In opting for a multi-partner outsourcing strategy, Lord Corporation finds HR XCEL the best fit for its payroll and benefits administration services.
Address: 111 Lord Drive, Cary NC 27511
Phone: 919-468-5979, 6412
Web Address: www.lord.com
Number of Employees: 1,900 domestic,
Description of Primary Products or Services: Engineering/Manufacturing
Date of Outsourcing Commencement: January 2006
Provider: HR XCEL, LLC
Please describe the circumstances that led to your company turning to outsourcing your benefits and
payroll services: Our internal talent was focused on administrative tasks and extensive technology upgrades. Outsourcing was a way to alleviate the administrative burden and to shift our focus from non-value added tasks to strategic support for core business needs.
What were your initial concerns and worries about engaging services?: We were concerned about the long-term viability and financial stability of our potential providers, the ability to retain access to company data and administration processes, and the potential negative impact to quality and timeliness of HR services. HR XCEL was able to address these concerns by confirming their financial stability, accommodating our data access requirements, and collaborating with us to develop performance metrics for service levels.
How did you decide on this model of external services?: To provide the best return on our investment, the outsourcing model had to eliminate our need to support in-house HRIS technology. We identified potential partners that could provide the technology with corresponding HR services and proven flexibility. Ultimately, we opted for a multi-partner approach, outsourcing our payroll administration, benefits administration and HRIS to HR XCEL. The company collaborates with our payroll check processing, pension administration, and actuarial services partners to deliver interrelated services.
Can you describe the current steady state of your HR department?: Our outsourcing endeavor began in early 2005 with a “go-live” in January of 2006. We have now reached a consistent level in our quality and timeliness of services. With the learning curve behind us, we are able to shift resources from administration and IT upgrades to strategic projects that support our business.
How did you decide which provider was best suited for your needs?: Our due diligence process identified HR XCEL as the best solution for our HRIS, benefits, and payroll administration needs. HR XCEL showed a willingness to collaborate directly with our other partners, a strong commitment to meeting our needs, and a web-based HRIS application that met our data and processing needs. Their flexible, adaptable approach to services provided the foundation for a long-term partnership.
In retrospect, would you have changed the tactical or strategic approach you took? If so, how would it differ?: On a tactical measure, the transition of benefit services was virtually seamless, while our payroll processes were much more complicated. Considering the complexity of our payroll processes, we would have shifted more pointed focus to payroll prior to going live.
What advice do you have for other similarly sized and type of companies considering an external solution?: Outsourcing is a tremendous effort. Thorough due diligence efforts and a quality team that is engaged and committed to the desired outcome are crucial. Get team members to embrace the knowledge and experience they will gain from the journey and execute a well-thought-out plan. Your partnership will take some time to mature; preparing your organization for the change by managing expectations will make the transition much smoother.
Jennifer Alviano is manager of international compensation/benefits & executive programs.