Loomis Suomi Oy is part of an international listed company that is headquartered in Sweden and specialises in the handling and transportation of cash. The company was looking for a modern financial management system that would stand the test of time and act as a good platform for further development.
Their previous financial management solution had been in use since the early 2000s and could no longer meet modern developmental requirements. It’s not easy to choose a new system in an international organisation, as you need to strike a balance between standardisation within the group and each regional unit’s independent views on which system is best for them.
System replacement considered for a long time
Loomis Suomi Oy’s CFO, Tuomas Sainio, witnessed the preparations for the system project back at the beginning of the 2010s, when he was still the company’s chief accountant. Sainio held other positions in between, before returning to Loomis Suomi Oy as CFO in 2016. At the same time, he actively began promoting the renewal of the financial management system.
“The main shortcomings of the old solution related to its lack of flexibility and the difficulties in further developing it. A lot of things had to be done manually, and information did not automatically flow between production and financial management. It was also practically impossible to add new features,” he continues.
“As the old system was hopelessly outdated, replacement was the only option. On the other hand, it was still functional enough to postpone the renewal year after year,” says Sainio.
Dynamics 365 Finance & Operations best met the needs of service sales
The Finnish regional company was allowed to choose its own financial management system. At this stage, there were several alternatives on the table, of which Tuomas Sainio preferred Microsoft Dynamics 365 Finance & Operations.
“I’d had good experiences with the Microsoft Dynamics product family in my previous positions. Other factors in favour of Dynamics 365 Finance & Operations included its suitability in meeting the service business’s requirements, excellent expandability, and the option to introduce our desired features in a suitable order. I also felt that the user groups would find it relatively easy to learn how to use Microsoft products.”
“We felt that Dynamics 365 Finance & Operations was the right solution for us, as it was able to meet our immediate needs and also provided a platform for further development,” he continues.
Digia was selected as the supplier on the basis of its expertise and reliability
As Sainio considered the technical characteristics of modern IT systems to be roughly on par with each other, project planning focused on the supplier and their understanding of the company’s business and their vision for the eventual implementation.
“In the end, Digia was an easy choice to supply the system. They have been actively in contact with us over the years, which means they are very well acquainted with our needs and background. There was also good personal chemistry between our people and theirs, and they had the same goals for the project as us,” says Sainio.
Delivery goes as expected
The delivery of Loomis Suomi Oy’s Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations system was well planned and the agreed schedules were largely met. Although there were a few delays, they were either due to expected or changing circumstances.
“The delivery was projectified effectively and was forecast to last just under a year – and it did,” says Sainio.
“The biggest challenge turned out to be the integration of one of our operative systems into D365.But this was no surprise either, and we were prepared for it. Digia’s approach was extremely solution-oriented,” says Sainio.
Final result meets expectations
The solution proved to be exactly what it was supposed to be, and met Loomis Suomi Oy’s expectations perfectly. The amount of manual labour decreased significantly, and business data could be extracted from the system in a collated and well-analysed format. The automation of manual operations also minimised the number of human errors. The new solution also provides more flexible opportunities for processing large volumes of data in big batches. The previous solution was not capable of this.
“The system project was very well prepared and projectified, which resulted in very few surprises along the way. The system had largely been introduced by April 2019 and our initial experiences have been positive. Some minor adjustments had to be made afterwards, and the integration of one operative system is still ongoing, but neither of these have come as a surprise,” says Sainio.
“Digia’s approach has been outstanding. Agreements have been adhered to, and when problems arose they were able to focus on finding a solution through dialogue.”
Closer cooperation between Digia and Microsoft
Loomis Suomi Oy intends to continue its cooperation with Digia.
“One important reason why we chose Dynamics 365 Finance & Operations as our new system was its expandability. These are the possibilities we’re considering at the moment. We’ve discussed Dynamics 365 Field Services as a fieldwork ERP as well as a solution for warehouse management. Our experiences of Digia have all been excellent, so we’ll definitely be continuing our cooperation with them,” says Sainio.
Other regional companies in the international organisation have also shown interest in Finland’s system project.
“The UK unit is currently considering whether to update their financial management system, and Dynamics 365 Finance & Operations is also an option there. I’ve been involved in that working group myself, sharing our experiences and opinions of the system,” says Sainio.