Outsource Magazine Issue 33 - (Page 113)

THE BACK END INSIDE SOURCE The voice from the shadows of the outsourcing space… Run For Their Lives! A heartwarming tale reaches me from a former colleague in the north of England who earlier this year was working to rectify a sourcing arrangement that was going, shall we say, somewhat less successfully than all parties had hoped at its inception. Disagreements were myriad, operational difficulties increasing and discontent on both the customer and supplier sides reaching intolerable proportions. Over a series of protracted and at times incendiary meetings, a new framework for the relationship had been tortuously wrangled into being but one key sticking point remained in the form of a particular penalty clause which the supplier viewed as being unnecessarily draconian. To add fuel to the fire, the customer let it be known towards the end of one especially arduous week of negotiations that an agreement had to be reached by the following Monday as the organisation needed to press on with a restructuring which had an impact upon the future scope of the activities being outsourced. Things appeared to be going happily – comparatively speaking – but the aforementioned sticking point remained adhesive in the extreme, and first Friday, then Saturday (no doubt to the great joy of those involved in the discussions) came and went with no sign of the obstacle being removed. On the Saturday, the lead on the customer side became increasingly frantic – desperate, even, to get this agreement in place by the end of the day; my acquaintance describes how this normally placid and well-balanced fellow lost his temper on a number of occasions, and this was seen by those present as being a sign of the immense pressure he was under to finish the process ahead of the deadline given by his bosses within the customer organisation. However, there was another cause… On the Sunday the parties met once again for what they hoped would be the final time – all those present by now heartily sick and tired of each other, the renegotiation process and the whole darn deal. Met, that is, without the lead mentioned above, whose presence was deemed critical yet who didn’t arrive for a couple of hours after the start of discussions. And when he did so… All those present were somewhat astonished to see the fellow arrive, breathless and obviously exhausted – and dressed as a very well-known cartoon duck, sans the headpiece… The gentleman in question had committed to participating in a local charity fun run, raising funds for cancer research having lost his mother quite recently, and had come straight from the finish line to the meeting under orders from above. His arrival, apparently, was greeted first with hilarity and then a kind of sober respect, as those present contemplated matters of greater and more mortal consequence than an outsourcing agreement. Shortly after lunchtime (at which point he was able – perhaps mercifully – to depart for a hasty shower) the agreement was finally concluded, and my former colleague maintains that the lead’s arrival and obvious determination to do the right thing in life prompted both sides to come to an agreement. While I will keep his anonymity here, I salute him, and urge readers to do the same by contributing to the cause for which he had spent so much effort: you can find out more about donating to Marie Curie Cancer Care at www.mariecurie.co.uk – and as always you can send me your industry anecdotes and insider gossip to insidesource. outsource@gmail.com... “It is only the enlightened ruler and the wise general who will use the highest intelligence of the army for the purposes of spying, and thereby they achieve great results.” – Sun Tzu www.outsourcemagazine.co.uk ●●● ● 113 http://www.mariecurie.co.uk http://www.outsourcemagazine.co.uk

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Outsource Magazine Issue 33

Keeping in Touch
Shaji Farooq
Manoeuvre the Maze of Cloud Confusion
E-Invoicing: Where Now and Where Next?
Rick Simmonds
Only Strong Leadership and Governance Can Deliver High Performance
A Healthy Development
Getting to We: Time for a New Negotiating Paradigm
NOA Round-Up
To Outsource or Not to Outsource
Big Data Hits HR
John Willmott
Show Us The Money!
GBS: a Game-Changer for Finance
Neil Pratley
Go East
The Talent Challenge
Top Ten
NelsonHall Round-Up
Online Round-Up
The Deal Doctor
Inside Source
The Last Word

Outsource Magazine Issue 33