IT Consolidation

Program Office Management Support

Project Background

The Client is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of medical supplies and devices, prescription and non-prescription drugs, skin care products, feminine hygiene products, and other healthcare/cosmetic products. They have a global presence in more than 40 countries.

The Client has developed a Global Strategic Information Management Plan comprised of 11 initiatives. The Client contracted TBI to provide assistance on its IT Infrastructure Consolidation initiative by providing best practices advice regarding insourcing and shared services. A TBI project manager and a management consultant were assigned to the IT Infrastructure Consolidation Program Office.

Problem Summary

The Client needed to develop processes for collecting and assessing data from four regions, North America, EMEA, AsPac and Latin America. They also needed to determine the appropriate database to host this data. In addition, they requested guidance on the design of the questionnaire that would be used to collect the information. There were numerous problems associated with this initiative. The first and most prevalent was that most of the 30 affiliate operating companies’ CIO’s didn’t believe a global consolidation of IT infrastructure services would improve IT services or save money. The history of shared services in this client organization was not good, especially in IT services. The client was in the process of renegotiating a desktop outsourcing contract with a leading services provider because of unsatisfactory results. In addition, the affiliates were pleased with other internally managed shared services like global messaging and the intranet. There was also a major conflict over what services at the affiliate level would be in scope for consolidation. After nearly two months of discussions, during which time TBI developed the questionnaire and the data collection and assessment processes, the consolidation project was put on hold. A group of affiliate CIO’s persuaded the Information Management Services executive leadership team that it should “rethink” the consolidation initiative. They wanted to determine whether there would be any quantifiable economies of scale, to document improvements in services and connectivity, and to identify other measurable benefits that could be derived from a shared services approach to managing the IT infrastructure.

The Approach

TBI was provided two regional questionnaires developed by North America and EMEA IT staffs. TBI was asked to combine the best features of both questionnaires and reformat a final version. TBI’s approach to reformat the questionnaire was based on what the final database would have to provide, i.e., random extraction of information and ad hoc reporting. In addition, TBI developed two processes for collection and assessment. The collection process contained a problem resolution sub-process to deal with the myriad of questions and concerns that would emanate from the affiliates. The data assessment process contained a validation sub-process that had two purposes. The first, to validate the data provided by the affiliate to the program office, the second to validate any best practice or process improvement recommendations currently or soon-to-be implemented within an affiliate’s current infrastructure operations. This validation would focus on all targets of consolidation, those high priority “quick hits” that would further justify the IT infrastructure consolidation initiative. If through the validation process substantial benefits could be documented then some of the resistance to the consolidation initiative could be mitigated.

Successful Business Solutions

The Client received:

  • A global questionnaire to collect data from every client location
  • A data collection and process resolution process map
  • A data assessment and validation process map
  • Two draft cover letters for affiliate CIO’s and implementation managers
  • A critical success factors matrix and scorecard
  • A measures and metrics template for asset management
  • A list of recommended high priority targets for consolidation
  • An implementation strategy for a phased consolidation approach
  • Numerous additional suggestions to facilitate a smooth transition to a shared services environment
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