Business transformation post consolidation

25 October 2021

There’s been a period of consolidation within the managing agent sector recently, one which can often lead to challenges as multiple teams, systems and processes inevitably come together under one roof.

In addition to challenges around data migration (click here for 6 steps on effective data migration), the new enlarged organisation will have new people, different systems and alternative processes to harmonise.

Often the smaller entity will be absorbed by the larger, following the existing processes and migrating systems. But such a change can be an opportunity to review and streamline all existing approaches, ensuring the newly enlarged entity’s as efficient as possible and able to make future acquisitions with a clear roadmap for further consolidation.

When it comes to reviewing your teams and methods, we would suggest breaking the task down into three core components. All activity undertaken by your teams are influenced by the people, the processes and the technology.


People

Often with a merger or acquisition there are opportunities for efficiency gains, meaning a reduction in the overall headcount. However when reviewing the team, care should be taken to design the new team structure, roles and responsibilities. Some of your existing team may need additional support or training to take on extra duties. Where a member of the team previously had multiple responsibilities there may be scope to have specialists in key roles covering the larger tasks. The existing teams may already have sufficient capacity to take on some of the duties from the newly acquired business.

As well as reviewing the team from a team structure and responsibilities lens, care should be taken to ensure any changes are properly discussed and the teams consulted, with advice from a suitable HR professional sought to ensure compliance with regulatory considerations.

Process

Alongside the review of the teams, a review of the processes may find further efficiency gains. Ensuring processes are fit for purpose and should include the appropriate checks to prevent and detect errors. By mapping the existing processes of both your existing team, and the target company, you can identify strengths and weaknesses of the current approaches and ensure best practice is adopted in future. Once the updated processes are agreed, these should be documented to allow future training and be kept under regular review.

Technology

The final aspect’s technology. The processes undertaken and by whom is closely linked to the People and Process review, when looking at the detailed process maps, gaps in technology can often be identified. Where parts of the process are excessively manual, errors and mistakes can easily creep in, however by looking for better system based solutions, efficiency and accuracy gains can be obtained.

Change management

Whilst reviewing and implementing changes to the new team, you should not overlook the impact of change itself on team members. Change can be unsettling for some, and you can often find key members of the team may be reluctant to changing the process, particularly if they were responsible for developing that approach in the first place. Ensuring good use of communications with the team and listening to their suggestions and advice helps ensure buy-in to the new methods that you decide on.

Here at Fortus we have helped clients review their finance teams following acquisitions, as well as a for efficiency and performance reasons, working with clients across various sectors, we can help introduce best practice to your finance team.

More