Seven rules for creating successful global IT services – Rule 4
Ten years ago I was working at a large service provider who had many business units across many towns. We wanted to work with one IT environment, one e-mail account, one (dual) datacenter, one service desk, and a single standardized set of applications to help us to support our clients with singular truths (finance, logistics, client information, etc.). We were successful after several years, but it definitely took time. Not only due to the technical work – as this requires an in-depth roadmap for the technological and financial challenges – but also for the management of change, which can be complex in these scenarios.
“Where is the service desk located?”, “What will happen to obsolete employees?”, “Which environment is the best (and who has to change)?”, “What is the business case?”. These are some typical questions which sit at the top of the iceberg. Resistance was also present in the form of: “The clients won’t accept this”, “I don’t have time for this”, “I don’t have the budget to support this”, and “I only will do this when you do something for me”.
I see this story constantly repeat itself. Presently, global companies can see the advantages of an integrated IT environment where all employees around the globe can work with identical information that is supported by the best, relatively inexpensive IT services. All opportunities for offshoring and globalization should be explored. Quint has supported many of these local and global projects, and we have developed seven rules that have worked for us on both a global and local scale.
Rule 4: Define and execute your sourcing strategy
The global changes you want to realize are complex, and they will be hard to execute all alone. You will need partners to support you. These partners can help continue the current work when your own employees have limited capabilities and/or time, start local hubs for specific services, and also deliver technologies that you may want to roll out globally.
You could even decide to outsource specific IT services, or possibly all of them (see rule 2). In that case, you would need a service provider that has the resources to serve your organization long term.
At the same time, take care in selecting any service provider because changing environments can cause that partner to no longer be the right one for you at a later point in time. To maintain your future flexibility, make sure that a clear exit strategy is defined to prevent you from vendor lock-in.
Next week we have a look at Rule 5: Balance between business goals and personal goals
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