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Creating Global Shared Services: Lessons from Reuters

Mary C. Lacity, Jim Fox


Creating shared services requires a coordinated integration of four change programs: business process redesign (BPR), organizational redesign, sourcing redesign, and technology enablement. If managed properly, shared services reduce costs, improve services, and can even generate revenues. However, surveys show that many executives fail to achieve the promised results. In this article, we present the lessons Reuters learned during a five-year journey to create global shared services within its finance organization. The lessons highlight how to: (1) Adopt the right transformation approach; (2) Identify processes for shared services by analyzing the costs, attributes, and readiness of process activities; and (3) Get business unit clients and internal staff to cooperate and embrace the shared services initiative.

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ISSN 1540-1960