IBA Group Implements Currency Redenomination Projects
Since July 1, 2016, the National Bank of the Republic of Belarus has adopted a new Belarusian currency that replaced the old banknotes. The currency redenomination cut four zeros off the Belarusian ruble. Old and new banknotes are in parallel circulation until the end of 2016 and the prices in both currencies should be available for the customers. From the start of 2017, people will have to exchange their old notes for the new versions.
However, the switchover has caused a few concerns. The media warned about possible failures in the operation of ATMs and payments using internet banking, mobile internet banking, and bank plastic cards. The transition to the new Belarusian currency in automated financial systems, including the systems of accounting, payment, and control involved complex processes associated with major reconfiguration of the software. It was also needed to keep records and financial statements in both non-denominated rubles (BYR) and new rubles (BYN) in enterprise automated systems.
Belarusian Railway, Gazprom Transgaz Belarus, and Gomelenergo started to plan the projects on data conversion for their information and management systems in advance.
Using the facilities of the IBA Data Center, IBA Group simulated the situation and developed possible scenarios in order to avoid contingencies. IBA Group conducted test runs of data conversion followed by the testing of all business processes.
For Gazprom Transgaz Belarus and Belarusian Railway, IBA Group implemented the end-to-end solutions. For Gomelenergo, IBA Group provided expert support throughout the project.
IBA Group implemented the conversion of data in customer information systems according to the methodology of transition to the euro recommended by SAP SE. The redenomination was successfully completed for the ERP and BI systems in line with the project schedules. As IBA Group was working on weekends, the total time of unavailability of the productive systems was from one to two days.
The main requirement for the redenomination project was to close the accounting period before the redenomination. IBA made it possible for the operations in the transition period to use both BYR and BYN currencies, including online banking and salary transfers. IBA created a backup of the productive system with historical data to generate reports in old Belarusian rubles for the first half of the year. Currently, IBA Group is conducting a reconciliation of reporting and correction of data associated with the conversion and rounding.
The project scope includes the following.
- A joint team of 50 consultants and developers was created to implement the redenomination project for the SAP systems.
- The number of software objects affected by the redenomination for all the customers amounts to more than a 1,000
- The redenomination impacted dozens of customer subsystems, each of them covering hundreds of business processes
- The project lasted six months.
Igor Otliga, Head of IT Department at Belarusian Railway, comments: “It was very important to implement the all-round redenomination project for the Unified Finance and Resource Management System within the terms established by the Belarusian legislation. IBA Group was selected to perform this work, as the company has an in-depth SAP expertise. I believe that together we have successfully met the challenges”.
Olesya Shelashen, Deputy Chief Accountant, Head of the functional group on accounting at Gazprom Transgaz Belarus, says: “The introduction of the redenomination in SAP systems tested the teams’ ability to make deliberate decisions while staying creative. The most difficult part was not even a procedure of data conversion but bringing the round-off errors in line with the Belarusian law. IBA coped with both challenging tasks successfully”.