Optimising financial processes

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Something to Consider: Key Reasons to Focus on Defects to Drive Process Improvement

Something to Consider July 2019 4

Key Reasons to Focus on Defects to Drive Process Improvement

I was lucky enough to be joined by Steve Fox, former VP of Global Business Services at Thermo Fisher Scientific, for a discussion around his career in leading three different global GBS/SSO businesses. He shared his experiences, in particular the barriers to success he has faced and overcome.

There was some serious food for thought.

It was refreshing to hear not only what went well in his experiences, but also lessons learned the hard way about what he would do differently.

He echoed my thoughts that cost reduction in Shared Services itself, whilst very achievable in the early years, is not a sustainable strategy and Shared Services leaders have much greater opportunities to add value to the business at large.

Steve focussed on the importance of the Global Process Owner as a business partnering role, and shared a word of caution about not getting distracted by KPI’s without ensuring you have the data insights to fix the underlying issues. This defects focus was where he saw the biggest impact in efficiency and effectiveness.

We took some polls of the audience throughout the session which were very insightful. Over 45% of attendees viewed themselves as having a ‘standard service provider’ reputation within the business.

By far the biggest challenge for attendees (46%) was ‘end to end process understanding and alignment’. This reflects our recent survey results around pain points in the P2P process, so this is clearly the hot issue of the moment, across processes.

It was promising then that the most significant performance improvement priority for our attendees (75%) was business engagement in the end to end process, which has given us an idea for another webcast!

We don’t want you to miss out on the nuggets of gold that Steve shared on challenges and successes he has faced in his experience, so we have made a recording available here. Let us know if the lessons resonate and if you have any questions or comments please reach out, we’d be happy to hear from you.

Our ‘Something To Consider’ snippets are framed as small, digestible, ‘dashes of insight’ around the pillars of what we define as “World Class Finance” – Process Optimization, Financial Control and Compliance, and Risk Assurance, all underpinned by technology enablement and integration.