Archive for the ‘HRO provider partnerships’ category

The Intricate World of HRO Provider Partnerships

October 4, 2011

It is uncommon to see a multi-process HR outsourcing (MPHRO) provider with a go-it-alone strategy.  Beyond the services a particular MPHRO service provider considers core, you will usually find other select HRO vendors. The option to operate in a networked HRO supply chain environment can be a valuable choice.  Some benefits include:

  • Providing clients with the option of selected best-of-breed software applications with the primary provider managing the interfaces and integrations under one contract
  • Investing in what the MPHRO vendor does best and offering a wider range of service options through partnerships
  • Entering new geographies faster with less investment, an option especially seen in knitting together global payroll and increasingly in multi-country RPO
  • Buying time to develop more robust internal offerings
  • Creating a pool of potential investments or M&A targets.

This week, NorthgateArinso (NGA) and Workday announced a partnership to bring multi-country payroll to the Workday cloud.  Workday 16 customers will have the option to access NGA’s payroll processing capabilities in 51 countries through NGA’s new euHReka Inclusion Framework.

Workday, launched in 2006, is one of the first and largest start-ups to provide a SaaS-only HR ERP. Revenues are estimated to be  ~$150m this year with ~210 customers, most in the mid-market, but some are large market clients with 55k to 100k employees.  Still U.S.-centric in revenues and clients, Workday is expanding into the U.K. and Canada and plans to expand further in Europe in 2012. Workday is in a fast growth mode, targeting a 100% increase in revenues for 2012. It is busy selling, implementing new clients, and building out a full suite of HR and financial cloud-based ERP services. In the meantime, it can offer clients greater options via its partner network. In addition to NGA, other partners for multi-country payroll include ADP, Patersons, and SafeGuard World International.

Another example comes from Ceridian, which is expanding its investment and service partnership with Dayforce. The two have been partnering since 2009 to offer InView, a platform SaaS solution that blends Ceridian’s payroll, human resources, and benefits administration offerings with Dayforce’s workforce management software application. The expanded InView HR and Self-Service is to be released in 4Q 2011 and new payroll functionality is on track for 1Q 2012.

InView is starting out quickly as a successful partnership. Ceridian set a target of 300 clients for the first year and exceeded that number in six months. As more clients go live, the partnership will have to carefully balance service with growth to ensure long-term success.

HRO vendor partnerships are not always successful and must be carefully structured and managed, especially when the vendor partners may well compete with one another in some markets or services. With care, this can be a strategy with benefits for clients and the HRO vendor partners.

Linda Merritt, Research Analyst, HRO, NelsonHall

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Learning BPO Market Morphing by M&As, Partnerships and Organics to Meet Evolving Client Needs

November 11, 2010

Per the findings from NelsonHall’s recently published “Targeting Learning BPO” report, we saw only a modest growth rate of 2.5 percent in this HRO segment in 2009 – 2010, but predict a global compound average annual growth rate of 8.4 percent through our 2014 forecast period. So what’s driving this growth from the buy-side, and how are providers responding?

Buyers’ top driver for learning BPO (LBPO) remains reducing the cost of the learning function, followed by increasing the effectiveness and improving the quality of learning for employees. Other drivers include gaining a better return on the learning investment, right-time/right-level access to specialist trainers, obtaining a well-defined process from a provider with the ability to deliver higher quality, aligning learning with strategic objectives, contract flexibility and utilizing cutting-edge technologies for learning services delivery.

To meet these buyer needs, providers must step up their game in a range of areas including the ability to manage a global network of delivery suppliers, and providing access to the technologies required to effectively deliver and manage all aspects of the learning function via learning management systems, Web 2.0., virtual instructor-led training, e-learning, m-learning, virtual world technologies, gaming and learning analytics. Providers also need to have global learning capabilities across all four learning towers: Learning Administration, Content Development, Learning Delivery and Technology.

LBPO providers are taking a variety of paths to address these evolving, and in cases daunting, buyer requirements. Some, including Raytheon Professional Services, Expertus, Edvantage Group and RWD, are growing organically, with new service offerings including new technology, content and geographic delivery capabilities. Acquisitions and partnerships are also occurring.

2010 acquisitions in the LBPO space include:

  • Kenexa’s acquisition of The Centre for High Performance Development to strengthen leadership develop and management training
  • Talent2’s purchase of Origin HR and Sugar International to expand vocational training capabilities
  • General Physics’ acquisition of Marton House to strengthen e-learning content development in the U.K., and its purchase of PerformTech to strengthen learning services for the U.S. government

 And 2010 LBPO partnerships include:

  • NIIT and SENA to provide learning services in Colombia
  • Edvantage Group and Mediapharm to offer a pharma online portal

Bottom line is, for the LBPO market to grow and prosper, it is all about meeting client’s learning needs: delivering what they need, where they need it, when they need it and how they need it. Organic is great, but not always feasible, and not necessarily always the best option for the involved parties. Thus, I beleive we will continue to see more acquisitions, and even more partnerships, in the LBPO space in the next 12 months.

Gary Bragar, Lead HRO Analyst, NelsonHall

HRO is Never Static or Still

October 12, 2010

During every stage of the economic lifecycle, HRO service providers are doing something to either anticipate or react to changes in the marketplace and client needs while simultaneously striving to achieve strategic goals. This week I wrap-up NelsonHall’s review of 3Q 2010 HRO activity with a look at what’s new in offerings, partnerships and acquisitions.

One way to quickly expand a service line or fill-in gaps is to partner with a provider that is already offering the service or operating in the target geography. Last quarter was most active for RPO. Those announcing new RPO-related partnerships included Alexander Mann Solutions (AMS), Kelly Services, Kenexa, Pinstripe and The RightThing. Notably, two of the partnerships were to continue to expand RPO services internationally in the Asia Pacific region, with AMS adding reach into India and Kelly in Vietnam.

A more committed path to rounding out or adding new services is to buy it. Making small to large acquisitions is another constant in the world of HRO as players define and redefine their portfolios. In addition to the close of the three game changing major acquisitions in the benefits community (ADP/Workscape, ACS/ExcellerateHRO, and Aon/Hewitt), other folks were also making deals. For example, Mercer acquired IPA and ORC, and Xafinity bought PwC’s pension consulting and administration business in the U.K. Further, Randstad continued its acquisitive ways, this time outside of Europe, with its planned acquisition of FujiStaff in Japan.

Health and welfare (H&W) outsourcing used to be limited to the U.S., and that will remain the major market. But no matter how health insurance and care is funded, H&W concerns are growing globally. In the U.S., Fidelity is partnering with RedBrick Health to offer its clients wellness services, and in the U.K., Capita is acquiring FirstAssist Services to add to its health service offerings.

Finally, if you cannot find what you want in the marketplace, you can build or expand it yourself. Ceridian wants to truly offer a new line of BPO services and has announced it is ready to consult, build and manage the health insurance exchanges that some states will need in a couple of years as part of the U.S. health care reform program. 

Most announcements of “new offerings” are incremental additions. For example, Hewitt is adding Micromedex medical reference information to its advocacy service offering. You can also simply package what you have and call it new. Aditro has done that with a standardized set of payroll services that include preset services levels and implementation process to make a lower cost bundled option.

Yet another variation blends supply chain partnerships with building it yourself to make a new service offering. Take a SaaS HR service from Oracle or Sap and wrap in value added enhancements and services additions and, voila, you have a new HRO service platform. Mercer introduced its Human Capital Direct that uses PeopleClick Authoria’s talent management suite as the core, surrounded by Mercer’s consulting, tools and methodologies such as decision support, competency models and analytics.

In HRO, somebody is always doing something. What have you done lately?

Linda Merritt, Research Director, HRO, NelsonHall

RPO, MSP and Continent Labor Contracts Gaining Ground

September 10, 2010

In my April 16 blog “An RPO and MSP Combo: the Best of Both Worlds,” I wrote about the value of workforce solutions that are rooted in both RPO and Managed Service Provider (MSP) services to meet the dynamic and evolving needs for both contingent and permanent employee hiring. We’re now seeing an increasing number of these types of contracts being inked, and some providers are partnering to gain the breadth of offerings needed to win to-be-awarded deals.

Recently awarded contracts include:

• SourceRight Solutions’ – originally an RPO provider – multi-year deal with Siemens for provision of contingent labor procurement programs in the U.S.

• An MSP and RPO agreement between AMN Healthcare and Hendrick Medical Center

• Alexander Mann Solutions’ three-year recruitment, contingent workforce and employer branding contract in the U.K. with aerospace and defense engineering firm Cobham

Recent partnerships and M&As for the RPO/MSP combo include:

• The RightThing with ZeroChaos to provide contingent labor services alongside RPO. The RightThing, which was always considered a pureplay RPO provider, partnered with ZeroChaos to enable it to provide a broader range of recruitment solutions in today’s moving-target hiring marketplace

• AMN Healthcare acquiried Medfinders for its clinical workforce managed services program

• SourceRight Solutions and Hays, per their strategic alliance announced in 1Q10, launched WorldSource, a new service offering to manage and integrate global RPO and MSP programs. (And SourceRight Solutions also further expanded its own MSP offering)

The primary driver of escalating contract and partnership activity in this HRO segment is clear: as companies remain cautious due to continued low consumer confidence and ongoing market uncertainty, they are hiring more temporary employees and utilizing more contingent workforces than on-boarding new full-time hires. And let’s not forget buyers’ increasing desire to keep their portfolio of service providers to a minimum, particularly when in the same service line.   

The bottom line is that vendors and buyers both win with the right workforce combination that best meets clients’ organizational objectives. I believe we will continue to see additional pureplay RPO specialists looking to partner to provide MSP and contingent workforce solutions to meet continued demand. And while contingent workforce solutions can be used in any industry, I believe the nature of seasonal demand and spikes in volumes will drive more of these types of contracts in healthcare, pharma, manufacturing, retail, technology and defense.

Gary Bragar, Senior HR Outsourcing Analyst, NelsonHall

Hays and SourceRight Solutions: A Different and “Right Time” Global Recruitment Alliance

March 18, 2010

On March 16, 2010, Hays plc and SourceRight Solutions announced a strategic alliance to offer global talent acquisition solutions. The two vendors will provide customized recruiting services to clients around the world, including in the U.S., Canada, Europe, Middle East and Asia. Over the past couple of years other partnerships have been formed to offer global recruiting solutions including: Pinstripe and OchreHouse, The RightThing and Alexander Mann Solutions, and KellyOCG and IBM. So what makes the Hays/SourceRight alliance different from the rest of these partnerships?

This alliance is similar in that recruiters can be provided in-country, but Hays and SourceRight Solutions are also offering solutions that will encompass:

•  Recruitment process outsourcing (RPO)

•  Managed service programs

•  Professional contingent workforce services

Hays and SourceRight will tailor recruitment solutions that can include any combination of the above, including by industry and geography, and which can be delivered by dedicated account teams with 4,500 recruiters around the world.

Further, this more highly customized and comprehensive recruitment services alliance may be coming to market at just the right time; during the recession, permanent recruiting has been largely on hold and many buy-side organizations have been utilizing temporary hires and contingent workforces due to uncertainty of their business outlook. Tailored, multiple option recruiting solutions should open many doors between Hays/SourceRight and buyers looking for a combination of permanent placement and temporary staffing assistance from the equivalent of one provider across geographies. 

I continue to believe – as I wrote in my 2007 and 2009 global RPO market analysis reports – that global presence and the ability to partner to provide global recruiting services are critical success factors for providers in the talent acquisition space. While the global recession, which resulted in staff reductions and temporary hiring freezes, has somewhat impeded the uptake, I strongly believe the time is right for a buy-side adoption increase, especially for highly tailored, comprehensive recruitment solutions.

Gary Bragar, Lead HRO Analyst, NelsonHall