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Oracle Cloud Implementation for the Leader in Ocean Bottom Seismic Technology

Fairfield Nodal


MultiCloud Acceleration Solution


Oracle Enterprise Modernization



Business Challenges

FairfieldNodal is a privately held 30-year-old company with worldwide operations and expertise in nodal technology. They are the acknowledged leader in ocean bottom seismic (OBS) technology—developing, manufacturing, and deploying exclusive, nodal data-acquisition systems serving customers such as BP Amoco and Shell Oil. With this proprietary technology, FairfieldNodal have also built and licensed a vast, multi-client library of data for the Gulf of Mexico and the Permian Basin, further helping their customers overcome economic challenges. The oil industry experienced a significant downturn which began in 2014.

As the oil prices plummeted, the instability in the global market posed a serious threat to the survival of companies, resulting in reduced cash flows and major layoffs, among other hardships. As companies prepared to tide over the oil crisis, the focus was shifting toward improving efficiencies and maintaining competitiveness through customer focused, value-driven solutions. Finding a way through uncertainties in the volatile market looked difficult as outdated business systems could not keep up with the growing demand for an agile, scalable, and secure enterprise.

Dealing with operational challenges in the wake of the downturn necessitated the implementation of innovative technology that not only aligned with business objectives but also became the key enabler of a company’s success in an increasingly unstable market. Traditional business methods had to be replaced with technology-enabled business operations to accelerate the transition to a future-ready digital enterprise, better equipped to navigate the complexities of the oil industry landscape.

In a two-year period, the downturn had a deep impact on FairfieldNodal’s revenue and employee headcount. Major bottlenecks on the road to recovery were optimizing business processes and bringing in more visibility into the business operations. The company was ready to explore a sustainable, technology-driven road map, and overcome the biggest barriers to growth and profitability.

FairfieldNodal’s significant business challenges included:

  • Only 20% of the sales team was using SFDC previously and they had incomplete sales forecast
  • They had no Budget and Planning system—this was done manually in Excel
  • Their HR system was extremely limited in functionality
  • They had a 30-year-old MAPICS Green Screen system that had not been updated for a very long time

Journey to the Cloud

Now that they were looking to streamline existing business processes, they decided to evaluate their entire ERP system which was running primarily on an older Tier 2 Infor MAPICS technology. Oracle now had an integrated cloud technology that would allow FairfieldNodal a Tier 1 ERP system without the need to purchase, manage, and support the underlying infrastructure typically needed for a on-premise system.

Challenges before implementation included:

  • Inflexible and unsupported financial system with multiple databases
  • Oversimplified accounting structures and lack of reporting capabilities
  • Still needed to perform manual processes with a Tier 2 ERP system
  • Outdated MAPICS system

The Success Story Begins

In June 2016, FairfieldNodal and Hitachi Consulting worked together to implement an Oracle SaaS Cloud solution to optimize current operations and increase profitability. With Oracle Cloud, the company had the tools to more effectively manage and analyze their business—sales forecasting, planning and budgeting, and demand planning.

Leveraging Hitachi Consulting’s experience, the company started mapping their path to the cloud with an on-site engagement team driving project management, design, and client relationship; and, an offshore team driving application configuration and integration development. With the implementation of Oracle Cloud ERP, the company can now do “more with less.”

Deployment 1:
Successfully implemented Phase 1 that went live in October 2016 in 16 weeks, encompassing Oracle’s Cloud Financials, Projects (PPM), Core HCM, CX, and Learn.

Deployment 2:
Phase 2 went live in April 2017 in less than 24 weeks with Oracle Cloud Supply Chain modules encompassing Manufacturing, Inventory, Planning Central (VCP), Order Management, Procurement, Time and Labor, and Absence Management.

Deployment 3:
Preparing to implement Planning & Budgeting (PBCS), and remaining Human Capital Management (HCM) modules encompassing Talent Management, On-Boarding, Recruiting, and Employee Self-Service.

Oracle Cloud Drives Business Transformation

FairfieldNodal is an autonomous full-service geophysical company that specializes in reliable seismic acquisition and processing, including the design and manufacture of seismic acquisition systems, helping explorationists and asset teams worldwide contend with environmentally challenging marine and onshore environments—at a significantly lower total cost of ownership. Their technology dramatically simplifies the logistics of deployment and data acquisition.

Hitachi Consulting delivered game-changing business benefits with an Oracle SaaS Cloud solution:

  • Improved sales forecasting and customer service via CX
  • Single source of financial truth, globally
  • Operational and Financial reporting using modern tools
  • Modern user experience to match staff expectations
  • Foundation for continued automation and consolidation of shared services operation
  • Minimal back-office IT staff required to “keep the lights on”

When the company faced a survival crisis during the oil industry downturn, Hitachi Consulting set out a strong case for a SaaS-based Oracle Cloud implementation, successfully providing FairfieldNodal with rapid time to value and accelerating their digital transformation journey to Oracle Cloud.

Business Value

  • Closing books at ME or QE went from 15 days to 2 days
  • 33% reduction in Accounting and IT staff—they do not plan to hire additional staff in 2017 and 2018 and their business rebound due to the increased efficiencies they have been able to achieve with Oracle Cloud
  • Oracle Sales Cloud will cost 15% less to run annually as compared to their legacy mainframe MAPICS applications
  • They will increase automation across their business, including adding functionality for many tasks that were performed manually. This includes Learn, Talent Acquisition, Budget and Planning, and CRM
  • Elimination of inefficiencies FairfieldNodal uses emails for approvals today in purchasing or phone calls
  • Manual elimination—expense reports were written by hand or tracked in Excel
  • Elimination of data maintenance in Excel and paper circulation on the shop floor
  • Consolidation of multiple legacy systems—eliminating manual efforts and reducing costs to support applications
  • Better reporting capabilities and visibility to grow their business
  • Ease of access to data for Executive Members

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