Advice for setting up an offshore or nearshore location

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This deck offers advice on best practices for setting up and managing an offshore/nearshore service center that provides technology, infrastructure, or operations support to a regional or global client base.

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Advice for setting up an offshore or nearshore location

  1. XYZ Service Center ***put your brand message here*** ADVICE FOR MANAGING OFFSHORE CENTERS Selena Sol presents….. selena@selenasol.com http://www.linkedin.com/pub/eric-tachibana/0/33/b53 http://www.slideshare.net/selenasol for business managers looking for ideas and lessons learned
  2. XYZ Service Center ***put your brand message here*** This deck offers advice on best practices for setting up and managing an offshore/nearshore service center that provides technology, infrastructure, or operations support to a regional or global client base.
  3. XYZ Service Center ***put your brand message here*** 1………………strategy: vision, value & differentiation 2……………………………….budget and book of works 3……………………………..…..organizational structure 4…………………………...……….financial management 5…………………………..………….delivery frameworks 6………………………………....population management 7………………....recruiting supply chain management 8…………………………….…………coaching & training 9…………………….……………..……leveraging culture table of contents
  4. XYZ Service Center ***put your brand message here*** DESIGN GOALS how to do it right A charter must guide ALL center activity. The charter is NOT a nice-to-have! • Defines clear, measurable, goals and vision & is the basis for continuous improvement • Provides a location-sensitive strategic roadmap for partnership and collaboration with other Development Centers • Is clear & suitable for use as an internal branding document Charter • Defines vision, identity, values, & differentiation • Provides specific, near-term implementation goals • Goal post against which we constantly measure • Living document • Aggressively & repetitively marketed internally & externally • Partners drive the “what & why”. Local management drives “how” • Build momentum through leveraging quick, high-impact wins (e.g. org structure first, financials second, culture third) • Communicate internally & externally. Then communicate again through multiple channels. Then remind, from induction to exit • Incentivize strategically-aligned behavior from center staff and clients • Listen to team but don’t build the charter bottom-up. Be humble, but courageous in the face of resistance Strategy must come FIRST or else…. • Center will not know what it is building • Growth will be tactical, sporadic, & guided solely by external pressures. • It will be hard to roll back misaligned growth & organizational structures • Cost & control inefficiencies • De-motivated & confused staff and partners strategy: vision, value, & differentiation strategy | org structure | budgets & book of work | finance | delivery | pop mgmt | recruiting | coaching | culture RISKS what if you get it wrong CASE STUDY How we did it in XYZ ADVICE What we’ve learned
  5. XYZ Service Center ***put your brand message here*** DESIGN GOALS how to do it right organizational structure RISKS what if you get it wrong CASE STUDY How we did it in XYZ ADVICE What we’ve learned Empower strong, local management. Staff augmentation is dangerous • Do not hire heavyweight process experts. Hire agile domain experts. Product is key to success • Local mgmt must maintain clear ownership & accountability of all product-line functions • Local mgmt must be accountable for product excellence AND center guidelines. • Without strong recruiting, PMO & strategic functions, center will not be sustainable • Earn “confidence & trust” from clients and respect global matrix-oriented culture • Local team leads for all teams with accountability to both the center & global client requirements • Very strong mid-management layer to drive strategy down to staff level • Flat organizational structure • Do not bypass local team leads • Local team leads should be honest, accountable, & address risks and issues promptly and publicly. • Team leads should represent multiple clients to incentivize horizontal scale efficiencies • Travel restrictions must not hamstring knowledge transfer • Remote managers will micromanage • Management will not scale • We’ll lose our talent • We will fail to implement centre-wide best practices & ops will lack clarity, transparency & control • We’ll fail to provide a service & become a spillover location with a bunch of low-skill coding monkeys Implement strong local management and reduce staff augmentation or else…. strategy | org structure | budgets & book of work | finance | delivery | pop mgmt | recruiting | coaching | culture
  6. XYZ Service Center ***put your brand message here*** DESIGN GOALS how to do it right budgets & book of work RISKS what if you get it wrong CASE STUDY How we did it in XYZ ADVICE What we’ve learned Allocate budgets and book of works at a global, not regional, level • Ensure that center has a voice at the table in global budget & book of works discussions, especially at early stages • Book of work requires a single point of ownership for allocation of work • Make budgets and book of works a month-to-month, not year-to-year activity • Still a work in progress. Some teams have global sponsors. Others are regionally funded & directed. • Currently working with our global partners to set up a more strategic funding and work prioritization approach. • Do not take funding and work whenever it is available. Choose carefully and remember that we are a resource for global projects Budgets & book of works must be driven & allocated globally, NOT regionally or else… • Defensive ownership in the center as various regions compete to ring fence resources and deliverables • Center will become politicized by need to align with region that funds teams, initiatives, and work • Fragmented org structure – pressure from regional sponsors for private teams with dedicated leads • Difficult to implement shared service delivery teams, or center initiatives, as no single region will fund • Fragmented, redundant & short term deliveries strategy | org structure | budgets & book of work | finance | delivery | pop mgmt | recruiting | coaching | culture
  7. XYZ Service Center ***put your brand message here*** DESIGN GOALS how to do it right financial management RISKS what if you get it wrong CASE STUDY How we did it in XYZ ADVICE What we’ve learned • Empower managers with meaningful managerial accounting & budgets • Provide meaningful metrics that support strategic goals • Put in place month-by-month financial review and auditing process Local Financial Controls • Financial trends are owned by managers and reviewed center-wide monthly. • Managers provided with financial advice & training • Audit points built into process to ensure that trends are identified and actioned • Local managers must accept responsibility for financial management & must be appraised on financial control • Provide financial training • Form strong partnerships with finance to generate raw data on which trending is based Financial controls must be locally rigorous or else…. • Loss of budgetary control & poor management • The center will be unable to do any strategic planning • Loss of ownership and accountability at the individual level strategy | org structure | budgets & book of work | finance | delivery | pop mgmt | recruiting | coaching | culture Once allocated globally, locally own & manage budgets & financials. Don’t rely on others for accounts
  8. XYZ Service Center ***put your brand message here*** DESIGN GOALS how to do it right delivery framework RISKS what if you get it wrong CASE STUDY How we did it in XYZ ADVICE What we’ve learned Delivery framework must be realistic and measurable • Delivery framework must not conflict directly with the delivery frameworks or expectations of clients • Hire good people then trust and empower them to do a good job • Delivery framework must drive continual quality improvement, corporate IT governance, and PM best practices • Delivery framework must recognize the diversity of project types, timelines & clients • We have implemented ‘program X’ for quality mgmt & IT governance • Program X is highly flexible to support front-office realities but is firmly based in six sigma, COBIT, CMM, & ITIL global best practices • Program X supports unified & comparable metrics-based mgmt • Regular surveys conducted to measure satisfaction • Framework must not be heavy or process-laden • Framework must be living. We continually improve Program X. • Frequent and meaningful audits must be performed and results must be published publicly to share best practices and to remind staff what is expected of them • Technology infrastructure supporting delivery is worth the investment Delivery, quality, & governance must be managed by a clear & globally consistent & flexible framework or else… • Cannot improve against trends or communicate or report on successes outwards • Cannot benchmark centers against one another • Application of rigid structure across the diversity of contexts will hamstring locations strategy | org structure | budgets & book of work | finance | delivery | pop mgmt | recruiting | coaching | culture
  9. XYZ Service Center ***put your brand message here*** DESIGN GOALS how to do it right population management RISKS what if you get it wrong CASE STUDY How we did it in XYZ ADVICE What we’ve learned strategy | org structure | budgets & book of work | finance | delivery | pop mgmt | recruiting | coaching | culture We must know who we are, what we are good at, and where we are going • The Service Center Capacity Planner ensures that we understand out current state and that our forecasts leverage actual historical trends. • Our People Inventory & Capability Audit tracks key personal information, capabilities, and lifecycle changes • The Seating Plan provides current, near-term and long-term projection of team placement • Implement regular, mandatory audits and provide feedback publicly in the form of plotted trend • Ensure quality data and force managers to act on, and plan against, information Manage population or else… • Centers grow rapidly. Implement the discipline of population management early, or you will lose control • You will not know where you are strong or weak & will not be able to enhance strengths or address weaknesses • Space capacity bottlenecks will be expensive and will constrict technology supply & customer support • Current core capabilities of center and staff should be known absolutely • Future states should be forecasted based on strong assumptions based on actuals • Growth from now to future should be well planned and communicated
  10. XYZ Service Center ***put your brand message here*** DESIGN GOALS how to do it right recruiting supply chain management RISKS what if you get it wrong CASE STUDY How we did it in XYZ ADVICE What we’ve learned Get the people wrong and everything else fails Rigorous, documented, metrics-driven process must drive recruitment from start to finish • Internal (employee referral program) recruitment is key • The market for talent is extremely competitive & firm must develop, invest in, and support its brand • Structured, rigorous, metrics-driven recruitment process • Dedicated team to manage candidate flow & to implement screening process • Process supported by suite of key docs including: Pre RaR, RaR, & Pipeline report • Agencies & internal groups driven by metrics & vendors reviewed regularly • Build a dedicated recruitment team for candidate flow and candidate screening • Demand good job descriptions. Know your requirements before you go to market Implement an efficient, effective supply chain management process or else…. • Your credibility in the market (agencies and candidates) will be destroyed • You will burn out your internal review panel and interview resources strategy | org structure | budgets & book of work | finance | delivery | pop mgmt | recruiting | coaching | culture
  11. XYZ Service Center ***put your brand message here*** DESIGN GOALS how to do it right coaching & training RISKS what if you get it wrong CASE STUDY How we did it in XYZ ADVICE What we’ve learned Hire people for what they are worth but train them to be worth much more than we pay • Accept that team will require a great deal of training in the business • Technologists are motivated by learning and training is a key component of total compensation • Feedback loops must be designed in for control improvment • Job roles and performance measurements must be clear to all • The XYZ Service Center has several training and coaching programs • Brown Bag Program • ‘Black Bag’ Guerilla program • Formal domain training • Leadership & Business planning for Team leads • Mandatory compliance programs • Meatspace library • Regular staff satisfaction surveys • Get everyone trained, but make training a reward not an entitlement • Design training with delivery strings attached • Delegate responsibility for training as far down as you can go. But carefully shepherd the process top down • Measure effectiveness of training against metrics Build your people or else…. • Quickly lose credibility with your clients • Lose your staff, the best ones first • Fail to achieve IT governance objectives strategy | org structure | budgets & book of work | finance | delivery | pop mgmt | recruiting | coaching | culture
  12. XYZ Service Center ***put your brand message here*** DESIGN GOALS how to do it right leveraging culture RISKS what if you get it wrong CASE STUDY How we did it in XYZ ADVICE What we’ve learned Create a culture that locks in your stars and helps individuals and teams achieve full potential • Praise and market individual and team successes • Culture is day-to-day not month-to-month • Definition of culture is an inclusive process. Do not define culture top down. • Events Committee Established • Center Open House • Hackathons • Corporate Social Responsibility program and volunteerism • Special interest groups and games • “Meet the managers” series • X-Box challenge • Events or other culture-oriented committees must align to center strategy. Events cannot become trivialized. Get culture right or else…. • People will leave, stars first strategy | org structure | budgets & book of work | finance | delivery | pop mgmt | recruiting | coaching | culture

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