Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Is finding “real” independent advice in outsourcing a challenge?

On CandidAdvisors - by Co-Founding Partner Steve Jandrell

There are many players in the world of outsourcing, from those who help companies select outsourcing vendors, to those who deliver outsourcing services. The one thing all these players have in common is that they need companies to outsource to be able to sustain and grow their own businesses.

But what happens if outsourcing a set of functions or processes is not the right answer from a strategic business plan perspective?

Whether it is on shore, near shore or off shore a key driver (some might say the driver!) in the decision to outsource is long term operating cost reduction.

While cost reduction is a vital aspect of successful management, what about creativity, innovation, knowledge management and outstanding levels of customer service? Then, if the transition to a new operating model is more focused on a date to achieve cost benefits as quickly as possible - without necessarily building in to the transition plan a people and organization perspective that encourages buy in and plans for long term performance and remedies - what needs to happen?

With many companies who have made the decision to outsource significant parts of their operations, after a two to four year arrangement with an outsourcing vendor or vendors reporting high levels of dissatisfaction, how is that recovered?

The potential for any provider of services in the world of outsourcing to have a conflict of interest is arguably obvious. They have people on their payrolls to deliver services. They incent their people to win business and as much as possible. Making the right balanced decision to outsource in the first place, taking into account all factors and not just cost, to transition in an appropriate way and to manage vendors to maintain high levels of performance over time can be a real challenge.

The role of a truly independent adviser at any stage of the outsourcing / insourcing process is clear. But where do business people go to get that independent advice? With that in mind, CandidAdvisors LLC was founded by two experienced and senior practitioners. As Founders, both Bill and I have major firm experience, and have worked internationally.

We have successful track records of providing candid and results focused business advice to top management and to those tasked with implementing changes to operating models. Using our experience of business transformation, outsourcing / insourcing, shared services and organizational change management, we apply this experience through the principal of “best advice” with no hidden agendas. Our solutions are developed based solely on client issues and options and how those solutions fit with the strategic intent of our clients.

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