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Case Study – Migration from

Blackline to Oracle Account


Reconciliation Cloud

Tuesday, Oct 23, 3:00 p.m. - 3:45 p.m.


The Exchange @ Moscone South - Collective
Learning Room – Booth 2307
Case Study -
Migration from Blackline to Oracle Account Reconciliation Cloud
Tribune's successful journey of migrating a highly complex Transaction Matching & period-end
Reconciliation solution from Blackline to Oracle ARCS

Presenters
Migration from Blackline to Oracle Account Reconciliation Cloud
Kevin Kleiner – Sr. Director, Financial Accounting, Tribune Publishing
Joe Guillotte – Director, Financial Accounting, Tribune Publishing
Ashwin Tandon – Principal Consultant, Infosys
Rahul Bansal – Technology Lead, Infosys
Tim Gaumont – Director, Product Management, Oracle
Quick Survey to get to know the audience

• Please raise your hand to show…

• Who is using Blackline today?

• If you are using Blackline, are you using Transaction Matching in Blackline?

• Which ERP(s) are you using today?


– Oracle?
– SAP?
– Other not Oracle or SAP?
Customer Profile - Tribune Publishing
Tribune Publishing is National Newspaper Publisher and Online Content Provider – 92
Pulitzer Prizes
10 Major Newspapers – Including the Chicago Tribune, New York Daily News, Baltimore Sun, Sun Sentinel,
Orlando Sentinel, Hartford Courant, Allentown, Newport News, Virginian Pilot

FY 2017 Gross
Revenue Employees
$1.5 billion 5,600
Our Current Financial systems PeopleSoft ERP, Microsoft AX, Blackline

PeopleSoft/ Oracle Fusions • Consistent ERP platform for


Cloud Journey AX CLOUD GL, AP, AR and Fixed Assets.
- Major Shift to • Streamline and standardize
CLOUD processes
• Eliminate customization
Blackline ARCS
challenges.
Tribune Publishing’s Objectives

Tribune Publishing’s As-is Tribune Publishing


Processes objectives

• Blackline used for reconciliation and TM


• Complex transaction matching setup Have best in class Ability to perform
with 15+ bank Sources and over 14,000 close and complex
reconciliation transaction
transactions per reconciliation
solution with matching across
• 2,400 reconciliations per period reduced TCO 20+ data sources
• Limited flexibility in assigning due dates
• Need for effective status tracking and
Enable business UI affinity and
enhanced employee performance
for a faster and single platform
monitoring improved close with enhanced
• Complex data integration setup cycle monitoring and
analytics
ARCS Implementation Project Snapshot

Tribune Publishing Team


Reconciliation system Project duration
(Champions who made it possible) - Kevin
migration from Blackline - 6 Months with Kleiner,
to ARCS Feb 2018 Go-Live Joe Guillotte,
Diem Tran

Partnerships Infosys
(Implementation partner)
INFOSYS ORACLE
End to End Program Involvement of ARCS
Management, Design &
Build Migration, Testing,
product development
leadership for product
Peak
team size - 4
User Training and Go- issues and
LIVE enhancements

Onsite-
offshore
ratio - 35 : 65
Decision – Why did we choose to move from Blackline to Oracle ARCS

1 Ease of use and intuitive user interface

2 Reporting & rules engine

3 TCO (License + Implementation fees)

4 Transaction matching

5 Integration (Seamless integration with Oracle fusion cloud)

More Comprehensive  Less Comprehensive


Our Key Wins
• Enhanced data analytics and improved monitoring (Biggest benefits over Blackline)
– Data load and usability of the application can go simultaneously, ensuring continuous process – our biggest reason for winning
– Rich and intuitive reporting capabilities including in-transit report for close process
– Out of the box dashboards with customization and transaction filtering capabilities

• Use of Custom attributes to capture information specific to


our business to enable automated reconciliations
– About 75-80% transactions are auto-matched, ensuring desired functionality of the
– application – another key reason for winning
– High-speed auto-match process needs no manual intervention
– We created custom attributes where certain calculation criteria were used like BU, Bank Account
– number on one side of matching as against to Entity and Custom reference number on other side.

• Flexibility to assign due dates based on risk ratings (Our Favorite !!!)
– Ability to manage employee’s time better
– Enhanced control to manage close cycle

• Operational efficiencies by reducing the number of manual


• matching of transactions through efficient match processes
– Ability to match data from multiple sources without cloning
– Ability to define various match processes in a single reconciliation

• More scalable solution to handle additional interfaces and


• reconciliations/transactions without additional cost
Infosys Blackline to ARCS Reconciliation Compliance migration
Factors Blackline to ARCS Methodology
Profiles Conversion In Blackline, all the accounts getting reconciled based on different ERP segments would be used as is in ARCS.
New segments can also be introduced and existing segments from blackline can be removed based on
requirements and the new ERP configuration, if any.

Mappings Mappings for loading data would be created automatically using the profiles template as given.

Historical Reconciliations Historical reconciliations from Blackline would be migrated to ARCS using excel templates and creating as-is
reconciliations from blackline

Historical Reconciliations – Historical data from blackline recons would be migrated using pre-mapped balances functionality of ARCS where a
Data reconciliation would have Source System Balance (General Ledger) and/or Subledger Balance depending on the
format of the account profile.

Historical Reconciliations - Historical transactions from blackline recons would be migrated using excel templates for loading transactions into
Transactions reconciliations month-wise into all the existing historical reconciliations. We would also enable special configuration
to auto-submit and auto-approve this reconciliations if the unexplained difference or unexplained balance is zero.

Approval Workflow For approval workflow to migrate from Blackline to ARCS, preparer and approvers from Blackline would be
converted to preparers and reviewers in ARCS as is. Additionally, more levels of approvers (reviewers in ARCS)
can be added.
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Infosys Blackline to ARCS Transaction Matching migration 0

Factors Blackline to ARCS Methodology


Multiple Data Sources In Blackline, multiple data sources if needed were cloned to configured. To achieve the same in ARCS, we have multiple data
sources configured in single reconciliation type and in turn no cloning is needed so that data redundancy is eliminated.

Match Process ARCS has the capability to configure multiple match processes in a single reconciliation type. This will help to define matching
between any two data sources in a single recon type resulting in lesser configuration of matching rules

Matching Rules In a single match process, we define multiple rules where different attributes (balancing attribute, accounting date, Reference
numbers etc.) are used to match transactions. These can be 1-1, 1-Many, Many-1 and Many-Many.

Historical In-Transit transactions While migrating from Blackline to ARCS, the existing unmatched transactions can be imported as is into ARCS with little
formatting to ensure in-transit matching of the same with future transactions being posted in next month financial cycle.

Filtering and Custom Attributes In Blackline, filters are applied over data and then matching rules are defined over it. If the same data is to be matched against
a different data source, you have to clone the source. To overcome this in ARCS, we use custom calculated attributes which
are derived using specific conditions and then matching rules are defined on a broader category rather than on filtered data in
Blackline. This helps in removing the effort to clone the data for matching again.

The Infosys Blackline to ARCS Framework is the first self deployable ARCS solution to be published on Oracle Cloud Market
Place . You can download the artifacts at
https://cloudmarketplace.oracle.com/marketplace/en_US/listing/43397817
ARCS Solution Components

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Data Flow Diagram
Risk Ratings
• How have you defined your risk ratings across your accounts?

• At Tribune, accounts are classified as Key and Non-Key which are translated to High Risk and Medium Risk
accounts and are having different due dates. Other companies using ARCS have 3 or 4 or more levels of risk
rating categories assigned.

• Setting different due dates allows preparers to concentrate on high risk accounts first and complete their
reconciliation process in a risk averse & streamlined manner.

• The key win here over other competitors in reconciliation space is that Administrators or Automated process can
update the due dates as needed in the system for any specific account without affecting the underlying structure
of reconciliation. Changes can be made for only current month or for all the future months as required by
business.
Match Processes (Combination of Matching Rules)
• How do you currently configure your matching processes?

• At Tribune, we have many match passes happening, which the Cash being a 4-way reconciliation.

• Examples of various styles of reconciliations:

– 2-way: GL <-> Bank Statements


– 3-way: GL <-> Credit Card Processor <-> Bank Statements
– 4-way: GL <-> A/R (or Point of Sale) <-> Credit Card Processor <-> Bank Statements

• Tribune defines multiple match processes like GL vs AR AMEX Credit Card, AR AMEX Credit Card vs AMEX
Processor, AMEX Processor vs Bank, and even sometimes bypass middle Data Sources and match GL vs Bank in a
single Match Type – you can define as many Match Processes as needed.
Auto-Reconciliation Rules
• How do you currently auto-reconcile your accounts?

• At Tribune, we have a three types of inbuilt auto reconciliations rules are configured.

– Balance match with tolerance.


– Balance is zero and no activity.
– Balance is zero

• Also Tribune wanted to customize reconciliations to auto-close based on certain parameters and hence
configured custom rules for each format. Some of them are below.

– GL Balance is blank and SL balance is 0, GL is blank and SL is blank or GL is 0 and SL is blank.


– Copy transactions from prior period if certain conditions are met.
In-Transit Transactions

• How do you analyze your in-transit matched or unmatched transactions?

• In ARCS you can have your transactions getting loaded continuously without having to stop them to analyze your
in-transit transactions whether matched or unmatched. In Blackline ,Tribune had to stop loading transactional
data into their transaction matching solution to analyze the in-transits after month end and had to start loading
them again only after they had completed their month end matching process.

• With ARCS solution they did not have to go through the same painful and delaying process again as ARCS has
seeded out of the box capability to match your in-transit transactions and show them on the reconciliation
dashboard for easy analysis and reporting.
Matching Rules

• How have you defined your matching rules for your transaction matching?

• Depending on the nature of data sources and respective transactions to be matched; we configured various
types of matching rules like:

– 1-1
– 1-Many
– Many-1
– Many-Many

• Each rule has its own significance and incorporates the filtering mechanism achieved using custom attributes so
that we do not have to write separate matching rules for separate business units
Tribune Publishing Company – Next Steps

• Utilize management dashboards for quick visibility.


• Develop custom reports for management decisions.
• Implement Revenue Recognition.
• Enhance current processes to take further advantage of the cloud.
• Continued support from Oracle development, Tim has been very supportive of our needs
and moving the ARCS platform forward.
Solution Snapshots and Infosys Credentials

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Solution Dashboards, Data Sources Match Processes and Custom Attributes

Below are snapshots from our solution for ARCS Transaction Matching at Tribune Publishing showcasing Reconciliation Dashboards,
Match Processes and Custom Attributes.

Reconciliation Overview (Dashboard)


Data Sources and Match Processes
Custom Attribute Example
File Format / Conversion and Mappings
• During our implementation, ARCS had not rolled out Data Management functionality with TM and hence it was a challenge for us to
transform all the files coming from different data sources in below formats into .csv.

• To change above formats and convert / map them to ARCS specific and readable .csv formats MuleSoft tool was used and .bai to .csv
converter was developed in-house by Infosys
• This helped us in delivering the ARCS TM solution in desired, effective and quick manner
Quick Glance – Infosys EPM practice

$40 M 475+ 20% 40% 50+ 97% 30%


EPM Revenue EPM FTE Cross skilled Certified Clients Client Retention Functional consultants

EPM Global Presence


90+
Successfully
Active
13+
Industry
4%
ROW
Client Relationships
Executed Projects Domain Expertise

Planning
Consolidation & reporting
4 out oftop15
Finance Institute
7 out oftop10
Manufacturing
Financial Services
37% 47%
4 out oftop 10 Automotive OEM Americas APAC
Consulting Hi-Tech Companies CPG, Apparels
Support 4 out oftop10 Retail, Logistics
Financial Transformation
3 out oftop10
Global Telcos
Apparel Brands
4 out oftop 5 Energy, Communications & 12%
Platform & operations CPG Companies Services EMEA
Cloud adoption Healthcare and Life Sciences

Oracle EPM (On Premise) Oracle EPM(Cloud)


400+ 75+
Level of Partnership Service Offerings
Diamond Partner, Global System Integrator and Reseller Oracle Diamond Partner Cloud Elite, Global System
Integrator and Reseller
Financial Transformations, Upgrades, Implementation, Cloud Advisory Workshops, Cloud Migration, EPM
# Consultants
Support, Cloud migration, Performance tuning, Cloud Lite, Cloud Consulting, Cloud Integrations
Health-check

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Infosys Credentials in Reconciliations space - Summary
• 2 Infosys ARCS case studies were presented at Oracle Open World 2017
– Excel based Reconciliations to cloud with ARCS in 11 weeks for a Semiconductor US major
– Migration from Blackline to ARCS for a US Publishing house
• First Oracle partner to have an ARCS based solution published on Oracle cloud
marketplace.(https://cloudmarketplace.oracle.com/marketplace/en_US/listing/43397817)
• Performed a 4 week transaction matching proof of concept for a ecommerce company to load 2 million transactions from
two sources and match them based on rules provided. ( Loading and Matching of 2 million transactions was completed in
less than 25 minutes in ARCS)
• Infosys was involved in multiple year roll out of one of the largest ARM (On premise Account recon Manager)
implementations . The manufacturing client was part of the Oracle early adopter program and Infosys leverages all the
expertise and best practices from that implementation to implement best in class reconciliation solution
– The time, effort and learnings of the ARM implementation are equivalent to several ARM implementations
• Infosys has a reconciliation COE which includes process consultants with expertise in reconciliation domain and support
clients with their AR and AP back office operations.
• Strong alliance and partnership with Oracle ARCS product development team for creating solutions , future road mapping
and beta testing of new features
• Two ongoing implementations for ARCS (Recon Compliance and Transaction Matching)
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Q&A
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