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The implementation of a shared services operating model is challenging.
The period of time just after start-up is critical. During this period, the new organization must strive to "stabilize" the operations, including the new people, processes and technologies which have been put in place. By understanding what the challenges might be—and what actions can be taken to minimize them—organizations can reduce the inevitable stabilization period, to enable the Shared Service Center to more quickly deliver consistent, predictable outcomes that are associated with high performance.
Organizations implement a shared services operation to advance their journey toward high performance—and yet during the go-live period fluctuating service levels may be experienced.
A Shared Service Center (SSC) focuses on optimizing organizational and operational performance to provide better service at lower cost.
However, there is a distinct period after the SSC has gone live where the performance of people, processes, and technologies—and so the quality of service delivery—fluctuate. This is called the "stabilization period" and can last between six and 12 months—or even longer depending on the size and scope of the SSC service offering.
Stabilization occurs when an organization reaches an operation-ready state. This means processes are executed in a predictable, repeatable and controllable way; and the correct management policies to ensure staff performance is maintained are in place. The SSC operates independently and achieves its customer-service goals.
Accenture draws on its experience of working with organizations to prepare for the launch of a Shared Service Center, creating a blueprint for reaching this fully effective state as smoothly as possible.
Shared Service Centers are designed to be flexible. Leveraging this flexibility will vastly improve the speed at which a Shared Service Center stabilizes.
The objectives of stabilizing the Shared Services Center are:
Managing customers' perceptions is as critical as stabilizing performance.
A tremendous amount of resources, energy and innovation is invested in building and launching a Shared Service Center. Customers expect that it will provide high quality service at a low cost with minimal errors on its first day of operations.
Here are a few guidelines to help achieve stability as early as possible:
May 23, 2007
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