If you participated in our State of Outsourcing 2011 survey (see here and here), you may have been anxiously monitoring your inbox for a notification that you’d won the iPad 2. Well, the anticipation is over, and we can announce that the winner of the drawing is Stephen Kincanon, Vice President – Shared Services at Sara Lee Corporation. Congratulations, Stephen!
We managed to get a moment to talk with Stephen once he’d settled down from the excitement…
HfS Research: Congratulations Steve on winning the iPad 2. Can you share a little about your role and your involvement with outsourcing?
Stephen Kincanon: At Sara Lee, I am responsible for shared services for North America and the overall relationship with our BPO provider (IBM). As related to outsourcing, I was involved in the business case development, RFI, RFP, vendor selection and transition of Sara Lee’s activities to the BPO provider.
HfS Research: Based on your experiences to date, what would you say are the biggest opportunities and challenges for today’s organizations looking at moving into a global outsourcing business model?
Stephen Kincanon: I believe one of the biggest challenges for today’s organization is making sure there is flexibility with your BPO provider due to the number of changes within the organization such as mergers, acquisitions, divestitures, restructuring, etc. Having a provider that is willing to work with you during these time is critical to the success of your outsourcing and shared services.
The opportunity that comes to mind is finding a single delivery center that can meet the global needs of a company. If a company can have a single location providing BPO services it will reduce overhead costs for both the provider and customer. One of the challenges in this area is finding a low-cost location that has the language capabilities for a global company.
HfS Research: Is there any advice you would share with peers in other organizations, thinking of outsourcing?
Stephen Kincanon: The advice I would share would be: “make sure you select a provider that will be flexible in time of change and willing to work with you in creating solutions and not be focused on contract terms”.
HfS Research: What are your views on HfS and the work we’re doing? Anything we can improve upon?
Stephen Kincanon: HfS provides an unbiased view of the suppliers and trends with outsourcing and helps buyers understand what is coming in the future.
HfS Research: And finally, what will you do with the iPad 2?
Stephen Kincanon: Hide it from my 18 year old daughter.
HfS Research: Thanks Stephen – enjoy the iPad, oh and the BPO experience too