Paul Sutton


Paul Sutton

Head of Financial Compliance, NHS Foundation Trust

Why NEP Cloud?

Before our Organisation joined NEP Cloud we were utilising an old version of Oracle software that was maintained and developed in-house. This required a team of five WTE, working on both maintenance and developments.

Our Organisation had previously believed that we could develop the best Finance and Procurement platform available to us. This resulted in a version of software that was heavily developed and customised specifically to us, which meant that any upgrade path would have required a very costly and time-consuming project. In times when funds are very limited, it never got approval so when the version of software became unsupported it was necessary to find an appropriate alternative solution.


How did NEP Cloud help?

After investigating options, we believe that NEP Cloud was the only way we could have a supported platform, that was properly controlled, at a cost-effective price.

We can utilise the NEP Cloud template, whilst having the freedom to undertake our daily activities in a way that suits our own processes. NEP Cloud brought a discipline to the Trust that required us to examine more closely how we work with the software available and change processes rather than develop what could be sub-optimal way of working

The regular upgrades and patching of the NEP Cloud solution delivers software improvements significantly more quickly and avoids the historic issues of periodically having to initiate a huge project to implement upgrades.

The whole ethos of NEP is the new NHS way of working; working with other Trusts in a collaborative way for the benefit of all. In the early days this was something we had to adapt to. This collaborative working is something the NEP Consortium has at it's core.

By working in partnership with NEP Cloud and the wider NEP Consortium it has meant that we can take advantage of a much wider knowledge base, standard practices and consolidated reporting tools that we would previously have costly to implement as a stand-alone organisation.

What benefits have you seen and what are your future aspirations

We were able to redeploy staff and focus on higher added value activities to support the way we work and capture the features of NEP Cloud. We have only 1.5 WTE managing the integration with supporting systems and maintaining those areas the Trust is responsible for. This is supported by one part-time person who works closely with NEP Cloud and the rest of the NEP Consortium, within Boards and Networking groups, and actively participates in the development of the system and processes.

The NEP Cloud platform supports the development of collaborative working within the NHS, and although this way of working may be new to some organisations NEP Cloud have been doing this for a very long time, so the benefits and underpinning knowledge that can be reaped from joining the NEP Cloud Consortium are considerable.


Individual Statements

  • The landscape in which Finance and Procurement are operating has been a very dynamic place for some time; needing to quickly respond to constantly changing requirements and demands. The Covid pandemic simply accelerated that change mostly overnight. The benefits of having a true Cloud based system through NEP Cloud provides the Trust with the means to respond and continue deliver those new requirements.
  • NEP Cloud isn’t just about technology – it’s about how the technology and people are coming together to get us where we need to be. Our biggest challenge is embedding the resulting change into how we operate.