Thursday, April 16, 2015

Programs for Innovation in Outsourcing as Demonstrated Through the New Global Outsourcing 100 (Part 2 of a 4-Part Series)

Yesterday, we started this series discussing Delivery Excellence in filling out the Global Outsourcing 100® application. If you missed all of the excitement, check out the blog here.

Today we are going to focus on “Innovation.”

This is the 2nd of four judging categories (Delivery; Programs for Innovation; Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR); and Size & Growth). An extra pat on the back to those companies that have distinguished themselves by receiving half or full stars in one or more specific categories. 

The Programs for Innovation category of IAOP’s Global Outsourcing 100 program gives service providers and advisors the opportunity to showcase how they go about delivering innovation for their customers. It focuses not just on specific examples but on the programs that service providers and advisors have in place to identify and implement innovative solutions.

Some examples frequently cited by industry experts Mary Lacity and Leslie Willcocks are:

  • A better forecasting tool that improves a retailer’s stocking, inventory levels and reduces errors
  • Adding a predictive tool to a claims submission process that significantly reduces rework costs
  • An improvement to an existing manufacturer ordering process that reduces both stocking costs and delivery delays
  • A governance tool that results in more efficient and effective customer management in a multi-vendor environment

Selection process details and company strengths are featured in a special advertising feature, produced by IAOP, in the June 8, 2015, Fortune 500 issue of FORTUNE® magazine.

Defining and meeting service levels and costs is now a given. Today’s customers demand that— and innovation—from their top providers. The addition of this category to the Global Outsourcing 100 gives both providers and advisors an opportunity to showcase what they are doing and will help customers, providers and advisors better focus on this critical aspect of contemporary outsourcing.

Innovation in outsourcing can impact any outsourced process, in any business function and industry. While technology is often a key driver of innovation, innovation is certainly not limited to technology companies or technology services.

Outsourcing buyers understand there are multitudes of qualified service providers and advisors out there; what they really need to understand now is what makes each exceptional. As the outsourcing industry continues to mature, customers have come to expect excellent service that meets or exceeds agreed-to service levels at an agreed-to price. 

Today’s outsourcing environment demands more. It demands service providers and advisors who can work collaboratively with their customers to constantly break new ground, achieve unanticipated benefits and help their clients win both today and tomorrow in the markets they serve. In short, customers across all areas are looking to their providers and advisors to not only see, but to deliver these performance improvements as an integral part of their value proposition.

Finally, innovation in outsourcing is more than just an occasional breakthrough idea. Top outsourcing service providers actually set up company-wide, multi-client programs that encourage, facilitate and support the identification and implementation of improved customer performance through innovation.

Some companies establish productivity improvement targets with all of their customers and then work collaboratively to meet them. Others establish gain-sharing programs at the project-level, while others commit to ‘innovation days’ where customer and provider personnel come together to focus solely on ways to improve customer performance.

IAOP and its judging panel, led by Mike Corbett, IAOP Chairman, invite you to use this space to explain how and why your company is one of the highest rated in this judging category by sharing your programs for innovation with our members.

For more information on the Global Outsourcing 100 Process & Methodology, please visit IAOP’s website, here.


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  3. I wonder if we can call providing good services an innovation. To my mind, it should be a primary goal of any type of business including outsourcing for sure. As for me I work with these guys and I'm absolutely happy with their performance in software outsourcing
    While speaking about new possible methods of collaboration I would suggest that it is not only company but also the government who should think about this aspect. Why not? It's a great source of income for country so the authorities must be also interested in developing special programs to attract clients-to-be.

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