Should digital transformation be top-down or bottom-up?
Takeda wanted to explore a hot topic for many organizations: how to execute digital transformation.
Takeda, headquartered in Japan, is a leading global biopharmaceutical company, one of the largest in Asia and among the top 15 globally by revenue.
Takeda’s global CFO, Costa Saroukos, shaped the vision for finance in which employees “deliver insights and drive value for patients.” He described the priorities as “partnering with the business to reallocate resources so we can deliver on our financial commitments and drive efficiencies across the organization through data and automation.”
Following its sizeable acquisition of, and subsequent integration with, Shire Pharmaceuticals in 2018, Takeda needed to rapidly accelerate its digital transformation. This is a focus that is reflected in its Corporate Philosophy, in which a key imperative is “unleashing the power of data and digital.”
Takeda Business Solutions (TBS) is a key business partner and enabler of Takeda’s finance vision. It provides simplified and innovative solutions across finance, procurement and human resources. The value TBS creates is freeing up time, so employees can focus on operations that better serve patients. TBS does so with a clear focus on creating exceptional people experiences where its stakeholders feel supported and confident in its solutions.
Costa Saroukos and the newly appointed Senior VP & Global Head of TBS, Sanjay Patel, shared a vision of fostering a culture of digital literacy and citizen-driven innovation that would enable Takeda to deliver on its commitments. To realize this vision, TBS partnered with IT to build an innovation hub to introduce digital solutions, artificial intelligence, robotics, automation and analytics.
This emerging focus on data and being digital-first culminated in an award-winning application – CFOInUrpocket™, a global finance reporting and analytics platform that gives every relevant employee direct access to data and analytical tools via their laptop, smartphone or tablet. And rather than follow the industry trend of outsourcing, the solution was developed leveraging in-house capabilities.
Embarking on that value creation journey, Patel chose an unconventional approach to leapfrog the digital journey. He used a considered balance of top-down classic approach, implementing and embedding the latest technologies and a less traditional bottom-up approach, socializing and democratizing technology throughout the organization. The outcome was surprising.
The focus on being digital-first generated results quickly. A global finance reporting and analytics application was built to give relevant employees direct access to data.