Innovate, streamline, transform
It’s not always easy to change how a successful 150-year-old multinational operates. Yet when German pharmaceuticals and chemicals giant Bayer asked EY for help in doing just that, we were excited to take on the challenge.
Bayer wanted to streamline its finance and accounting functions, which were handled across as many as 40 locations globally. “The functions weren’t cost-effective and had significant room for improvement,” says EY Global Client Service Partner Gerd Stuerz. “So Bayer talked to us about what a future shared services center would look like.” EY began helping the client consolidate these functions before moving them to a single global shared services center that is currently being built in Manila.
“In winning projects such as this, one big differentiator is our high degree of global integration, which allows us to bring in professionals from all over the world,” says Gerd. “Another differentiator is our independence — we advise on shared services centers but don’t operate them, so we aren’t biased. For example, more than 35 EY professionals from the Philippines are working in our Pittsburgh office to smooth the Bayer transition. Later, they will continue to work in the Manila shared services center for a while before transitioning out. Bayer will then run the center as a stand-alone operation.”
Gerd cites our commitment to exceptional client service as a key factor in the success of the project. For instance, he says, “In response to requests for ad-hoc support in various countries, we created a rapid response team of professionals around the world who are fully briefed and on-call to fly anywhere they’re needed.”