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enterprise services bus (ESB).

It felt that SAP’s suite covered more of the bank’s requirements, he said.

‘SAP demonstrated that it would have a supply of very capable people that would be committed to the project.’ • Partner problems

ATB then selected Accenture as the system integrator and main partner for the project.

Its role was mainly project management, data migration, integration and some of the business transformation pieces, but, according to Stange, ATB’s relationship with Accenture ‘had its bumps’.

He explained: ‘Accenture didn’t have the tenacity or the courage to stick with us long-term. The whole business integration aspect that Accenture offered in the beginning didn’t necessarily fulfil itself to the level of satisfaction that we were expecting, and SAP had to step in for Accenture in a number of areas’.


ATB’s vice-president at the project outset in 2008 was Ken Casey.

(Casey left in 2012, became interim president/CEO and later board advisor at Canadian Payments Association.)

According to Casey, the organisation was looking at April 2010 for a possible first broad cut which would cover its current functionality. But, unfortunately, things didn’t go according to plan.

The implementation process at ATB kicked off with a ‘blueprint’ phase focused on requirements and design.

Its senior executive team had to recognise what they had at present and ensure that it could be replaced safely and securely, before building additional functionality, Stange said.


This ‘blueprint’ phase in total took around ten months. ‘We wanted it

all; a new loan system, deposits system,

Bank Analyzer to help us with regulatory and analytics, we wanted to facilitate payments more effectively, to replace our GL and home-grown CRM, and to integrate our channels into the core.’

However, as time went by, it became more apparent that the extent of the work involved at ATB was underestimated, and it needed to identify that the core replacement ‘wasn’t an IT project, but a business project’, said Stange.

• Project recalibration

This caused ‘frustration’ and ATB had to recalibrate the project in January 2010.

‘We found, in certain areas, a large disconnect between what the business expected out of the core and what the project was delivering,’ he said.

The recalibration phase involved ATB going back to the drawing board.

Initially the team moved to the build and design phase too quickly without the ‘proper requirements’, noted Stange, and ‘certain decisions were made that deviated requirements’.

ATB needed to review the venture, said Stange. ‘We needed to de-scope, review and amend the project plan, as well as strengthen the project management structure.’

The recalibration phase at ATB took around four months.

The implementation date was reset for April 2011, a year later than originally envisaged, and the initial budget of around $157 million had to be significantly increased.

Stange said: ‘There were cases where we were trying to design a Ferrari, and so we had to delay the project to de- scope a little functionality, which we planned to insert as enhancements as we moved forward.’

At that time, ATB also inserted more business people into Core Banking Systems Case Studies: North America

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