EADS Astrium, Europe's N°1 in the space industry
EADS Astrium is a subsidiary of the EADS Group, the leading worldwide player in the sectors of aerospace, defence and related services. EADS is organized into four divisions: Airbus, Eurocopter, Defence & Security and Astrium.
Astrium plays a crucial role in the space sector, as well as in the fields of security and defence, telecommunications and everyday services, protection of the environment and scientific and technical progress. N°1 in Europe and N°3 worldwide in the space industry, Astrium has a staff of 12,000 in Germany, France, Spain, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom.
Astrium's human resources are based in a central EADS department called EADS Personal Services (EPS). This entity manages personnel administration: payroll, time management, plus pensions and supplementary health and benefits schemes for the entire EADS Group.
The challenge: Scanning and archiving of 20,000 HR files
"With an overall objective to centralize the HR administration documents for our employees, the issue at the origin of this large-scale project was threefold. First of all, everyday management and sharing of the personal files of every employee between the central EADS department (EPS) and the various divisions, which, for the Astrium Division in France alone, represents over 20,000 files, including archives. In particular, we were using post or messengers a slow and not very productive system with limitations. Therefore, the objective was to implement a more efficient data transmission and exchange system."
Frédéric Deladerrière, HR IS Manager at EADS Astrium.
Another challenge was to find a solution that functions in a global, cross-departmental manner for the Astrium multi-site organization. In fact, "paper" personnel files are stored and archived locally at each Astrium site, which total five in France alone, making access to and viewing of files by HR personnel on other sites or at head office an extremely difficult task.
The third aspect of the problem was the IT architecture already in place at Astrium and in the EADS Group which could not be modified and into which the solution deployed had to be fully integrated for a number of reasons including security.
The UBIC project
An internal study was undertaken by Astrium to define the most appropriate solution. In 2007, Atol CD, an open source integrator with a good reputation for content management, EDM and collaborative portal solutions implementation, proposed a model based on Alfresco. Atol CD customized the technology to address the very specific requirements of EADS and its subsidiaries.
Production started in the pilot phase at Astrium France in December 2008. The solution was deployed on the five EADS Astrium sites, in addition to the two EPS sites in France, in Toulouse and Suresnes. A hundred or so users are now involved in the project.
The integration and sharing of over 600,000 pages of data
The volume of paper documents to be integrated into the solution is very high and they are spread across Astrium's 5 geographic sites in France. Each file contains an average of around thirty pages, which represents a total of over 600,000 pages stored in archives. The personnel file digitization commenced at the scheduled rate of 1,500 files a month.
Once scanned, personnel files are integrated into the UBIC system and can be accessed by both Astrium HR and EPS personnel. Document sharing zones have also been created within the system to enable Astrium users to exchange information between one another or with EPS users, in a perfectly secure, controlled manner, in line with the role of each user. The information contained in UBIC will ultimately also be accessible from the SAP administration and payroll management system.
In the near future, the project will be expanded to incorporate the Airbus, D&S and Eurocopter divisions, including approximately 50,000 additional personnel files (excluding archives) integrated into UBIC for France. The project will then be proposed in the other countries where EADS has facilities.
The benefits of the Alfresco solution customized by Atol CD
Based on Alfrescos open source architecture, UBIC is above all a flexible solution that can be tailored to user needs. Thanks to the Alfresco modules and templates supplied and pre-configured by Atol CD, the graphical interface can be easily customized to specific user requirements.
Alfresco's performance and robustness in everyday operations has been highlighted by Astrium. Another significant benefit of using Alfresco is the cost which is much lower than the implementation, management and upgrading of a proprietary solution. In addition, Alfresco enables extremely simple integrations with enterprise applications already in use at Astrium, including the SAP payroll management system.
Why was Alfresco chosen?
Alfrescos open source technology allows for full personalization, which enabled Atol CD to design and implement a solution perfectly tailored to Astrium's requirements.
The flexibility of the modules, roll-out capabilities, features provided and the ease of use of the solution were all plus points that tipped the balance in favour of the Alfresco-Atol CD duo. A winning partnership for Astrium as well as the entire EADS Group.