In a highly competitive global environment, winning and retaining new business can be very costly. In the face of downward pressure on prices, rising and volatile input costs, many organizations have cut costs to the bone. As we navigate 2014, meeting the demands of this new era in competitiveness is characterized not so much by technical breakthroughs but by innovative business models coupled with process excellence and cost reduction.
One popular approach to encouraging process excellence is the Shared Services Centre (SSC) which allows varied processes and practices from across the organization to be simplified, streamlined and standardized, providing the opportunity to re-engineer processes and eliminate tasks that do not add value.
One of the critical factors for success is process visibility, i.e. giving all stakeholders in the process a common view of the status of all activities, enabling them to see bottlenecks in real-time and adjust the process accordingly.
Scalable cloud-based applications for say, risk management and compliance or account reconciliations can have a profound impact on process efficiency and simultaneously bring about welcome opportunities for cost reduction. No wonder that next generation SSCs are looking towards the cloud for inspiration.