“Dare to give free rein”
For Monica Trolle, Facility Manager at Logica, the transition from buying single services to integrated workplace service has been an education. One of the most important aspects in a successful total delivery is daring to give the service provider free rein.
“If we expect synergies and the best possible service carried out in the most intelligent way, we must allow the supplier scope to work in their way to achieve benefits of scale. After all, it’s the supplier’s expertise that is so crucial when we agree to work together, so we must trust that expertise,” says Monica.
The collaboration between Coor and Logica (then called WM-data) began three years ago when Logica was looking to co-ordinate its Facility Management (FM) while reducing 90 offices by half. For instance the head office was to be relocated to Nacka and merge with eight other offices, and a whole new view of workplace service was taken in conjunction with this move. Monica remembers that while all the restructuring was going on, the company built up an organisation of client competence, carried out procurement, negotiated contracts and also trained in what it entails to buy functional solutions.
“It was obviously a far bigger project than we realised, and we were not used to ordering total solutions. But the groundwork was so thorough that the project is now a template for offices in other locations transferring to a similar solution.”
Coor and Logica held a number of training workshops for personnel. Monica is convinced that the key to a successful project is that everyone involved genuinely understands what a functional solution is, how the collaboration should work and what the benefits are.
Why did you choose to outsource your service operation?
“Dealing with operational issues is not our strength, and it’s time consuming to have many different suppliers. We don’t want our own in-house staff and we want the process to be simple. It’s important to us that Coor also provide their own management.”
Logica was looking for a service provider that was professional, serious and receptive, but above all proactive.
“We value the fact that Coor can use its previous experience with other customers to suggest benefits for us. However, we also like to see our own experience helping others. Shared knowledge is something everyone gains from.”
Coor continuously follows up the service operation using fixed key ratios and compiled delivery reports. For Monica, that documentation is just as important as the suggestions Coor has for operational improvements.
“Because we have a similar service structure but at different locations, we can benchmark between our own offices. Otherwise it can be hard to discern individual services in total solutions and see what would happen if they were cut loose.”
Monica believes this is why it is important to have service level descriptions and price models that are dynamic, rather than static documents. Flexibility is crucial.
“Adapt and adjust. One thing we know is that tomorrow will not be like today. A service provider has to be able to accompany us on that journey, both in terms of volume and in the way the services are structured. Coor has to be able to rely on its professionalism and competence, and we find they have truly shown that they can.”
Where have savings been made in your overall delivery?
“We partly benefit because the people on our premises can do more things simultaneously, and we also free up more of our own time as we no longer have to manage people or negotiate with several suppliers. What’s more, Coor can deliver more cost effectively than providers of a single service. The more services we outsource, the greater the supplier’s ability to help us to perform a function in the most cost-effective way.”
What kinds of demands does an integrated service delivery place on you as an ordering customer?
“We need to be competent and in the know, we need to know what we want and be clear about it. We need to be available and as open and flexible as we demand of Coor. A service provider can be no better than the customer is, so we have to be as good at our job as Coor are at theirs.”
One year ago, WM-data was integrated into the LogicaCMG Group, a leading international supplier of IT solutions with around 40,000 employees in 36 countries, 5,500 of them in Sweden.
Logica is the biggest IT services company in Sweden based on sales (IDC, February 2008). Logica can be found at 41 locations in Sweden.