Shared Services

Best Practices for Shared Services Implementation

Shared services, the consolidation of business operations, usually “back office” or support operations, into a single independently-functioning unit, has been around for some time. It started gaining adoption in the private sector in the early 1980s, and within the public sector starting in the late 1990s. It has gained ground since: in a 2015 AP… Read more »

Moving to a Shared Services Environment (and Adding a Purchasing Department)? Some Shared Experiences from Your Peers

Our question this month comes from member and Editorial Panelist Angela Spells, Accredited Payables Manager, Goodwill Industries of Central Indiana. Background Angela explains that the AP department at Goodwill is reviewing and drafting out what would be the pros and cons of moving to a shared services environment and hiring a purchasing manager. Goodwill’s current... Read more »
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Solid Metrics and Continuous Improvement Help Ensure Shared Services Success at Briggs & Stratton Corporation

Briggs & Stratton Corporation, headquartered in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, is the world’s largest producer of gasoline engines for outdoor power equipment. The shared services department is headed by the financial reporting and shared services director and comprises the following positions: Shared services manager; AP supervisor; and AP associates I, II, and III. Shared services responsibilities include:... Read more »
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The Benefits of Migrating AP to Shared Services

Shared service centers (SSCs) are not a new concept. As far back as the 1970s, organizations centralized AP and other noncore processes. But while these organizations performed AP and other processes in centralized data centers, the methodology of that era was processing-oriented, as opposed to service-oriented. Since the 1980s, the shared services concept has evolved… Read more »

Case Study: Use Outsourcing to Get Rid of the Things That Cause You Pain

Chip Johanni was an accounts payable manager at a large insurance company for close to 15 years before becoming a full-time continuous improvement consultant. His AP department had 40 AP associates, processed a million transactions a year, and sent out $79 million a day in disbursements. “In a department with that kind of activity, we... Read more »
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Improving Finance and Accounting Shared-Service Center Performance

Setting up shared-service centers (SSCs) for finance and accounting operations is a great cost-saving idea—as long as performance remains high. However, as pointed out in a recent Sungard white paper, Improving the Performance of Your F&A Shared Service Center, many companies that implemented shared services for finance and accounting soon realized that any cost savings could... Read more »
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UMMS Shared Services Department Rewarded for Outstanding Turnaround in AP Shared Services

After a series of impressive accomplishments in accounts payable, the shared services team that supports the hospitals of the University of Maryland Medical System (UMMS) was awarded the prestigious AP Department of the Year Award for 2015. The team’s manager, Bethany M. Mezzadra, APM-D, MBA, Director of Disbursements, accepted the award on behalf of her... Read more »
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Guide to Shared Services on AP & P2P

Shared services is the standardization, re-engineering, and consolidation of non-core functions within an organization. Many organizations operate accounts payable from within a shared services center, which allows the function to benefit from streamlined processes and economies of scale. According to 2011 benchmarking data, approximately one-third of accounts payable departments operate within a shared services environment.... Read more »
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10 Steps to Ease the Move Toward Shared Services

While any change can be disconcerting, the change to a shared services environment can be a positive development for AP. There are numerous benefits, including streamlined, automated, and standardized processing—and, of course, lower costs. “The idea behind shared services is to continually evolve core processes so that AP can see productivity gains. AP can also… Read more »

What Are the Benefits of Migrating to a SSC?

Since the 1980s, the shared services concept has evolved into one in which a customer/partner process is collaborative, flexible, and committed to high service levels. Process Standardization, Improvement, and Control Are Key In a study conducted by IOFM, respondents were asked to identify the main reasons their organizations moved the accounts payable function to shared... Read more »
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