Objective:Improving transparency and optimising financial and administrative processes
Challenges:Owing to the current economic climate, the company had set free several financial staff and outsourced a large part of the accounting processes without installing adequate control structures.
Approach:Revising all financial processes. Switching from full costing to direct costing. Designing integrated planning documents. Reassigning tasks and responsibilities.
Activities:• Interviewing management and financial and operational staff
• Creating a strategic long-term plan and deducting cost savings potential
• Creating a customer-based profitability analysis tool
Results:The new reporting format and profitability analysis tool increased transparency dramatically and led to a strategic reorientation of the business. The cost savings potential identified amounted to 30% of fix costs. ... (back)
Client:Internet service company
Objective:Sale of the company
Challenges:Extreme time pressure and maximum confidentiality had to be respected in creating a sufficient data base for the due diligence whilst keeping up day-to-day operations.
Approach:Creating a cross-functional project team. Expanding IT resources for a massive upgrade of the management information system. Breaking down the customer base and creating new customer-centric KPI.
Activities:• Administering the financial data room and designing the relevant KPI
• Accounting for the business planning vis-à-vis the potential investor
• Designing and implementing the new KPI into the management information system
Results:The challenging schedule was adhered to - to the complete satisfaction of the investor. The increased understanding of the business and its key driver led to many strategic projects which shaped the future of the company. ... (back)
Implementing a management information system
Client:Internet service company
Objective:Increase in transparency and profitability
Challenges:The young company was experiencing a period of major growth and had not yet created a sufficient database for sound analysis.
Approach:Identifying the key process drivers and deducing a process-driven business plan. Expanding it to a full-scale management information system including a customer-scoring database. Deducing and steering strategic projects.
Activities:• Creating and administering a process driver-based business plan
• Designing and implementing a KPI system and a scoring database
• Managing the resulting strategic projects
Results:A first version of the business plan was presented to the investor within 3 weeks. Customer monetisation of the core target group was enhanced by 50% within 3 months. The scoring system helped almost entirely eliminate fraud. ... (back)
Objective:Implementation of Fast Close processes and systems across 15 international entities
Challenges:A common approach had to be found for entities that historically had used largely inhomogeneous reporting formats owing to complex holding structures and diverging capitalisation regulations.
Approach:Appraising and accelerating all existing reporting processes and systems. Reorganising the interfaces between the international subsidiaries and the global functional teams. Introducing a consolidation system.
Activities:• Global project management and organisation of international conferences
• Translating the global project requirements into operating processes, formats and systems
• Interfacing between top management and the international entities
• Specifying and testing the consolidation system as well as coaching staff and management
Results:International reporting processes were completely harmonised within less than a year, leading to a reduction in the time necessary for monthly reporting by half. ... (back)
Globalisation of strategic planning
Objective:Improvement in efficiency and globalisation of the reporting and planning processes
Challenges:In a time of major organisational change with a new matrix structure, in addition to the constant implementation of new IT tools, a high employee turnover and major cultural differences in the organisation had to be overcome.
Approach:Overhauling all financial processes. Implementing new document flows and communication interfaces, on both a national and international level. Re-tailoring of existing responsibilities. Structuring the planning process.
Activities:• Extensive interviewing of all departments involved
• Designing and aligning new processes, formats and interfaces
• Overhauling the chart of accounts and the cost-centre structure
• Developing and documenting planning tools
Results:Several new planning tools were successfully integrated during the planning cycle. The time necessary for annual budgeting was reduced by two thirds and reactivity increased manifold. ... (back)
Objective:Analysis of the effects of the IAS/IFRS implementation on both operational processes and company culture across several international entities.
Challenges:The high level of detail desired in the analysis necessitated a very high technical and cultural understanding of the new regulations combined with specifics in national rules and cultures.
Approach:Comparing in detail the technical requirements of IFRS to those of various national reporting standards. Comparingthe reporting cultures of several countries and deducing potential cultural barriers to implementation.
Activities:• Technical analyses of IFRS in comparison with US-GAAP, German GAAP and French GAAP
• Identifying regulatory options and national interpretations
• Discussing technical and cultural matters with functional experts from several countries
• Drawing up a manual
Results:A comprehensive manual was compiled detailing the requirements of the new standards, their impact on processes and potential organisational or cultural impediments. ... (back)
Optimising customer service
Client:Internet service company
Objective:Optimisation of customer service processes
Challenges:Owing to the strong growth the platform had experienced, both the functionalities of the website accessible to customers as well as the customer service back office tools had undergone constant change without sufficient quality control.
Approach:Appraising and reviewing existing processes and systems. Defining target workflows jointly with customer service. Specifying system requirements.
Activities:• Extensive interviewing of product managers, customer service staff and programmers
• Visualising and target-performance comparison of processes as well as system bug-fixing
• Coordinating IT system implementation of the new processes
Results:Customer service processes were streamlined, system errors rectified and new functionalities implemented. Manual interventions by customer service staff were reduced by 50%. ... (back)
Objective:Carve out and sale of two subsidiaries
Challenges:In an extremely difficult market environment the two subsidiaries to be sold first had to be harmonised and downsized.
Approach:Checking all contractual agreements and service contracts. Re-tailoring organisational units and re-defining various departments´ scopes of duties. Reorganising processes and implementing restructuring measures. Preparing a business plan for due diligence.
Activities:• Integrating the two companiesЃf processes into the groupЃfs planning and reporting processes
• Locally managing the project and organising conferences
• Developing and administering milestone plans, business plans and contracts
• Administering and archiving project documents
Results:The processes of the affected entities were streamlined and harmonised. Both entities were sold at a price well above expectations. ... (back)
Objective:Introduction of a SOX-compliant control structure
Challenges:Control structures had to be created for the entire global group that fulfilled all the requirements of the SEC in a
cost-effective and efficient manner without impeding operative performance.
Approach:Creating an overview of existing processes. Identifying potential weaknesses and contingent control mechanisms. Communicating the structure and culture of SOX to the customer.
Activities:• Documenting and visualising corporate processes
• Identifying potential weaknesses and drawing up control measures
• Programming tools for automated selection and monitoring
Results:A complete overview of the process landscape was created including potential weaknesses and sufficient control measures. The tools developed permitted automated selection of the areas and accounts to be checked, based on regular monthly reporting. ... (back)
• Implementing a management information system
• Globalisation of strategic planning
• Optimising customer service