How to Prepare an Organisation Before Deciding to Outsource

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Anna Berczyńska

About Anna Berczyńska

Anna Berczyńska is Director of the Rockwool Global Business Service Centre in Poznań, Poland, established in September 2016 and now employing 100 finance & IT Digital associates. She has worked in the shared services sector for European and American corporations with locations in North America, Australia and Europe for over 15 years and specialised in change management, communication, business processes improvement and consulting.

In every fast developing and efficiency-oriented business there comes a time to look for new solutions. For Rockwool, a company that originated in Denmark over a century ago and which is now present across 28 countries around the world, that moment came in 2016 and resulted from the Rockwool Group strategy.

Rockwool chose to build its first own business service centre in Poznań, in order to enhance its business strategy by leveraging the group’s tools, standards and values, thus helping our group to manage the change at all levels and providing flexible growth opportunities.

The objective behind the Rockwool Global Business Services Centre (RGBS) — a global centre of competence — was to optimize the group’s processes using a competent, experienced and passionate workforce. We understood that a centralized business service centre would create a strong knowledge base in the field of finance and IT functions and would support the Rockwool Group’s business strategy, globally, by leveraging process automation (RPA) and digitalisation solutions.

Insourcing of operations helps a company to focus on its core business while support unctions are delivered by a professional service organization that understands the Group’s philosophy and is also flexible enough, not only to quickly react to changes in the business strategy but also to drive the change management itself.

Having run the centre since it was set up I can say that when one creates a critical mass in the business service centre, both from the perspective of size and scope, companies should make sure that local organizations are ready for the change and that there is commitment from senior management — this is a key success factor, plus, one should definitely not compromise on quality.

Rockwool’s decision was mature and educated. This being said, centre needs to start by fulfilling the need for experienced employees who reinforce the rapid growth of the centre’s operations.

The Rockwool Global Business Services Centre, located in Poznań, Poland, is part of the Rockwool Group and provides financial and IT services within the company. Some of the processes managed within our shared services centre (SSC) are accounts payable, accounts receivable, general ledger, master data and banking. The company offers the opportunity to grow within one process or in the future cross-process options will also be available. Our clients are spread around Europe so there are also occasions to practice different language skills.

Rockwool’s decision to set the centre in Poznań was based on several key aspects, such as the labour market, the availability of skilled employees, the cultural fit with the company, the general business environment and the future ambitions of the city. The city was a good choice for this new investor, entering an already mature business process outsourcing (BPO) market with the target of finding 100 employees within six months and achieving further growth in 2017/2018.

Having said that, I believe the BPO/SSC sector in Poland requires “refurbishment” as far as the labour law is concerned. This would allow more flexible working schemes, would create the appropriate facilities for investors within relatively bureaucratic legal environment, would promote the sector at universities and would support job opportunities for expatriates to fill in the talent pool gaps in the face of growing demand.

It seems that universities are more and more open to business partnering and they’ve been trying to catch up with study programmes, but there should be more investment in digital solutions to prepare the next generation of graduates for the new era of the BPO/SSC sector within the next five years.

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The views expressed in this opinion editorial are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect Emerging Europe’s editorial policy.

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