IT Strategy

IT strategy for a leading automotive supplier and manufacturer

The client had gone through a severe downturn in its business, resulting in a drastic cut in all IT expenses and investments. At the time of the Ginkgo assignment, the client’s IT was set up with a high degree of outsourcing, so they had a rather limited effect on IT service performance and quality. Also, the top IT management was on the move: new divisional CIOs were being put in place.

Ginkgo supported one of the divisional CIOs in conducting a quick assessment of the relevant IT inventory (projects, assets, expenses/investments) to derive a description of the IT status quo. Through interviews with key stakeholders and site visits, Ginkgo was able to assess major weak spots in IT service delivery as well as the business’s unmet expectations from IT.

Based on a set of principles and clear business expectations, a set of strategic options was developed that would move IT much closer to business, drive IT delivery performance in the short and long term, and build a divisional IT organisation to sustain IT benefits to the business. These options were discussed in a top management workshop and a recommended 5-year strategic IT roadmap was approved for execution.

Development and implementation of an IT strategy and architecture

The analysis of three corporate divisions of an international Pharmaceutical company for the creation of an IT strategy model was the project subject.

The functional-, application- and technology- As-Is and target architectures were developed in consideration of the IT delivery and IT cost structures. The preparation, execution and moderation of workshops as well as the documentation were also part of the tasks. Additional result was the establishment and communication of the IT strategy process.

Derived from the IT strategy, action items from business demands are now the basis for an annual IT investment decisions.

IT Innovation

Development and implementation of mobility solutions

Introducing mobility services and workflows enabled employees to manage approval processes for a number of business applications faster and more efficiently. The success factors for this project were multi-device standards, an adequate security architecture and a high usability of the user interface. Ginkgo developed the solution concept and managed the realisation of this significant business enhancement.

IT Innovation in automotive sales processes

The client had previously emphasised the global template for its sales processes and IT system landscape, and went through a harmonisation and standardisation process for its strategic markets. Focus markets such as the German market were also looking into additional possibilities of supporting the sales processes digitally.

Having been deeply involved in the client’s process and system template, Ginkgo was asked to analyse these digital opportunities with respect to creating benefits for retail sales as well as on the OEM level. After selecting the most relevant customer interaction points that could be enhanced through digitisation, potential technological and digital features arising from competition, digital industry leaders as well as interviews with the clients’ dealers themselves were listed (the latter had been inventive, creating their own features like apps, customised handhelds, etc.).

After a strategic evaluation of the resulting options, focus use cases and their digital potential were identified and a framework that included both OEM and retailer interests was created. The key aspects here were time-to-market, benefits evaluation within the sales journey, compliance with OEM standards, and ease of integration and scalability. Various options in terms of an organisational and technological framework were presented to management as the basis for a digital path forward. A recommendation was selected for implementation.

M&A and PMI

Acquisition of near-shore IT services centre

The offshore IT service provider set out to acquire a nearshore operations centre for application development and maintenance.

Ginkgo was asked to perform a due diligence assessment of this service unit and also to assess the commercial company evaluation. In a third step Ginkgo actively supported the contract negotiation period, resulting in a successful acquisition.

PMI of telco/cable provider operations

After acquiring a nationally operating cable provider, the client faced the challenge of realising a first merger milestone within operations in a very short timeline. As a long-term partner and based on experience gained in one of the company’s previous PMI processes, Ginkgo was engaged to once again support the PMI process for the operations department.

Ginkgo took on responsibility for designing and implementing joint processes as well as handover procedures to ensure organisational readiness for “commercial day one”, when both companies would start to market combined service and product offerings. Based on the results achieved in phase one, several other projects were initiated to further ensure and enhance smooth interworking of all operations processes. At the same time, areas with high synergy potential were identified and analysed, and actions defined to realize those synergies.

As the coordinating body, Ginkgo was responsible for monitoring, controlling and reporting the progress of all operations initiatives within the merger program to ensure that the financial targets set by the executive board were met.

Concept Development

Realisation of new steering model for international automotive car dealer networks

An international car manufacturer was facing a range of challenges, including limited visibility of sales and after-sales performance. This was due mainly to the lack of a global standard for dealerships with regards to processes, reporting and supporting tools, which made steering and decision-making difficult.

Ginkgo collaborated closely with the client to standardise tool-supported retail and wholesale processes for sales and aftersales on a global scale, thus enabling the client to enhance visibility and their ability to steer markets. Implementing these processes globally within dealerships necessitated a detailed rollout approach to ensure adherence with the standards defined. The rollout approach comprised an overall framework ranging from project management, requirements analysis, budgeting and contracting, change management, communication and training to IT implementation.

The approach supported the rollout of new processes and tools on a global scale, helping the client enhance visibility of their sales and aftersales data to support decision-making.

ITSM proof of concept and program planning

The client requested a proof of concept for a complete end-to-end IT Service Management (ITSM) approach for their retail Europe business and global product lifecycle management (PLM) function. Ginkgo developed a comprehensive ITSM concept, starting with a maturity statement, quantified effort and benefit potential, resulting in a business case and interdependency matrix.

Design principles for the ITSM approach were derived and agreed implementation scenarios documented and prioritised; two transition planning scenarios were suggested. Based on the documented proof of concept (PoC) results, an implementation program was scoped and planned which was then agreed to. The client started the implementation immediately after PoC finalization and delivery.

IT Governance

Governance concept and new supplier collaboration model

The client, an international automotive OEM, experienced a lack of controllability of one of their main suppliers for a point-of-sales retail system. The required KPIs were neither fully defined nor agreed, neither monitored nor tracked. Collaboration with the supplier was unsatisfactory and controls very limited.

Ginkgo Management Consulting was asked to develop a new collaboration model with the supplier including distinct KPIs (bonus/malus system applicable) and a corresponding governance model. The required collaboration processes and roles were defined, and a new organisational structure was created, including an implementation concept and a growth plan. The complete new collaboration model was tried out in an initial Europe-wide role-play workshop together with the client and the supplier. A set of real-life use cases was walked through with the future owners of defined roles.

After verification, the new governance concept was rolled out globally. It now serves as the basis for on-going successful collaboration between the two parties involved.

Governance concept and transition plan for leasing/financing system

A global player in the automotive industry intended to transform his heterogeneous and complex process and system landscape for automotive leasing and financing into a homogeneous European-wide solution. Hence, Ginkgo Management Consulting was hired to conceptualise the future IT operating model including roles, processes and organisation.

Within the concept phase Ginkgo Management Consulting realised an organizational model which aligned the vast number of involved business entities (both internal and external suppliers on- and offshore in India) and allowed an implementation of a homogeneous process and system landscape. Moreover, due to the new system landscape a European-wide retail bank branch with a common reporting platform and partner database could be established.

Thus, the operations efficiency climbed to a whole new level since manual processes were eliminated and automated processes allowed a cost-efficient growth.

Sourcing and Provider Management

Sourcing of IT infrastructure services

An automotive manufacturing company needed to renew its Outsourcing Contract for Infrastructure Operations encompassing 25 different sites in Japan. Ginkgo Management Consulting assessed requirements, designed the RFP process including a vast and precise service catalog, established a vendor evaluation method and negotiated the vendor contract on behalf of the client.

The vendor transition was successfully supported and audited. During the transition no service interruptions did occur while allowing the client to reduce operational costs significantly.

Harmonisation and consolidation of network- and communication service operations

A group-intern IT service provider needed the development of a group-wide target operating model and the establishment of a retained organisation. The consolidation of the provider landscape and harmonisation of the IT services as well as the support for the transition of a TK service strategy, especially for managed connectivity services were also major activities.

Due to an enormous cost savings time pressure the transition of identified measures had to be carried out very quickly and with measurable results. By doing this, the following measurable results were achieved: cost transparency across countries, reduced network cost to market price, consolidated contracts and suppliers.

Post merger global sourcing strategy and integration.

Our client was 7 years locked in a sole sourcing infrastructure relationship. The end of the sole sourcing contract was used to stabilise the IT operations.

Ginkgo was contracted to develop a sourcing strategy and multi provider management framework to assure future IT operations and end to end services with the applications team. Together with the client Ginkgo developed the sourcing strategy and multi vendor management framework. Subsequently Ginkgo was contracted to lead the implementation and operationalisation phase.

Instead of a “Big Bang” approach Ginkgo realised cost savings and operational efficiencies with the chosen multi vendor approach in line with the clients planning.

Project and Program Management

Turnaround management for SAP Template roll-out

The client in the manufacturing industry was challenged by a multi-module SAP template implementation. After a serious delay in schedule and a subsequent change in implementation partner, Ginkgo Management Consulting was engaged to perform a program management role.

The small, high-impact team was introduced as a managing Program Management Office (as opposed to a purely administrative one). The PMO drove and actively dealt with several ad-hoc workgroups to overcome the challenges, which were caused primarily by a lack of business process maturity and inadequate IT operations planning. Based on a short baselining assessment, the original “big bang” go-live date was still met, but with a change in the initial scope. The complete functionality was then realised in a second step two months after go-live.

Project management for after-sales SAP rollout and technical de-merger

The client in the truck and bus manufacturing industry was experiencing severe challenges during the implementation of SAP for its end-to-end after-sales business. In parallel to the ERP implementation, the reintegration of previously outsourced business functions and the full technical de-merger from the former parent company were part of the project scope. The project was carried out in an environment with three different nationalities of stakeholders and solution vendors and involved the replacement of dozens of legacy interfaces.

Ginkgo was called with the project already in delay during early stages with insufficient visibility to the management, to provide a managing project management office function (as opposed to a purely administrative one). The PMO was driving project and sub-project planning, the introduction and upholding of the group-wide project methodology, as well as the complete financial management for the project, and large parts of the communication to the steering committee and other business and IT stakeholders.

With the added transparency and a structured approach, a rescheduling of the project could be undertaken and a much tighter control of progress, risk and issue management  was established. Where needed, the PMO also managed parts of the requirements clarification as a bridge and facilitator between business, the in-house IT, and the IT vendors to actively resolve topics where progress was slow or halted due to issues.

Project management of transition to cloud for offsite backup of document management solution

As part of the multi-year plan to close down a number of its data centres, the client in the mining industry asked Ginkgo to manage a number of projects, including transition to cloud service for its document backup solution. The Ginkgo team worked together with the client’s architecture team to precisely define the project requirements and scope, leading to an RfP to identify a solution service provider.

The project itself was conducted by Ginkgo in three phases. In a first phase, a dedicated management link between the production environment and the software as a service (SaaS) provider’s data centre was set up, complying with the client’s internal security requirements and including the installation and set-up of new dedicated firewalls between the client and SaaS environments, for which Ginkgo managed a third-party provider for procuring and installing the hardware. The second phase consisted of the set-up of the remote monitoring, backup, and disaster recovery capabilities. In the third phase, the physical shipment of existing backups for their integration into the new remote backup environment was organised and executed, enabling the release of rack-space in the legacy data centre.

The resulting backup and DR environment constituted the foundation for the subsequent move of the production environment into the cloud, releasing the primary legacy data centre.

Project management corporate audit findings elimination

The client in the financial service industry was challenged with an top-level Corporate Audit review about his new implemented and first outsourced Banking Platform system. Owing to the pressure of the global financial crisis, the client was forced to restructure and consolidate his former payment transaction solutions which results in a lack of plan and method.

Ginkgo Management Consulting was trusted partner to eliminate all identified and time sensitive findings in the areas of  Service Level Agreements, IT Security, IT-Operations, Quality- and Supplier Management. Starting with a Management and Supplier awareness campaign, Ginkgo Management Consultants steered several transnational workgroups in an integrated manner to ensure the elimination of the audit findings and ensure project success.

All high risk findings were eliminated on time and sustaining processes were implemented for enduring quality.

Global rollout of a group-wide standardised credit application with simultaneous software enhancement

The objective of the project was to roll out an enterprise rating application for an international financial services company in approximately 40 countries. In addition to project management of the rollout, Ginkgo Management Consulting was challenged to limit the number of local “island solutions”, prevent further costs and prepare for the digital future.

The agile software development was managed taking into account preparation of a multi-tier application for the “Next Generation” – implying feature-rich cross-platform web applications. Furthermore, project management had to bundle and coordinate many line function activities, resources and external providers. Finally a pull-forward effect was created which achieved the goals years before the initial project planning.

The coordinated global/regional approach as opposed to individual solutions also reduced group expenses. In addition, the new application-wide comparability across countries boosted efficiency.

Pre- and post-merger automotive banking

Our client, a leading German automotive corporation, acquired an automotive bank in one of its mid-size markets to improve their strategic position by increasing market share and extending their product portfolio of automotive credit and dealer financing. Within four months between signing and closing, redundant infrastructure had to be installed in the new locations, complex migration of contract and accounting data had to be prepared, and systems for the new banking business had to be built up – ensuring business continuity at day one under the restrictions of antitrust law.

Ginkgo was given the mandate to support the local IT lead in the IT project management function and to make sure that the critical IT implementations would be successful. Ginkgo Management Consulting supported the project within the post-merger integration to ensure on-going system integrations, implementation and migration to new banking systems and to fulfil banking infrastructure requirements by realizing a data centre consolidation concept.

Besides pure project management, Ginkgo strengthened and enabled the local IT team to handle the extended and more complex business requirements in the future resulting from the successfully acquired automotive bank.


Restructuring of IT organisation

A successful pharmaceutical firm had radically revised its strategic direction, developing from a historically grown conglomeration of individual regional companies into a global corporation with distinct business units. Information technology was confronted with this fundamental change and compelled to adjust.

Ginkgo Management Consulting was asked to develop a concept for a new operating and governance model. Based on an assessment phase, a new organization was developed with a specific focus on the alignment between business and IT and project portfolio governance.

The implementation took less than 10 weeks and was revisited after six months. One main result was a high degree of business satisfaction with IT. The client considered this the most successful outcome of the project.

Development of concept and realisation of IT shared services centre for APAC region

Ginkgo Management Consulting conceptualised the IT shared services centre for the APAC region of a leading automotive manufacturing company, supporting the initial set-up as well as the service transition from more than 20 legal entities in Asia Pacific. The main value drivers of the concept were standardisation, centralisation and modernisation of IT services.

While significantly improving and professionalizing service quality, the financial benefit case achieved was substantial. One key success factor was the successful establishment of an IT service delivery model that integrated outsourcing, out-tasking and in-house service delivery.

Re-organisation of an IT division in a PMI context in the oil and gas industry

In the context of a Post-Merger-Integration Program (the client had acquired a formerly state owned Oil & Gas company) multiple projects were set for execution also in the IT Division. Besides quick win aspects and process harmonization efforts between the old and new entities we were asked how to organizationally harmonize and synergize the IT organizations of the merged companies.

Top level criteria for a re-organization was aligned with management (synergies of new available locations, IT service and process quality, process criticality, etc.) and an in depth qualitative and quantitative process and resource assessment was done. A standard catalogue of IT services, processes and roles was set as basis to compare assessment results. Top down a target IT organization was drafted and all assessed IT activities were sorted into it.

As a result the new organization was formed with a new distribution of activities between locations. This formed a template and baseline for implementation in which a re-structuring and knowledge transfer program was launched and executed successfully.

Assessments and Audits

Risk mitigation

Ginkgo’s client was awarded a new IT service contract for comprehensive ERP-related services. During the transition from the previous service provider, it was recognized that independent risk management was required to safeguard this extremely critical project.

Applying Ginkgo’s Transition Risk Assessment and Management Method, the project was able to identify and initiate optimization requirements. The transition was performed without any service interruptions and in line with the original time plan.

Service Processes

Process optimisation for incident management processes

The recently established shared services centre of an international company group provided all infrastructure and application-related services on a global level. Improvement in incident management was targeted to ensure stability and interruption-free service provisioning.

Ginkgo supported the development of a comprehensive improvement concept that included specification of processes and roles, automated monitoring enabling early detection, and policies for pre-emptive maintenance of service components. The concept was realized over a period of six months and delivered significantly positive results.

IT service process framework

The globally operating retail group was facing a challenge to integrate the service processes of various service providers and internal departments across countries and continents. One core finding of an initial assessment was that the service processes and role models did not follow a commonly agreed model.

Ginkgo helped define a standardized process framework for all main processes based on ITIL, and also initiated contractual adjustments with external partners. Additionally, a governance and reporting framework was designed to enable continuous improvement during operations.

Enterprise retention management process model development

In the course of implementing an enterprise retention management strategy Ginkgo developed the corresponding concept and process model to deploy the concept with an global automotive OEM. Processes for the provisioning and adoption of the retention mgmt. policy, the application by the employees in day-to-day business as well as processes for support and consulting for ERM-responsibles were designed and agreed to. Roles & responsibilities were defined along the processes including a central “Policy Management Office” to own, foster and further develop the retention policy. The client implemented the concept, ERM-policy and processes successfully based on the project results.

Customer care satisfaction optimisation

An international telco provider experienced decreasing Customer Satisfaction Index and Transactional Net Promoter Score values for its customer services, especially for new mobile clients (new customer phase). Ginkgo Management Consulting was asked to analyse the root causes and design the necessary actions to optimize customer satisfaction.

Due to the fact that customer service operation (call centre and complaint management) had been fully outsourced, the analysis was planned and executed on site at the customer service provider. Over a defined timespan, a dedicated team of customer care representatives documented and classified the shortcomings during client contact that incurred dissatisfaction on the part of the customers. Additional data was gathered from team manager coaching and silent monitoring of calls. An analysis of the data gathered clearly showed lapses on both the client and the supplier sides leading to customer dissatisfaction.

In a series of joint workshops facilitated by Ginkgo, required measures were identified, planned and prioritised for execution. Tracking of the implementation of measures and related customer satisfaction KPIs was established and monitored. The success of the counter-measures taken was determined shortly thereafter.

Change Management

Change management and training re-launch to comply with the go-live date

The client in the manufacturing industry blocked the go-live with a multi-module SAP template implementation because of a serious delay in training. Ginkgo’s due diligence revealed an unrealistic training schedule, a lack of availability of critical training material and qualified trainers, and, moreover, a delay in change management and communication measures four months before the planned go-live.

Ginkgo managed to define the training scope and priorities with the business side to comply with the go-live date that had initially been planned and adapted the change management and training approach. Twenty additional coaches were brought in to prepare and run all training activities in the required languages and production shifts. To comply with the go-live date, substantial training and change management activities were postponed and delivered after go-live until more than year after go-live (approx. 1/3 pre-go live and 2/3 post-go live).

The overall success in sticking to the go-live date was rated a great success by the client, as the go-live date had been seen as impossible at the start of the engagement.

Change management for DMS retail template for a compliant and standardised roll-out

The client in the automotive industry intended to harmonize the retail dealer management systems it deployed on an international level. In an initial step four global key suppliers were selected. In the course of the long-term program 22 target markets started local implementation projects to harmonise and implement standard retail processes in sales and aftersales on the importer and retail levels.

As a key prerequisite for this approach Ginkgo Management Consulting developed a change management concept that served as a blueprint for all markets to initiate change projects as part of the DMS implementation projects. The blueprint consists of client-specific change management methods and separate toolboxes for all project phases from initiation to project closure, enabling local organisations to ramp up, organize and manage all relevant change processes in their country organisations as well as independent dealerships. With its highly specialized team, Ginkgo Management Consulting developed all relevant material and played a key role in gaining international acceptance for the overall approach and related material from key markets and top management.

The change management concept was successfully tested in two markets; at this point it serves as the master book to handle change in ten further markets. As the final deliverable, central processes and an organisational charter were developed to ensure on-going updating of the change management toolbox after each application/roll-out project.