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Client Stories

GBS Vision and Strategy

Creating a more effective business services model to scale to meet future demands

Business Services Global Service Delivery

Creating evaluation models across multiple dimensions to drive the selection of center sites

Operating Model Optimization

Setting the path for a more agile and scalable operating model to meet future demands

End-to-End Process Improvement

Deploying a global end-to-end business process model to drive best practices

Outsourcing - Next Generation

Providing guidance and key insights in outsource provider selection and negotiation

Outsourcing Remediation

Resetting outsourcing relationship and governance to turnaround provider performance

GBS Enablement for a Future Ready Enterprise

Guiding the approach to large scale transformation and the work required to enable a future ready enterprise  

GBS Digital Technology Planning

Creating the digital technology foundation for a new GBS organization

Governance Design and Execution

Launching effective shared services governance in a new hybrid outsourced/captive operating model

Outsourcing - First Generation

Improving the efficiency and effectiveness of finance shared services utilizing outsourcing

Outsourcing Contract Review

Enabling improvements without recompeting the agreement

I have worked with Bob for many years, initially in building a shared services organization and later in optimizing, transforming and expanding the operation.  He has always been a forward thinker and has delivered pragmatic solutions to support and evolve the strategy of programs we have been partnered on.  

Gareth Morgan

Vice-President Global Finance Transformation

Walgreens Boots Alliance

Because they are operators, the crew at Timberstone understand what it takes to successfully deliver large enterprise transformation initiatives and drive high performance. They were in the trenches with me as we built a brand-new shared services organization from the ground up and made sure that they coached my leadership team on what they really needed to hear, and not just what they wanted to hear.

Jay Desai

Vice-President, Head - Global Business Services

Japan Tobacco International

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GBS Vision and Strategy

Challenge:  A large multinational services company’s 3 disparate global centers needed a more effective business services model to scale to meet future demands across multiple technology and business processes.  The organization needed to reduce G&A spending as a percent of revenue as well as unlock value through a more efficient and scalable operating model for GBS. 

Our Approach:  Using our Timberstone Maturity Assessment, we assessed the global centers and provided recommended changes to the target operating model along with actionable, specific improvement plans for each center, aligned to target objectives and designed to address short and long term needs.  Recommendations included a high level business case and a roadmap for implementation.

Results:  The company obtained market insights on what was possible, along with an overarching roadmap designed to accelerate long term, sustained transformation.

GBS Enablement for Future Ready Enterprise

Challenge:  The CEO of a U.S. retailer wanted to create a future ready enterprise.  The company identified an outsourcing partner to facilitate moving to an enterprise of the future across a broad range of front and middle office services in Merchandising, Customer, Supply Chain, Finance and Human Resources.  Their vision was to create a global business services (GBS) organization that could facilitate the strategic outsourcing partnership in combination with internal captive capabilities, starting with selected pilots of third-party services. 

Our Approach:  We provided the framework and guidance for establishing a GBS function, including organization, roles and responsibilities and decision rights.  We provided insights on developing solutions for pilots, including accountabilities, scope, services and pricing.  We developed contract structures for both an overarching master outsourcing agreement as well as schedules for individual services.  We provided market insights on terms and conditions.  We introduced additional service options for consideration to enable a robust review of possibilities.

Results:  The program has enabled the organization to take a fact based, solution-oriented approach to a large scale transformation initiative and appropriately prioritize the work required to enable a future ready enterprise.

Business Services Global Service Delivery

Challenge:  A global professional services firm was looking to create a delivery network that can deliver client-facing services from a network of service centers across multiple global locations.

Our Approach: The effort revolved around 1) sizing the delivery centers that comprise the network, 2) determining the client services to be supported by the nodes of the network and 3) selecting the city/country pairs that optimize delivery costs, access, technology infrastructure and service capability for each location. Evaluation models were developed across multiple dimensions to drive the selection of center sites. Additionally, scenarios were developed to accommodate future growth in both the types of services delivered and the number of clients served.

Results: This ongoing project will develop an optimized delivery footprint and timeline for the delivery network build out. The next phase will be developing detailed transition plans for each center and an evaluation of existing brownfield site capabilities.

GBS Digital Technology Planning

Challenge:  A leading life sciences and consumer goods company, while creating a new multi-functional global business services organization, needed to define which digital technologies to deploy across functional silos to enhance user experience, lower operational costs, and avoid duplicate investments.

Our Approach:  Through a series of facilitated workshops supported by market intelligence, members of Timberstone Partners and the client team defined first the landscape of GBS digital technologies required by class and functionality (e.g., customer relationship management, knowledge management, enterprise content management, service management). We collectively identified gaps in cross-functional digital technologies distinct from those used to manage and execute individual functions. The client team defined where corporate level enterprise technologies were already selected against this landscape. Armed with a list of gaps that needed to be filled, we conducted workshops to prioritize classes of digital technologies.

Results:  The company obtained a plan for technology selection and acquisition for high priority technologies, including refined requirements, a short list of specific technology vendors and refined budgetary requirements.

Operating Model Optimization

Challenge:  A large services firm’s Finance function target operating model (TOM) was difficult to scale for growth and past improvement initiatives no longer met the needs of the business today.

Our Approach:  Timberstone Partners developed a service delivery model that effectively and efficiently incorporates remote, embedded, center-based and off-shore resources to increase flexibility and optimize operating costs. We created a roadmap with a supporting opportunity case to address short and long-term opportunities across all TOM layers - service delivery model, people, process, technology, data and reporting, governance and controls. Recommended operating model improvements were stress tested against two critical finance sub-functions to ensure efficacy and completeness.

Results:  The “outside in” perspective, developed in working with numerous clients across industries globally, provided unique and valuable insights.  The internal teams were better able to articulate a vision for the future based on reevaluating service delivery for both the short and long term.

Governance Design and Execution

Challenge:  A consumer goods company had completed an outsourcing agreement for core finance and accounting activities, but did not build the governance processes nor design the retained organization needed to support the new operating model. 

Our Approach:  Timberstone Partners assisted in establishing the organization, processes, and procedures for managing process and service performance across internally delivered and outsourced services.  We also established the model for ongoing process transformation.   Unique to this client was also managing through a divestiture of a significant portion of the business while concurrently establishing a new operating model.

Results:  The company accelerated their learning curve and was able to establish a foundation for success by leveraging Timberstone Partners’ knowledge of outsourcing governance along with coaching, tools and templates.

End to End Process Improvement

Challenge:  A large retailer had grown their Global Business Services (GBS) operating model largely geographically in different regions of the world and were looking to drive higher levels of global standardization and adoption of best practices across end-to-end processes.

Our Approach:  Members of the Timberstone Partners team guided Global Process Owners (GPO) in developing their "Northstar" and compass for a series of end-to-end business processes. We provided the overall framework and supporting external information for individual process design books inclusive of the process vision; best practices; outcome based and operational performance metrics; gap analysis; data, IT, policy, and competency requirements; and a multi-year set of key initiatives and plans. Our work was conducted mostly through individual meetings with each GPO as well as collective meetings across the GPO leadership team to ensure consistency of approach and output.

Results:  The company was able to better leverage their GPOs to drive improved performance.

Outsourcing - First Generation

Challenge:  A European beverage company was looking to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of finance shared services utilizing outsourcing.   They had a proposal from an outsourcing provider, but needed to complete the actual agreement.

Our Approach:  We helped negotiate the outsourcing agreement focusing on all key business terms and conditions to match client needs and market standards.  We worked alongside the client, their outside legal counsel and the provider.  We leveraged our experience in the marketplace to help ensure the parties were able to enter into an agreement that is good, fair, safe and sustainable.

Results:  The company completed the agreement on the planned timeline, with the key constructs on which they would rely on in the future incorporated.  Our collaborative approach ensured all parties worked together successfully to achieve their goals. 

Outsourcing - Next Generation

Challenge:  As part of a strategy to implement global business services, a global manufacturer and retail company was looking to finalize the selection of and contracting with a BPO Service Provider for services in source-to-pay, order-to-cash and record-to-report global processes.

Our Approach:  We provided insight to the client in the comparison of the proposals received from four BPO Service Providers. We then facilitated the selection of the BPO Service Provider to refine their proposal and negotiate a contract. We worked with the client’s business and legal teams to assist in negotiating the key business terms and pricing included in the contract by providing insight on points of leverage and market practices on similar BPO contracts. Subsequently, we assisted the client in developing and designing roles and processes for governing the relationship and managing the contract with the BPO Service Provider. We have also assisted in the actual governance of the contract while the client builds the Governance Team. 

Results:  The program has enabled a revitalized finance service delivery operation aligned with the company’s future strategy.

Outsourcing Contract Review

Challenge:  A global food and beverage company had a long-standing outsourcing agreement with a leading service provider, but knew the agreement had not kept pace with evolving terms in the marketplace.  They wanted improvements without recompeting the agreement.

Our Approach:  We provided insights into the contract against current market trends and recommendations for revisions to the contracted business terms. We helped the company navigate negotiating contract improvements in a fact-based manner, allowing sustainable changes to be made.

Results:  The company was able to obtain the insights of professionals who have a broad view of the marketplace, without the time-consuming and expensive approach of recompeting their agreement.  We helped the company improve the agreement in a way that was productive, timely and cost effective.

Outsourcing Remediation

Challenge:  A leading manufacturer of automotive supplies had outsourced information technology infrastructure as part of a spin out from the former parent.  The service provider was not achieving critical service levels and had failed key transition milestones, but it was not feasible to revert to insourced services.  The company wanted insights in better managing the provider to appropriate levels of service, as well as how to better manage the customers of IT services in an outsourced environment. 

Our Approach:  Members of the Timberstone Partners team coached both the client’s governance and the service provider teams in how to better meet contractual obligations as well as satisfy business needs.  In particular, we helped the client team establish the structure of operational governance and clarified the roles and responsibilities of both parties.  Our team also provided expertise and insights on how to restructure the agreement to better meet current business imperatives, in the role of neutral third party. 

Results:  The parties successfully settled millions of dollars in disputed fees and established a mutually beneficial working agreement for the future.

GBS Vision and Strategy
Future Ready
Bus Ser Global Ser Delivery
GBS Digital
Operating Model Optimization
Governance Design and Execution
End t End Process Improvement
Outsourcing - First Generation
Outsourcing - Next Generation
Outsourcing Contract Review
Outsourcing Remediaton
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