The Infosys Labs research blog tracks trends in technology with a focus on applied research in Information and Communication Technology (ICT)

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User Specific Shared Services: Need of Present-day

Shared services are seen as the consolidation of services into a unit known as Shared Services Centre (SSC). SSC has to deliver services to the various users such as employees, Government agencies, vendors and customers.

In some of the cases, SSC is developed as a back office to merge the secondary functions of an organization so that it can be developed as a separate organization or can be outsourced. The major motivation for adoption of SSC is to control the cost by reducing resources. This solo motivation leads to unproductive implementation of shared services. Therefore, decision makers have to think about the real need of shared services and how to minimize expenditure for longer duration.

Over two decades (from 80's), the types of services provided by SSC have changed a lot. Now, it is combination of transactional services and knowledge based services. It can be easily observed that shared services have been always looked as business strategy from the organization perspective to cut spending of organization. It is never seen as center of service to users and not implemented to provide best services to consumers.

Consider a case of an employee who needs services from an organization such as income tax deducted, salary credited, bus service, company provided laptop, leaves and many more. These services are provided by various SSC. Therefore, to get these services employee has to visit many units and meet several people. This is unproductive work and incurs losses for the organization. To overcome this situation, better solution is to provide a user specific SSC. It can be a single window to provide all services required to employee. It can be physical solo SSC only for employees or a single IT based online system which bundles only employee specific services. In this solution, employee doesn't have to visit many places. This reduces operational cost SSC and for employee there is no waste of time and energy. Some of the examples of user specific SSC are given in Figure 1.

It is always advisable to develop IT based SSC for delivering services to users rather than developing physical centers. Because of IT based SSC, it is possible to create multiple user specific SSC with lesser investment. It also promotes self-help hence dependencies on human executives get reduced significantly during operations.

While developing user specific SSC, first step is to identify all user categories. Each user category is treated as a separate SSC. After this, it necessary to identify and consolidate the services required for each category of user.

In the current state, user specific SSC aren't adopted very much by the organizations. However, it is essential for all organization to use it for controlling operational cost and delivery best service to users.

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Figure 1: User Specific Shared Services

 

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