EBS

The challenge

As one of the country's leading building societies, EBS has seen a number of very busy years.

It's hardly surprising, given the fact that Ireland has been in the midst of a long and sustained property boom. While taking care of its member's requirements is the core of EBS's business, taking care of its staff is equally important. Without an efficient and motivated workforce, the organisation cannot continue to grow. Managing its Human Resources function is a complex task and, according to Human Resources Manager Sean McGrath, EBS has long recognised the need to introduce an effective IT system to manage its disparate HR needs.

"We had been looking at introducing a system for some time, over a period going back five to ten years. For one reason or other, it never materialised", he said.

Instead, EBS made do with what McGrath referred to as a "concoction" of solutions.

"We were using a combination of spreadsheets and databases and knew that it wouldn't suffice for the long term, particularly if we wanted to have a single view of the employee," he explained.

Back in 2000, EBS undertook a strategic review and developed an action plan which looked ahead at improvements it could make in its organisation over the next five years.

"We were very conscious of the fact that we are a people-centred organisation and we wanted to remain that way. To do that, you had to have a tool that helped you effectively manage these people," said McGrath.

The solution

EBS looked long and hard for a potential solutions provider in 2002 / 2003, but many of the big names in the IT industry were found wanting.

"We wanted something that offered us complete control and could be developed along the lines of in-house requirements. We weren't looking for an out-of-the-box, one-size-fits-all solution," McGrath explained.

It was with this in mind that EBS eventually found what it was looking for with Strandum. "We were really impressed with their enthusiasm and they proved to be innovative, creative, and a genuine business partner", he said. Following the EBS requirement, Strandum developed a total HR solution. Every piece of relevant employee data could be stored, accessed and analysed on one system. The new solution was designed to cater for every employee interaction, from initial interview to retirement, all were catered for, coupled with interfaces to payroll throughout. The solution continues to evolve, with new modules catering for things such as Flex Benefits and Exit Management steadily being added.

The benefits

"What we've seen is a huge transformation in how the HR department can do their job. This gives us real time information on every employee and means that we can undertake projects that were never possible under the old regime," said McGrath.

The Strandum solution enables EBS to effectively segment their staff, and offer them personal tailored benefits and solutions to suit their individual needs. One example of the new flexibility is in the area of annual holiday -- staff can buy or sell holidays outside of their statutory requirements. This particularly suits the staff member who may wish to spend more time at home when their children are on holidays from school, etc.

"The HR team really enjoy designing these life-style choices for the staff and the system has allowed us to do exactly that," explained McGrath.

"It generates substantial efficiencies for our department. We now have up-to-date employee information at the touch of a button. We're very, very happy with Strandum. They've been real partners and they've been willing to go the extra yard for us. I think our users will see the benefits for a long time to come,"
said McGrath.

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EBS is a mutual building Society, established and run on behalf of its members.
 

Client Testimonial


"We’re very, very happy with Strandum. They’ve been real partners and they’ve been willing to go the extra yard for us. I think our users will see the benefits for a long time to come,”



Sean McGrath, Human Resources Manager, EBS Building Society

 

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