PricewaterhouseCoopers launches HR solution

PwC has teamed up with PeopleSoft to design a custom-made Arabic human resource mangement software solution (HRMS) for Middle East companies

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By  Barnaby Chesterman Published  March 14, 2001

PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) has highlighted the growing focus on human resource management in the Middle East by teaming up with PeopleSoft to launch HR Arabia, a localised Arabic version of PeopleSoft’s global human resource management software solution (HRMS). The launch will enable Middle East companies to take advantage of Arabised software, which includes Internet-ready technology.

“Now PeopleSoft HR Arabia gives Middle East companies the added benefits of an Arabic language version that has been exclusively developed by PwC and is specifically tailored for this region,” said Mary-Sue Rogers, PwC PeopleSoft practice leader, Europe, Middle East and Africa. PeopleSoft already has a growing list of Middle East users for its global product, including industry giants such as Unilever, Citibank, ABN AMRO, Standard Chartered, HP and Compaq.

The global product has been translated into Arabic to suit local companies, while also taking into account statutory and legal requirements in the region. With increasing moves towards deregulation, PwC felt this was the right time to introduce the HR software solution to the Middle East.

“Personnel used to be a very basic function of business operations,” said Mark Grice, principle consultant, PeopleSoft practice. “We realised over time the need to invest in people. It is not about providing software tools to a very small group of HR professionals, though. It’s about how we enable the whole organisation to take part in HR processing. We want to involve the employees,” he added.

PwC conducted an HR benchmarking survey in the Middle East and Europe last November, the results of which highlighted the pressing need to address HR issues in the region. “One of the key findings [of the survey] was that 85% of companies in the Middle East will apply new HR IT systems over the next two years to enhance the HR role and to improve the management of information and efficiency of their organisation,” said Mohammed Mubarak, advisor to PwC in the Gulf.

PeopleSoft’s product is an industry leader with seven out of the top ten Fortune 500 companies using it, according to Denis Boulanger, director, alliance and sales development for PeopleSoft. He believes that one of its core competencies is that HR Arabia is Internet-enabled, allowing people to access it from anywhere in the world.

PwC and PeopleSoft are also keen to build strong and lasting ties with their customers, and are opening a support centre in Abu Dhabi to bring them closer to clients. “We will have an Arab language support capability here in the Middle East so the product will be supported from here, by us,” said Stephan Dando, director of management consulting services for PwC.

“We want to be a unique strategic partner to our customers,” added Boulanger.

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