With growth over four years from 500 to 1900 employees globally, IT software company SolarWinds was finding it hard to maintain and discover one version of the truth with existing systems. SolarWinds selected Fairsail [now Sage People] over Workday because of its scalable, high value system. SolarWinds’ decision was based on their customer experience too: they felt most comfortable with Fairsail’s directly-managed deployment team rather than a third party.
Speaker: Jen Alessandra, Senior Vice President, Human Resources
SolarWinds is an IT management software company and and we specialise in network performance management, systems management, databases… anything that monitors how a system or network is doing and helps IT professionals do their jobs better. I’ve been with the company for almost four years and during that time we’ve gone from about $150 million in revenue to over $500 million in revenue. And we’ve gone from 500 employees to almost 1900 employees.
End of month we would want a total headcount report for every country that we had in the world, and I remember my first month at SolarWinds it took five days to get that data! And not five days of people wasting time, people really trying hard to find that source of truth!
We were definitely concerned with having a solution that was secure and that would be able to meet… where we had countries that had more stringent requirements from a reporting perspective. So we want our HRMS solution to reflect who we are as a company and who we want to be. It should be reflective of our culture and nature.
The other thing we were looking for was integration. So how would it integrate with existing systems and how could it accommodate things that we knew would happen in our business. Like bringing on a number of employees through acquisition overnight and needing to have them on board day one.
When we got to the finalists it was actually Fairsail [now Sage People] and Workday. The trade-off that we were looking at making was first on cost: Fairsail was much more cost competitive not only when it comes to the regular cost but also the implementation cost. And the second piece was: how were we going to be viewed as a customer of the company? And with Fairsail, what we found was the team was very attentive and very interested in making sure we had a great experience as we were selecting and deploying the software.
Through Workday we would have… because of our size at the time… I don’t know what the metric is now but they go through a third party to do implementation, so we were much more comfortable with having the direct relationship with Fairsail. When we implemented it took less than 90 days. We got time back because there was a way for employees and managers to have access to information that previously they had to ask a human for. Or to go through some manual process to get. So the HR team and the payroll team got a good portion of time back, as well as employees, because they knew what the single source was to find what they needed.
So over the time that we grew the company from 500 employees to 1900 employees, the department that’s really responsible for the work that was and is being automated has only increased 30% instead of 400%. So that in itself has been a huge gain for us. We have also been very comforted that we have a single source of truth for data, and our data integrity process is so much stronger now.
A lot of the benefits of Fairsail to our managers and executive team has been visibility. So that’s exactly what we found when we were looking at our turnover statistics. Before it would be so arduous to even get those statistics that we ran it every few months or maybe once every six months, or when somebody remembered it. And after we implemented Fairsail we were able to run it on a routine basis and really look at the trends we were seeing.
So I do believe that Fairsail again has the capability to scale and change and grow with us as a business. It’s built on the force.com platform which is really important to us.
The things that you get with Fairsail are predictability, you get scalability on a global perspective, or from a number of employees perspective, and you get a cost that’s really competitive, where you’re not weighted down with the other things that you need to do in the department. It’s been a great, great experience.