INTERVIEW OF THE MONTH
INTERVIEW WITH MR. VINEET DWIVEDI,
Global Head – Alcon Global Services & Head AGS India
How has COVID-19 impacted the shared service operating model? What changes are you seeing?
- Flexibility / Agility – Demand for work from anywhere from the workforce – It opens up great opportunities to broaden the talent pool & make it attractive, work from anywhere may continue to increase more in the future. It also provides an opportunity to bring gender diversity as an organization can attract women talent who want to restart their careers but needs flexibility.
- Work-life balance – You see people working online most of the time, it imposes a challenge to switch off and take a break during the day with family. It will be important for a self-define start, pause & stop moments to ensure a better work-life balance.
- Demand-side – For companies, where transformation is in the initial journey it acts as an accelerator to drive the thought that if it can be done virtually then it can be done from a remote location too.
- Leadership role – In fact, the role definition of local leaders in offshore locations (in GICs) would need to be revisited, as and if things are virtual then there is this bigger question which is, how do local leaders in the center add value in respect to How-What the onshore partners brings as a value.
- Digital catalyst – Pandemic has acted as a catalyst for organizational digital agenda, the customers and the internal stakeholders also have become more open for exploring in digital space.
What are the top 5 factors that enterprises should keep in mind to build as they build and mature their shared services?
- People experience – Strategically investing in people upskilling/reskilling, as it is already a talent war in the market, I think the employee value proposition needs to be redefined to have sustainability in talent pipeline and development.
- Communication – As it is a virtual world, 2-way communication with employees is even more crucial. How do we use creative ways to ensure that employees are 100% onboard on the organizational plans and their initiatives, how well they understand & are committed to upskilling & reskilling themselves?
- Digital lens on Continuous improvement – Customers have learned & experienced whole new virtual/digital ways in their day-to-day life, so our audience is not the same as before the pre-pandemic time, hence it is crucial to have teams to continuously improve the processes from a digital perspective.
- Evolved Customer expectation – Customers have also learned & adjusted their ways of working, the audience has become more informed & experienced in digital, which also means that organizations who understand & responses faster to evolved customer expectations will have the advantage.
- Cost competitiveness – As talent demand is growing and we see a lot of talent churn, and it is important to consider how do we maintain a competitive position in the total cost of operation.
How do you see the GBS organization of the future look like? What reasons will contribute to its changes?
GBS Future – GBS organizations will become even more core part of the strategy, talent powerhouse for the parent organization, digital hubs and will evolve as customer advocates and partner on the strategy to have more business penetration and drive better customer experience.
Key reasons to drive the change – Realization of the fact that we can operate virtually, talent anywhere can be tapped with work from anywhere mindset, the great agility & resilience demonstrated by GBS teams during the pandemic and quickly devising & adapting to new ways of working.
What is next for Alcon shared services in terms of digital? Could you share some of the transformations that you have undertaken in your current organization? What business benefit has this yielded?
- As Alcon Global Services is fairly new (2.5 years old) as compared to other companies in the shared services domain, as we started 2.5 years ago, we had an opportunity to leverage the experience of our leaders & associates to implement best practices/learnings from the industry. AGS has 4 centers globally – Bangalore, Warsaw, Kuala Lumpur & Mexico City with 1300 associates serving more than 40 countries globally with 8 functions (Finance, IT, HR Operations, R&D Operations, Quality Operations, Procurement, Customer Operations & Supply chain). Since the beginning, we were mindful of deploying Service management practices (SMP) across all the functions & centers in a standard way. Building digital capability is one of those key practices, which we focus on. Our key focus in AGS is to build digital fluency, digital agility for our associates.
- One example of how we bring speed & simplicity by bringing people, process & technology together – Majority of our ramp-up has happened during the pandemic time, hence it was critical for us to use technology & creativity together to ensure we find, hire & integrate the right talent and also give them a wonderful experience of being part of Alcon. Our teams developed virtual platforms for attracting, onboarding talent, and measuring their experience.