In this episode, Bluestock is facing just that scenario. Despite internal KPIs doing well, revenue was down. Customers were turning away. Siloed improvements had brought with them a host of unintended consequences.

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FINANCIAL WATERMELONS

In Finance & Accounting, for example, they had successfully sharpened their collections process, which was improving their Order to Cash KPI. However, by changing the process without considering how it would affect customers, they’d alienated an important segment of their buyer base.

In other words, they were suffering from the watermelon effect: KPIs looked green on the outside, but were actually red inside. Performance was up, but sales were falling.

WIDENING THE FOCUS

Bluestock knew it had to focus on wider business outcomes, not just siloed process perfection. For the Finance team, this meant widening its focus from cost savings and control, to effectiveness and value.

So rather than jump straight into an off-the-shelf robotics solution to improve KPIs like Order to Cash and Days Sales Outstanding, the CFO looked at how they could also improve the customer experience. This was a long-standing ambition, but one that historically was too expensive to pursue.

CUSTOMERS AT THE CENTER

Capgemini’s Business Services solutions enabled them to put customers at the center and orientate their services in a way that would encourage repeat business and high levels of satisfaction. This involved techniques for reducing manual interventions (and thereby human errors) while increasing straight-through processing (for faster and enhanced customer service).

Furthermore, from an IT infrastructure perspective, Capgemini’s Automation Drive gave them the means of accelerating their digital transformation. Manual IT processes were converted rapidly into automated, cloud-ready digital services to help speed up business operations.

Assessing the broader implications of internal process improvements is now a default element of Bluestock’s change program — and one that will help them with their plans for global expansion, which we’ll look at in the next episode.