GLOBAL PROFESSIONAL SERVICES FIRM

Marketing Work Management

The Challenge

A global professional services firm needed to streamline critical marketing & sales processes.

The goal was to bring three distinct shared services within the marketing & sales organization under one technological umbrella, allowing them to combine processes, improve hand-offs and efficiencies, and effectively balance workload across teams. This would all be accomplished while increasing visibility into capacity and demand, in order to forecast across several groups of geographically diverse resource pools.

To do this, the client required an advisor that could evaluate their end-to-end processes, understand the various business drivers and requirements, and support the identification and implementation of a tool that could bring to bear the necessary resource planning and workflow capabilities needed by the organization.

Each of the three groups also came with their own legacy systems that their processes and workflows had been adapted to, rather than the other way around. To make the vision a reality, they would need to identify what parts of their respective workflows were truly part of the value chain. All of this would be a precursor to determining what features and capabilities of legacy systems needed to be migrated, what would need to be adapted to reflect the ideal state, and what could be deprecated as the teams moved forward with new, enabling technology.

The Approach

LeapPoint modernized and standardized business processes across multiple departments and teams by analyzing their workflows to identify key processes. Existing processes were transitioned from Excel and Google to Workfront, and real-time management reports and dashboards were provided to support decision making.

To make the initiative more manageable, LeapPoint conducted a collaborative discovery session for all three groups within the organization but staggered the design and implementation period. This approach was built around the premise of a phased roll-out, each with hard deadlines. While efficient, it required exceptional project management and risk mitigation to ensure everything stayed on track.

To help ensure things stayed on schedule, LeapPoint built a comprehensive project plan for the entire initiative, helping to create accountability across teams as the project progressed through the phased design and implementations.

Each group’s system implementation was designed to partition much of their respective workflows and core capabilities from one another.

This allowed for greater flexibility in customizing features and functions to stakeholder needs without adversely impacting one of the other two groups. For those system objects that impacted other groups—call them: ”global settings”—LeapPoint identified the variations in requirements and developed mitigating actions to satisfy any potential gaps in requirements.

The first group in the phased implementation was a global sales support function providing remote support to territories across the world and drawing on resource pools in six different time zones.

The second group provided strategic marketing & sales support to large accounts. Using teams in both the U.S. and India, they provided support for both business development and account management.

The third and final group in the implementation was responsible for customer relationship management and used offshore resources to support account maintenance, system administration, and reporting.

The importance of change control

A critical component of any system implementation, post-go-live, is a mechanism for ensuring global settings are agreed upon and maintained or updated in a fair and equitable manner. One of LeapPoint’s final deliverables for this client was an assessment and recommendation of a change control process, control board, and pertinent Workfront objects that should fall under the purview of the change request process.

The recommendations were implemented as soon as the third group launched. Since that time, the change control board has helped ensure consistency and continuity of both the Workfront experience and all applicable data elements and reports for each of the three groups. The client has made the change control process a routine part of administering the application which has helped to ensure the success of the initiative for several years after the rollout and will continue to do so for several years to come.

The Outcome

The organization has been operating with Workfront since 2015 and each function has fully migrated its end-to-end process management to the system, from project intake to management and execution.

Resource management

Since launch, the organization has moved to an environment where they manage resources based on capacity, rather than how many “projects” a person has. It’s led to efficiency gains of nearly 30% in some departments. Additionally, each of the teams was able to greatly streamline their processes, eliminating or automating handoffs that would otherwise create unnecessary work. The improved insight into capacity and demand forecasting has also allowed teams to balance workload across resources and improve utilization by an average of nearly 20%.

Project performance

Capturing more detailed data about project performance has enabled the teams to appropriately benchmark their work, develop targets, and drive staff toward applicable performance goals. Within the first six months of launching Workfront, average project time fell by nearly 45% as workers could more easily see where they were spending time and manage leadership expectations.

Financial

Workfront also provided leadership the ability to assess project cost at a more granular level, creating the opportunity to shift work from high-cost resources to lower-cost ones. Over time, as responsibilities and functions were reallocated, the client saw a 15% decrease in average project cost due to labor arbitrage opportunities.

Improved utilization: 0%
A decrease in turnaround: 0%
Decrease in labor cost: 0%

People

  • Improved utilization
  • Balanced workload
  • Demand and capacity forecasting

Process

  • Streamlined processes across the organization
  • Enabled digital collaboration
  • Provided work transparency

Technology

  • Configured Workfront for three separate teams
  • Eliminated five separate legacy systems
  • Deployed a centralized system to intake projects