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Customer Stories – Intertrust

Intertrust Resources Management Limited


The FESA HR system we now have in place means that clients do not need to invest in their own system and it is reliable. We have opened up this system so that HR departments can have independent access to their data 24 hours a day, seven days a week. They can also grant authorized employees access to the system so they too can access and manage their own data.

Christian Heinen
Managing Director, Greater China

Transitioning HR from transactional to strategic business partner

Business Profile

Intertrust, a global leader in corporate and fund administration services, provides a broad range of specialized administrative services to multinational corporations and private clients from around the world. With over 1,700 specialists working in 33 offices spread across 24 countries, Intertrust has built up global respect and over 60% of their clients are Fortune Global 500 companies.

Key challenges

HR is facing some of its of biggest challenges to date, as it struggles to transition from traditional back-o­ce operational roles into a much more strategic function. This requires HR not only working with the C-suite to give strategic input but also spearheading a number of new roles throughout the organization. Board expectations of what HR should be delivering has also risen dramatically. As well as fulfilling all its existing functional duties including hiring and payroll, HR is increasingly being expected to lead on training and development, retention of key talent, building sustainable talent pipelines, as well as driving strategic HR and change initiatives. As part of this journey, a seat at the board table is no longer ‘preferable’ in HR—it has become ‘essential’ to enable proper strategic input directly linked to the business objectives. Unfortunately, in many organizations the time and resources a‑orded to the HR team are somewhat lagging leaving many HR departments stretched to—and in some cases beyond—breaking point. This has grave implications not only in terms of HR capability but also from a wider business perspective. Christian Heinen, Managing Director, Greater China, Intertrust noted this overburdening of HR is now presenting multiple challenges to the business as a whole, “The major issue with this is that some organizations may fall out of complete regulatory compliance as a result.” He added, “We can see that such problems lead to ine­ciencies, most notably when management needs to get involved in managing HR problems, which uses up vital resources just to avoid putting themselves at risk.”
The upshot of this was that Intertrust found itself faced with dramatically increasing HR demands from its clients. HR teams needed a user-friendly means of accessing key metrics, they also required faster response times and wider service scope. Moreover, there is also increasing demand to make certain self-service functions available to end-users such as management of sta‑ holiday and benefits. All of this necessitated an up-scaling of services provided in order to provide comprehensive HR solutions to organizations—allowing both HR and end-users to access relevant employee data whenever and wherever they needed it.


Looking to implement a system capable of meeting the increasingly complex and diverse requirements of their clients, Intertrust sought the services of FlexSystem who were able to provide advice on its set up and roll out. During this period, aside from leading the strategic shifts required, HR also has to champion the process of establishing suitable HR technology systems to facilitate these changes. Ashley Clarke, Chief Operating Officer, FlexSystem pointed out the importance of leveraging appropriate HR technology to help HR move their organization along this process, “An effective way for companies to build and strengthen their HR function is to start by shifting time-intensive, repetitive administrative tasks to a computer-based system.”

HR and employee functionality

FlexSystem, understanding the criticality of the change management process, transformed Intertrust’s business processes by introducing its FESA HR suite of technology solutions. The FESA HR system provided a unified platform for day-to-day HR operations ranging from recruitment to payroll, in addition to HR self-service functions for employees. More importantly, the system also provided HR with up-to-the-minute business intelligence-based analysis, empowering them to make the best strategic decisions regarding their talent and HR policies.

Servicing entire range of core HR functions

The FESA HR system enables HR to manage a raft of functions including: organizational development, talent management, payroll, recruitment, training, performance management and HR analytics. Heinen explained, “The system we now have in place means that clients do not need to invest in their own system and it is reliable. We have opened up this system so that HR departments can have independent access to their data 24 hours a day, seven days a week. They can also grant authorized employees access to the system so they too can access and manage their own data.”

Empowering HR to champion business development

Clarke confirmed the importance of HR themselves in championing the uptake of such technology and using it to take key metrics to the board to drive corporate strategy based on the evidential metrics they are crying out for, “The next level of HR technology is boosting ease of use and making it more end-user driven. Today, technology can solve most underlying HR data issues and is just waiting for HR to take it to the next stage and cross that chasm to the boardroom table.” Flexsytem’s experience in this area helped ensure a smooth transition to the new system—both from a technical perspective and also a human one too—with critical advice on the standardization of HR policies and processes and the data conversion required to bring this about.


The FESA HR system has allowed Intertrust to offer its clients the flexibility needed for HR, and employees, to access relevant records when and how organizations want, without the costs usually associated with establishing and maintaining the HRIS itself. This shift has also allowed HR to free up time and move away from traditional administrative operations toward more strategic—and important—tasks such as finding and retaining core talent, training and succession planning. This outsourcing of HR functions presents a few challenges of its own, as it often involves overcoming a significant amount of inertia to bring about the cultural shift required. Heinen likened the HR transition to trying to quit smoking, “People know smoking shortens your life, but people continue to do it despite knowing they will live five years less. It is more than HR simply making a nice sales pitch to skeptical colleagues. It’s about inspiring users that, in the end, change will make the company more effective, less risky, more efficient, more future-proof and provide a great return on investment. This message should not only come from a few low-level advocates—it also needs to come from management.”


The adoption of the FESA HR system has brought clients a number of important advantages.

1. Flexibility & extendibility

The system comes with a standard component that includes transition and management of: employee profiles, profession records, attendance records, payroll and annual leave. An optional add-on module also affords additional employee self-service functionality.

2. Reliability & stability

FlexSystem’s decades of IT system implementation and maintenance assures trouble-free roll outs.

3. Customized on-going support

Not only helping to implement the system prior to roll out, FlexSystem consultants also provide a full raft of practical and relevant suggestions regarding standardization of HR policies and workflows.

4. Time efficient

In addition to bringing significant time savings by reducing form filling and duplication of data management, critical metrics can also be accessed anywhere and at anytime.
Within three to six months, Intertrust was already seeing the benefits that came with these enhancements to the HR system. Work processes became more standardized to fit the model of today’s more progressive and strategic HR, and greater flexibility was given to clients—with faster and more accurate delivery of services on a 24-7 basis. Not only providing clients with a more cost-effective means of managing HR, more importantly the new system saves HR a lot of time. Time they can invest more wisely on what they do best—pushing strategic HR policies that help drive the business to future success.
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