Case Study: Lifestyles of the Rich and Outsourced

Multi-million dollar Anderson Companies still likes to save money through HRO.

by Marsha Kendall

 

The Anderson Companies are a real estate development operation focusing on recreational and residential communities. Founder Lyle Anderson defined this market in the early 1980s with the creation of exclusive golf communities in north Scottsdale, Arizona. Current properties are located in Santa Fe, New Mexico; on Hawaiis Kona coast; east of Phoenix, Arizona; and Scotland. With a variety of business interests in luxury homebuilding, golf-related enterprises, and investment properties, the HR department had to juggle numerous employees in different regions and with different needs. It made Anderson the perfect candidate for outsourcing.

 

Our employees serve a very sophisticated clientele, explained Bill Siwek, executive vice president and chief financial officer for the Anderson Companies. In choosing an HR provider it was critical that we partner with an organization that understands our business as well as treats our employees the way we expect them to treat our members.

 

Andersons initial needs were the consolidation and standardization of accounting and payroll functions. However, after re-evaluation, the opportunity for full service human resources and payroll outsourcing was present. In late 2002, Anderson partnered with Core3, Inc., a provider that specializes in human resources, payroll, finance and accounting, and information technology outsourcing for the mid market, with shared service centers located in Phoenix, Arizona and Delhi, India. The company chose Core3 because it provided every level of service from field support for the Anderson Companies employees and management to strategy, recruiting, training, and transaction processing, as well as access to a Phoenix-based shared service center.

 

This is a unique delivery model in that the client wanted to maintain employee visibility to HR on a daily basis, while improving the quality of the function and reducing costs. The provider has on-site staff who are committed to employee and management support, while all strategy, development, and the majority of transaction processing are handled on a centralized basis at the providers shared service center.

 

The first-year results were impressive. Employee satisfaction with HR grew from 74 percent at the start of the relationship to 92 percent by the years end. Accuracy in benefit administration rose from 64 percent to 100 percent in the same time frame, and payroll accuracy has consistently exceeded 99 percent each month.

 

Special projects during the first year included the introduction of a standardized HR Policy Manual, new employee handbooks in both English and Spanish, new hire orientation, customized trainings, and the standardization of job titles and job descriptions, thus reducing titles by more than 20 percent. In addition, through a combination of field and support staff, the service provider was able to successfully partner with two Anderson Companies properties and increase staffing by more than 30 percent to handle the seasonality in the business. Equally important, the outsourcing relationship contributed to the reduction of HR/payroll costs by more than 20 percent, and impacted other related costs, such as a 40 percent reduction in legal fees and tighter controls for severance and relocation packages.

 

These accomplishments were driven by the providers combination of HR expertise, experience with global models, and comprehensive set of delivery tools. Core3s familiarity with global delivery allowed it to take the model a step further and understand the challenges and opportunities surrounding the support and management of thier own employees placed at client sites. Daily calls, weekly phone conferences, and regular site visits, are some of the tools they have has utilized to create a sense of team with its HR staff assigned to this relationship. In addition, through tools such as CoreSupport, the HRO companys new issue identification, management and resolution tool, Core3 has up-to-the-minute access to employee issues and concerns. This information allows them to ensure a timely and consistent response at the property level, report to client executives on the specifics surrounding a particular employee issue, plus identify trends for proactive workforce management.

 

Core3 has enabled the Anderson Companies to focus on our core competencies related to real estate development by addressing all our employee related issues. They truly understand our business and continue to deliver innovative solutions to support our success, concluded Siwek.   

Posted April 10, 2005 in Enabling Technology

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