Case Study: Coca-Cola Hellenic

The customer/company

Coca-Cola Hellenic (CCH) is one of the world’s largest bottlers of brands of the Coca-Cola Company. It operates across 28 countries in three continents and has over 36,000 employees. It is a FTSE 100 company with a secondary listing on the Athens Exchange.

The assignment

We were retained by the Head of Shared Services (Transition) Director to lead a brand new Shared Services Centre for Europe based in Bulgaria and use our experience to ensure a smooth transition.  The scope included Accounts Payable, Financial Accounting, General Accounting and Human Resources.  The assignment therefore required building cooperation with the Country’s CFOs and their teams as well as the project team. John Hall led the Centre as its interim head and ultimately handed over the leadership and operations to a CCH manager.

The response

One of the key challenges was to maintain existing service levels for the individual countries whilst transitioning to the shared services model.

We approached this through a series of coordinated transition waves – 23 in all over a 13-month period. We faced with a significant challenge with one specific transition, so in order not to jeopardize the overall schedule, we ring-fenced the country concerned and re-allocated resources as an ‘intensive care team’. This approach allowed us to resolve the issues and get back on track whilst continuing with transitions.

Our work included organizational design, leadership development, team communication as well as building the foundations for the future by putting in place the necessary systems and processes that took into account the skillsets and age profiles of the employees.

The result

The assignment lasted 16 months and spanned two year-end closings, the second of which came only two months after the transition of the last wave of countries.  Despite this, the teams met expectations and delivered on schedule.

We successfully completed our handover to CCH manager who was appointed to head the Centre. The Centre has since expanded its services to include master data, financial reporting and additional HR processes.

“As well as managing the transition, John added particular value in the way he managed the team as its interim head. He communicated effectively with all levels to deploy good practice; optimized the design by moving elements around customer service and service management; and began to identify opportunities for continuous improvement. We now have a good basis of people practices in place and have appointed a CCH manager to run the Centre on a permanent basis”.

Manolis Fafalios
Shared Services (Transition) Director
Coca-Cola Hellenic