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UNIT4 underpins service reform at 90 per cent of Ireland’s local government authorities

Dublin, Republic of Ireland & Utrecht, Netherlands, 24 September, 2014 – UNIT4, the global leader in software that enables business change, today announced an agreement under a current contract with the Local Government Management Agency (LGMA) to upgrade the UNIT4 Agresso Local Government ERP Platform at 27 local government organizations in the Republic of Ireland. This means that 90 per cent of the country’s local government bodies will benefit from the latest version of Agresso, to help them adapt to huge change in the sector and deliver on Ireland’s national public sector reform and procurement agendas.

The LGMA, which is a state agency of the Department of Environment, Community and Local Government, was established to provide a range of services to the local government sector. In light of funding cuts it undertook a Business Process Improvement (BPI) exercise to identify efficiencies that will enable the sector to do more with less; UNIT4 Finance and Procurement will be configured to underpin these improvements.

“The councils have been successfully using Agresso since 1999,” said Brendan Nicholson, Senior Consultant at the LGMA. “The latest version is designed with client engagement and service delivery in mind and will allow us to configure it for our BPI programme requirements, and to adapt to longer-term change we are experiencing here in Ireland, including the potential for shared services. Additionally new technological advancements like mobile working, self-service and workflow will enable the councils to provide better services to its employees and citizens.”

The implementation begins in September 2014 at a pilot site, next will be a validation site and then the remaining 25 councils will be rolled out using a rapid ‘out-of-the-box’ implementation methodology.

“The technology platform will also help foster a culture of greater financial awareness with real-time budget checking, Key Performance Indicators [KPIs], dashboards and commitment accounting with workflow approvals controlling the movement of money,” added Nicholson.

UNIT4 Income Manager will provide the public with a convenient and efficient means to pay the councils for services via the internet. Self-service will also reduce administration and allow employees to access, via any web-enabled device, accurate information at a time convenient to them. The councils and the sector will benefit from more timely information to facilitate better decision making and accurate reports for central Government. 

UNIT4 Procurement will help deliver savings by guiding employees through workflow aligned to Ireland’s National Procurement Agenda, including aggregated tenders to achieve value for money on all expenditure.

“The LGMA has led from the front to orchestrate a project that will deliver considerable efficiencies so that councils can deliver more with less,” said Anwen Robinson, Managing Director of UNIT4 Business Software Ltd for the UK and Ireland. “That 90 per cent of Ireland’s councils are looking to extend a 15 year relationship with UNIT4 speaks volumes about their faith in our technology and its ability to help them navigate challenging times in Irish local government.”

In the future, as per the National Public Sector Reform Agenda set out by central Government in Ireland, the LGMA are keen to exploit UNIT4 Agresso’s flexibility to deliver further efficiencies by using it to enable shared services between the councils.

“There has been a committed partnership between the LGMA and the UNIT4 team over the last few years. A strong working relationship has enabled the consultants on the ground to really understand the organizations, and how local authorities’ business requirements are continually evolving and changing,” said Nicholson at the LGMA.

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