detail of painting, copyright 2006 by Benice Horowitz, Stamford, Connecticut. All rights reserved.

Articles, Case Studies, News, Events


Operational Excellence

Pitfalls of Globalization

Spreading Shared Services Beyond National Borders

Patricia Tyre wrote, “Although shared services originated in the United States, it is within the global marketplace that it has grown in sophistication. American companies with overseas manufacturing or service operations are now in direct competition with Europe and Pacific Rim companies in the drive to migrate their organizations to an effective shared services model.”

Patricia Tyre, “Pitfalls of Globalisation: Spreading Shared Services Beyond National Borders,” Shared Services News, Volume 3, Issues 4 & 5, July/August 2001, pp. 28-29.

Implementing shared services outside of one’s geographical or cultural boundaries is not a standard “plug and play” exercise. Woe to the CEO or shared services project manager who thinks that what works in one part of the world is easily translatable to another. Implementing a shared services strategy, with concepts such as efficiency, service delivery/responsiveness, performance measures, self-directed teams and continual improvement, may end in failure unless thorough consideration is given to strategy, process, organi-sation and technological and knowledge issues.

This article highlights some of the more critical strategic, organizational and technological errors incumbent in global shared services projects.

Going global without project management procedures.

A globalization team might create documents using different word processing and graphics program resulting in incompatibilities and the inability to easily understand the business case or business model. When critical persons on the team have to struggle over words and phrasing, commitment to the project is sacrificed and performance is at risk. Globalization project management without standard automation, standard communication practices and standard delivery quality is prone to failure. For an effective project, form a diverse, cross-functional group including subject matter expert contributors, information technology professionals, regulatory in-country office representatives and globalization consultants. Integrate the project with opportunities for checking cultural clarity and allow flexibility for new laws or locales, or reorganizations.

More "Pitfalls of Globalization"

permanent link

Page 1 of 1

« Back to Articles & Case Studies Index