully consider future investments," Cyberlynx general manager of technology Alan Rousselot said of the recent merger. The company manages the strategic sourcing and procurement of indirect goods and services to reduce costs for items like contract labour, printing, IT, travel, couriers, facilities management and management consulting.

Merger aside, Cyberlynx recently opted to venture away from PeopleSoft integrated applications offering.

Currently carrying contracts worth $350 million a year, Cyberlynx acts as a catalyst for more than 160 suppliers bidding for business with the likes of the Commonwealth Bank (CBA) and EDS. The procurement portal provider was on the hunt for a solution to increase the efficiency of connecting buyers with suppliers.

Rousselot said the Cognos deployment was necessary because of the CBA's need to meet its commitments to HR contracting houses and its pressing need to speed up the processes involved in the procurement of contract labour. The CBA is also one of PeopleSoft's largest Australian payroll and general ledger installations.

"There's a lot of manual timesheets, invoices, and paperwork involved in contract labour, which means things often go missing and people don't get paid. It's very convoluted and lacks overall process and procedural tightness," Rousselot said.

Cyberlynx initially tried PeopleSoft's services Procurement (sPro) system to manage clients for the CBA's contract labour.

Rousselot said he then opted to layer Cognos ReportNet over the PeopleSoft platform, with ReportNet now used to generate all management reports and make them available online to both Cyberlynx and CBA bank managers.

This involved a challenging, back-end integration with the PeopleSoft system, with a custom SQL database used to export data from sPro into the Cognos reporting engine.

However, Rousselot said despite dissatisfaction PeopleSoft for analytics, he will stay with the platform as long as it fills requirements - but that he will also continue prototyping a solution to transition travel, car hire and accommodation data from Access and Excel through SQL and into ReportNet.

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