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Digital Turbocharges Support Function & Shared Service Performance

Digital Turbocharges Support Function Performance

In the United States and Europe alone, more than 25 million people work in support functions—HR, IT, finance, customer call centers—in companies across a diverse array of industries. The administrative expenses associated with what are also often called shared services exceed $2.5 trillion, according to BCG analysis.

Imagine what these organizations could do if they not only cut the administrative expenses for these functions roughly in half but also:

  • Boosted productivity, service quality, and speed of innovation across support functions
  • Enhanced their ability to adapt to and scale up or down to meet the changing needs of internal customers
  • Made the functions more attractive to current and prospective talent

Digital Cuts Cost Across Shared Services

Using Digital Tools to Streamline Back-office and Service Operations

Savvy use of digital tools and technologies—such as robotic process automation (RPA) and artificial intelligence (AI)—can help companies turbocharge the performance of their support functions. How? Digital transforms these functions from merely transactional service factories into service-solution providers and strategic partners that unleash new value throughout the organization.

Armed with digital tools, employees in these functions can draw on the right data—from multiple sources, in real time—to swiftly deliver services tailored to the needs of their internal customers, at every step in the customer journey. That kind of service frees customers—employees, managers, and executives—to devote the lion’s share of their time and energy to activities that create the most value.

When people can focus on value-adding activities such as formulating effective strategies, designing successful marketing campaigns, analyzing the competitive landscape, and crafting smart business plans, they and their entire organization win.

BCG’s Unique Advantage

BCG takes a holistic approach aimed at achieving and sustaining positive change for our clients by:

  • Ensuring that digitization of support functions aligns with your company’s C-level strategic agenda
  • Focusing on capturing the most valuable strategic opportunities, versus merely considering technology for technology’s sake
  • Taking into account disruptive trends and your operating model while crafting your digital transformation plan
  • Tapping into our engagement teams’ broad and deep functional and industry expertise
  • Combining deep digital competencies with a network of powerful partners to support end-to-end digital transformation for your support functions
  • Helping you build the people capabilities and foster the organizational cultural change essential for digitization of your support functions
  • Collaborating closely with leaders at all levels in your organization to ensure a successful outcome
  • Deploying proven and proprietary toolkits to support you through every stage of your digital transformation journey

BCG is helping large, complex global organizations complete ambitious digital transformations of their support functions and shared service organizations, across all industries, including automotive, pharmaceutical, consumer goods, industrial goods, mining, and IT. Thanks to our holistic approach, we have built an extensive track record of success with our clients. Examples of results include 30-75% reductions in FTEs and 40% targeted cost reductions.

Learn More About Digital Support Functions & Shared Services

How Digital Can Turbocharge Shared Services

New technologies such as artificial intelligence and cognitive computing won’t be the death knell for SSOs, as some fear. Instead, they will bring an urgently needed upgrade.

Powering the Service Economy with RPA and AI

These two complementary technologies are the brawn and brains of performance. Companies can gain quick wins through RPA while strategically introducing AI for sustainable benefits.


Meet BCG's Experts in Digital Support Functions & Shared Services

  • Organization design
  • Digital shared services
  • Digital organization set up
  • Agile transformation
Sukand Ramachandran

Partner & Managing Director

London

  • Leads BCG’s corporate banking segment
  • Leads BCG's global work in technology and operations in capital markets Member of BCG's Lean Advantage expert network
  • Business strategy
  • Organization
  • Lean advantage
  • Enablement and lean academy building
  • Lean and productivity in telecommunications
  • Lean and productivity in administration
Digital Support Functions & Shared Services

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