CASE STUDY:  Elizabeth Arden

KEY BENEFITS

  • Ability to manage HR/payroll processes from anywhere via the Internet
  • HR/payroll system and employee database secured in a state-of-the-art data center
  • World-class disaster recovery and business continuity protection

NUMBER OF EMPLOYEES

  • 1,000

COMPANY PROFILE

Elizabeth Arden is a global beauty products company with an extensive portfolio of prestige beauty brands sold in more than 100 countries. The company's brand portfolio includes Elizabeth Arden skincare, color, and fragrance products, PREVAGE® anti-aging formulas, the celebrity fragrance brands of Britney Spears, Elizabeth Taylor, Mariah Carey, Taylor Swift, and Usher; the designer fragrance brands of Juicy Couture, Alberta Ferretti, Alfred Sung, Badgley Mischka, Bob Mackie, Geoffrey Beene, Halston, John Varvatos, Kate Spade, Lucky Brand, and Rocawear; and the lifestyle fragrance brands Curve, Giorgio Beverly Hills, and PS Fine Cologne.

THE CHALLENGES

In October 2005, Elizabeth Arden’s headquarters in Miami, Florida was hit by Hurricane Wilma, leaving the area incapacitated, roads littered with debris, and powerlines down. The region’s lack of electricity and potable water forced the office to close.

THE SOLUTION

Because Elizabeth Arden could securely log into UltiPro from a Web browser, members of the company’s employee management and payroll teams were able to easily manage HR and payroll processes off-site—enabling wages to be paid without disruption and providing staff members emergency contact information for communicating with employees.

Even though its headquarters was without power for eight days, the company never missed a payroll or had any employee database issues. Service was never interrupted because the UltiPro solution is housed off-site in Ultimate Software’s hardened data center where essential information is protected from fires, natural disasters, power outages, sabotage, or theft.

With Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), employee records are protected by the latest advances in security, which include several layers of built-in application and database protection. Documents are backed up regularly and frequently checked for viruses using secure network connections to ensure the privacy and integrity of the data.

“During a weeklong power outage, my team could still access our HR/payroll over the Internet, so we had no downtime with our human resources and payroll solution. We are very impressed with Ultimate Software’s capabilities,” said Louis Nault, director of finance for Elizabeth Arden.

When organizations make the transition to UltiPro’s cloud platform they find they have far greater control over processes, more comprehensive functionality, and real-time access to the most current employee data and trends via the Web.

For companies like Elizabeth Arden that switch from an on-site, in-house solution to SaaS delivery, the benefits can be even greater. Not only do they enjoy greater functionality and improved reporting opportunities, they are relieved of the burden of supporting and maintaining an HCM system. Plus, with UltiPro’s SaaS model, these companies have the assurance of knowing that industry best practices for security are followed.

Ultimate safeguards the confidential employee data systems and processes for hundreds of corporations—some with thousands of members networked across global locations.

Ultimate Software is committed to protecting SaaS assets from all threats, whether internal or external, and was the first cloud provider of human capital management that was awarded the ISO/IEC 27001:2005 certification. This global industry standard, created by the International Organization for Standardization and the International Electrotechnical Commission, validates organizations that have deployed a sound and secure management system for information security.

Ultimate Software also conducts Network Penetration Testing (NPT) annually. These tests, conducted by third-party auditors, assess the security of the SaaS network by testing and identifying potential vulnerabilities.

A full-time staff of security personnel, many accredited as Certified Information Security Professionals (CISSP), manages Ultimate’s security. CISSP indicates rigorous industry testing and signifies a more elevated skill set that ensures information-security, business continuity, and related best practices.

Elizabeth Arden also has high praise for Ultimate's customer service. Nault commented said that, within 24 hours of the storm, the company's customer relationship representative at Ultimate contacted him to assess the situation.

“Our customer relationship manager wanted to make sure everyone was all right and if Ultimate could help us out in any way. You just don’t see this personal level of service anymore," said Nault. "It’s nice to be in a partnership where the boundaries of business relationships and personal relationships come together and people really care.”

“Ultimate Software’s staff has gone above and beyond the call of duty for us on numerous occasions,” said Joel B. Ronkin, executive vice president and chief administrative officer for Elizabeth Arden. “Ultimate Software’s people understand the value of long-term relationships and the kind of support it takes to be truly exceptional.”