Case Studies: What Success Looks Like

Fortune 500 Company Expands Digital Innovation through “Global Insource Center”

The Challenge

A US-based global provider of B2B energy and environmental technology and services determined that innovation in digital technology was core to their corporate strategy. However, with low unemployment, finding people with the right IT skills in the US was expensive and sometimes impossible. To address the talent gap, the Company decided to build a technology innovation center in Bangalore, India, where an extensive pool of highly-skilled technical people could be hired, developed, and retained while keeping costs in line with budget. The Company’s solution was to extend their local in-house strengths and build a Global Insourcing Center (GIC), a trending model that benefits US companies tactically and strategically.

A Better Way to Find the Right Fit

The Company engaged SMC Squared and together, using its proprietary Strategic Assessment Model (SAM), designed a customized approach to assess the current IT talent strategies and project future development needs.

SMC Squared recommended Bangalore, India as the site for the Company’s GIC. With research as its core strength, the Company independently confirmed this recommendation. Other locations under consideration included Philippines, Vietnam, China, and Poland. The research was clear: the best fit was Bangalore, India. Known as the Silicon Valley of India, this location has approximately 1.5 million information technology (IT) workers.

Partnering with the Company, SMC Squared brought over 40 years of combined experience in creating global IT teams to build a GIC in Bangalore. Through their deep expertise from living and working in both the US and India, SMC Squared was uniquely positioned to help the Company reduce start-up costs and execution risk.

  • Recruited and retained nearly 1,500 employees in Bangalore
  • Launched and led Target’s highly successful GIC with an ex-pat executive leader
  • Developed productivity focused Local/Global methodology
  • Grew multiple client GICs in Bangalore
  • Named 2016 Demandware (Salesforce Commerce Cloud) Global Delivery Partner of the Year, recognizing delivery excellence

As part of the Company’s GIC implementation, SMC Squared recruited and hired an experienced Managing Director in India who had over 18 years of IT experience, including a background of building multiple GICs for US firms. After working with the Company to assess talent requirements, SMC Squared tailored a hiring strategy to build a “right-sized” team aligned with HR department processes, skills-based leveling, and other hiring criteria. This established the foundation for how the Company’s India IT entity would perform and succeed, using SMC Squared’s experience in leading global teams as a cornerstone.

Turning a Plan into Reality

Working closely with the Company’s US IT leaders, SMC Squared provided US enablement services which included an onsite client director. US enablement ensured the Company’s business objectives were met through successful collaboration between the US-based (local) and India (global) teams. The client director identifies opportunities as well as risks and was provided as a non-billable service by SMC Squared.

The Company and SMC Squared chose a co-development model to enhance the productivity of the center. Co-development, very different from the staff augmentation model that is typically used in IT services, leverages a global development mindset that can work under Agile, DevOps, and traditional methodologies.

Globally, the Company benefited from collaborative estimation and planning. The India GIC owns detailed design, development, and testing. The collaborative local/global model allows for more accurate estimation, effective project management, and the benefits of global delivery, top-talent teams to meet business demand.

With SMC Squared expertise the Company’s GIC uses a recommended team structure (1:4:8/leader, mentor, doer) that’s ideal for sustainability. This model works best when there is strong teamwork and regular collaboration so that the US-based and India-based employees truly become “One Team.” Each team member, regardless of geography, is held accountable for an FTE of work – measured in story points and team velocity.

The Roadmap for Successfully Ramping to Scale

SMC Squared’s GIC model leverages an employee-centric team with an expert US enablement program for companies who want help to build and operationalize an India-based entity but may not already have offices and infrastructure in India. At the end of three years, the Company has a highly-productive, cost-effective global IT talent to complement the Company’s local teams.

SMC Squared’s model allows for a transition of ownership which continues to support the Company’s total cost of ownership (TCO) goals. The GIC model has helped the Company reclaim control over their global development resources in a powerful and transformational way, at a TCO unheard of in traditional IT Services and outsourcing models.

Here a sample ramp plan demonstrating the SMC Squared approach and potential capabilities:

 

 

Operating like a lean start-up, this global center of excellence for digital technology will enable us to overcome resource constraints, while also reducing reliance on external contractors.

Chief Operating Officer

Not us versus them—these employees are part of our team. They are recruited for fit, developed and managed as long-term assets to our Company.

Chief Digital Officer

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