A $2B Global Software company made a strategic decision to transition from a predominantly internal staffing model for providing Professional Services to a much heavier reliance on strategic outsourcing partners.
This shift created several challenges for their internal systems and operations. Of particular concern was how to maintain a consistent, high-quality level of service across a highly diverse workforce. Adding to the complexity and risk: in-flight, multi-year, phased initiatives to modernize the company’s HR processes and systems (Workday) and migration to a modern Professional Services Automation platform (FinancialForce).
- Assembled a core team to establish a comprehensive outsourcing strategy
- defined a clear set of criteria for determining the ideal mix of candidates who would remain vs. transitioned to other staffing & delivery partners.
- categorized, weighted, and prioritized requirements to maintain consistent and high quality of service delivery.
- accounted for the various needs and “known unknowns” related to dependent processes and systems.
- Defined Transition Plan
- transition experienced Professional Services employees to strategic outsourcing partners to prime their establishment and maturation of capabilities,
- reengineer learning programs to significantly increase virtual self-paced learning and make SMEs available for formal “hot topic” training,
- standardize services and associated staffing methods to support multiple delivery models.
Planning for the Unknown
- Deployment of requirements, dependencies & risks inventories to streamline impact analysis and change management.
- Enforcement of design principles to ensure optimal abstraction of field-developed capabilities that support the transitional needs of the workforce transformation and smooth integration with Workday and Financial Force roadmap deliverables.
- Reengineering of existing data structures and data management processes related to roles, skills, and experience information to create a technical bridge that supports the transition as well as future requirements.
Executing the Transition
- Application of a multi-workstream, multi-phased release approach to account for the complex and risky nature of the effort
- Installment of a dedicated program manager focused on risk mitigation and dependency management.
- Assignment of dedicated leads from the professional services team and investments in training on internal IT processes and standards to ensure a cooperative and coordinated working relationship with internal-IT workstreams.
- Professional Services resources directly engaged in the evaluation, selection, and integration of 3rd party virtual training courses from outsourcing partners such as LinkedIn and Udemy.
- Establishment of collaborative and co-creative relationships with outsourcing partners.
Early in the transition and with support from the core Professional Services team, several new outsourcing partners were rapidly onboarded and more than 40 of the Professional Services employees were rebadged to partners.
A 25% increase in Cloud and other technical certifications was achieved for remaining and transitioned Professional Services employees.
A set of core services were created (in some cases co-created with outsourcing partners), deployed, and leveraged to plan and execute engagements across the full range of delivery models.
Several business/automation capabilities originally created as “transitional” became part of the Standard Operating Procedures (SOP), largely due to the investment enforcing abstraction as a priority design/functional goal.