Starting position

Our client, a USA based family entrepreneur, transferred its production from Western Europe, involving relatively few industrial production but a lot of packaging and logistic. He intended to supply his product all over Europe from here and partly manage raw material purchase.

They came to us when the production lines had been running for three months. The capacity utilization was less than earlier (80%) when it was deemed insufficient. It was hardly above 60%. There was a market demand, but there was a risk that customers would turn away if delays occur repeatedly.

Project tasks

Our interim manager earlier gained experience at a multinational food company and at local companies of various size as manufacturing, quality assurance manager and general manager. Here the goal was to end production anomalies and reach steady capacity utilization of 90% and above. The owner and the quality assurance manager brought by him did not speak Hungarian; the CEO was someone who earlier was in charge of distribution in Eastern Europe.

In order to meet his main target, the interim manager could ignore circumstances and could focus on the fastest manufacturing of the product portfolio as defined by logistics. He took up conflicts at all levels, and convinced the owner that this was necessary for fast change. After the first month the owner was not sure if he had chosen the right man but after the third month he was telling us about joint achievements with a big smile on his face. By the fifth month the target was actually accomplished, and the interim manager got a new assignment to transfer another production line as project lead with full responsibility.

Results

The project which was originally planned for six to eight months led to a point where the client intended to employ the interim manager as an employee CEO. We could not and did not want to deny this demand…

Project tasks

Transforming the internal logistic processes, with a focus on improving material flow and efficiency of production and warehousing processes. Detailed tasks:

  • Reviewing inbound material flow, detailed interviews with employees in production/warehouse/logistics.
  • Reviewing processes of material serving from the warehouse.
  • Based on the review, preparing a detailed action plan for transforming processes of material supply and warehousing.
  • Optimization of material servicing.
  • Introducing, testing of new processes in production, optimization of warehouse processes.
  • Ongoing training of affected employees
  • Documenting modified processes (job instructions, process description).
  • During the transformation, the following KPIs will be continuously assessed and reported regularly to the client or his representative:
    • Growth of efficiency
    • Decrease of downtime as a result of lack of material
    • Measuring or signaling decrease of workforce or opportunities to decrease the workforce as a result of positive changes
  • Following the successful transformation at the selected production units, expanding changes, introducing them to other production units
  • Participation in selection and training of the final logistic manager, continuous and full transfer of tasks and responsibilities.

Results

  • The production efficiency grew by 15%
  • Downtime as a result of lack of material decreased below 2%
  • As a result of reorganizing the personnel, it was possible to decrease the headcount by 20%
  • After accomplishing his assignment, the interim manager was offered a job and continued as an employee.

Starting position

There was a significant delay int he onboarding process of the final logistic group leader, which made it necessary to manage the gap temporarily. On top of that, the task also included optimization of internal logistic processes, with special emphasis on solving daily issues related to the recent SAP launch, stabilizing and finalizing ERP processes.

Project tasks

  • Based on customer demand, timely provision of the necessary parts in the needed quantity
  • Tracking the raw material stocks with regard to the production, checking their reliability
  • Cooperation during supplier development
  • Cooperation in planning and implementation of logistic processes (customer, material flow, warehouse, suppliers)
  • Ordering non-serial materials
  • Preparation and execution of orders for suppliers
  • Reviewing suppliers’ invoices
  • Managing complaints with regard to suppliers (quantitative inconsistencies, packaging, late or early delivery, return of goods, etc.)
  • Following up on customers’ claims, checking their justness, forwarding customers’ claims to production
  • Daily follow-up and checking of inbound and outbound deliveries
  • Professional support and supervision of receiving gooods
  • Cooperation in developing measurments for logistics and ongoing follow-up
  • Cooperation in developing the applied SAP system
  • Base data input and update in SAP
  • Cooperation in process mapping, supervision and development in SAP

Results

  • Operation output grew by 10%
  • Downtime due to lack of material decreased below 1.5%
  • Finalizing and training disponents of logistic processes in SAP
  • In the last three week long period of the assignment, the onboarding of the final logistic group leader was successfully accomplished, group leader’s functions and daily tasks transferred.

Starting position

For three months, the manager worked as interim senior quality assurance manager at the Hungarian site of a global multinational logistics service provider which was established to service a market leader multinational manufacturing company.

It was classical interim assignment: the client expected Interim Kft. to have within three days a quality assurance manager who would be accepted by the client as a specialist being capable to create and run special quality assurance functions that the client thought to be in critical condition.

Project tasks

Handling customer complaints, including:

  • Developing and implementing the 8D process that is acceptable to the client
  • Closing complaints within deadlines
  • Keeping complaints of end-users within limit values.

What made the assignment specific was the fact that it was necessary to handle complaints of factories being between the client and customer as part of the supply chain doing contracted manufacturing by using the Internet based complaint handling tool.

It was particularly challenging that the customer had a strong presence at the site of the client where it developed a complete “shadow management” (with operations, quality assurance, logistics, etc. managers). As a result, there were a lot of daily operative issues to be handled, which in turn drew away resources from executing strategic tasks. That was done by reorganizing the quality assurance system and by delegating and spreding operative tasks.

Results

  • The customer accepted an 8D-process
  • The number of endusers’ complaints remained within limit values
  • The number of unresolved complaints significally decreased

The success of the project was evident: at the end of the project, the client offered an employment contract to our manager.

Starting position

The regional CFO gave the assignment to Interim Kft. to replace the chief financial officer who had resigned unexpectedly and to to it as soon as possible. It was an interim assignment, a gap management until they found their next CFO. It lasted for three months. The group of companies had 9 business units in Hungary. The interim CFO had to take over all daily tasks and planned projects at once.

Project tasks

- Starting the liquidation of a company
- Finishing the ongoing taxation authority review on VAT
- Taking over the process of a cross-border merger
- Integrating a company into SAP
- Integrating a new member joining the group of companies into consolidation through the existing SAP reporting system
- Preparig internal regulations
- Mapping out internal processes and making necessary suggestions
- Review and check of tax statements before submission
- Checking travel expenses before transfer (at invoice level)
- Monitoring financial aspects of ongoing legal issues
- Setting of SAP for internal audit
- Negotiations with banks, expansion of bank guarantees
- Attending daily ad hoc tasks.

Results

The tasks were not fully defined in advance, so they changed a lot as the project was moving forward. Priorities were not set so interim CFO had to figure out what is important. The company’s internal structure was also changing, so it was a challenge to keep contact with appropriate in order to accomplish the tasks. As the Regional CFO was always traveling, the local CFO had the responsibility to lead the local team in a way not to put extra burden on the Regional CFO.

The biggest challenge was that the interim CFO received information and tasks from the Regional CFO as if he had been working at the company for many decades, remembering all old stories that still had an impact on the present.

Since the interim CFO had extensive experience in dealing with such matters, he quickly got up to speed (in a week) and set priorities (despite changing expectations).

The client was happy with this service despite the fact that sometimes communication was uneasy because of linguistic hurdles (all information available in English only) and because of large distances making it necessary to talk a lot over the phone.

Sometimes there were conflicts as the abrupt change sometimes gave headache to business unit heads as well, and occasionally they did not take the CFO seriously because he was “an interim manager only”.

After having acquired professional prestige with these teams, there were no more problems. His biggest luck was that all people in the Finance department were well performing and decent colleagues and it was quickly obvious that he can rely on their work.

Starting position

The client is a privately owned Hungarian market leader with over € 5 m turnover in metal trade, recycling, and processing business. 5 sites, over 100 headcounts.

Project tasks

Setting up and strengthening of trading processes (metal purchase, sale, reprocessing), heading the commercial department.

Results

In a difficult period of high market and stock exchange volatility combined with political uncertainties (possible nationalization of waste recycling), we implemented a strict system of weekly scheduling of trade partner visits, intensified our market presence through marketing and purchasing campaigns, launched cold call center based (telemarketing) campaigns from internal and purchased data basis.
We implemented the central control and supervision of site inventories and purchase prices; through diminishing and rationalizing sales destinations and delivery methods we cut back unit costs and optimized breakeven point of products.
We improved the cashflow by centrally controlled receivables and checks on inventory levels. On metal processing we started regular weekly production scheduling, and review of results.

In order to increase profitability, the interim manager presented a complex set of proposed actions to the owner covering all sites, the company’s entire organization and management.

Starting position

A sudden and adequate quality replacement was required at a multinational packaging glass manufacturing and selling company. The chief accountant resigned and until the permanent replacement was found a gap management was requested in order to ensure smooth operations.

Project tasks

  • Heading the accounting department
  • Preparation and checking of tax statements
  • Participation at tax audits
  • Co-ordination of SAP implementation from accounting and tax perspectives
  • Participation in corporate transformation (from one company to three), supervising accounting and tax issues
  • Daily contacts with foreign SAP consultants, participation in teleconferences
  • Due to customs free zone status, preparation of documentation, adhering to strict rules from accounting and tax perspectives
  • Co-ordination of tasks at company level during auditing the multinational corporation
  • Contacts with lawyers
  • Contacts with customs, tax and local authorities on finance, accounting and tax issues
  • Direct contact with HQ’s finance department re. different reports
  • Daily contact with central treasury

Results

The interim manager fulfilled all tasks without problems until the permanent chief accountant started. The client was fully satisfied with his work; due to his friendly personality he could successfully manage the team under his leadership.

Starting position

  • A foreign owned systems integrator company’s business in Hungary with € 10 m turnover
  • Selling SAP integrated system

Project tasks

  • Transformation of the sales organization and its processes, implementation of regular reporting system for sales agents and CRM based acquisition process
  • Increase efficiency of the sales organization
  • Redisigning the sales agents’ job

Results

In a critical period of the company, the interim manager could make the agents’ work transparent, controlled and systemic by transformation of the commercial processes. In 3 months he implemented a sale process based on regular market intel, building up of CRM basis, continuous client visits and acquisition of new clients.

Starting position

Work at a medium sized company belonging to a Hungarian privately owned group of companies. The company makes wielded steel products that are distributed in the Hungarian market by several Hungarian small enterprizes and an international company of German ownership. The company does product sale only. 65 headcounts, 860 million HUF annual revenue, 40-50 million HUF profit.

The client (the owner) sensed a threat asked the interim manager to make the company in order, as interim management earlier was a success at other members of the group of companies.

Project tasks

Although the company looked fairly good and organized, once could feel the lack of a CEO with a sense of ownership and drive to control. There were no real production planning and accountability. The main issue of the whole group of companies and of this particular company as well was the burden of repayment of credits that were taken to have self-financing for the tenders the company won.

The interim manager got full authority from the owner, he succeeded to make order in basic processes, establishing the foundation for production planning, accountability, ex-post evaluation, visual management and individual performance appraisal. A web store was about to launch as well as a sale from warehouse to general public. He made strengthened relations with partners, and worked out the system of maintenance.

Results

Together with the business management, the interim manager identified different indirect burdens, fixing costs. At the same time, he reviewed supplier contracts, started a bidding for raw material suppliers and implemented a small-scale headcount reduction (5 people). Significan cost reduction was achieved with these steps, 12-13 million HUF per semester. The interim and the owner selected the new sales director, the would-be CEO, who will boost sales and started business planning. For the developments they prepared a priority list.

In summary: due to the interim manager’s work, the company has a vision and can be successful by carrying on the freshly started processes.

Starting position

Commisssioned by a bank, our company got the two-staged assignement to work at a procect financed hotel. More than 200 rooms, casino, 3 restaurants, bar, fitness center, open all year round, negative cashflow.

Project tasks

First a hotelier professional (experiences in several places, different types and sizes) and a finance professional spent four weeks at the hotel in the height of the season to assess the situation and decide if it was possible to do a turnaround. Given the professional deficiencies, wrong approach, an attitude based not on cash we thought that it was possible to have positive cashflow within a short period of time.

After the study was accepted, we won at a new tender with another professional (having many years of experience at a big multinational hotel chain in different management positions) to do implementation. We kept the local management and have them our interim manager accepted as their supervisor. The interim manager was using his veto only in cases when it was necessary to overwrite a descition taken by local management for achieving the objectives. We established an appropriate system of controlling through consultations with our advisor and the client, and handed it over to the local finance manager. There were significant changes in defining workforce needs, rational use of worktime, adapting the restaurant’s assortment both in quality and quantity to international standards, in preparing rooms and implementing a tender process in procurement.

Results

We started to work in November, and by the end of the summer season the bank could collect interest without jeopardizing continuous functioning. Of course, a hotel with positive cashflow represents a different value in the eye of potential buyers. After 15 months, we gave back to the local management the job, and everybody was happy with the results.

Starting position

Company Profile

Subsidiary of a Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) company group. Mid-sized call centre operations; first level IT and general service support with clients in different sectors.
Employing approximately 700 people in one location.

  • Net revenue of the group of companies in 2010 is EUR 589.1 million
  • Business projects led by business managers to provide service to end users of clients of the company. Low staffed in-house HR operations mainly concentrating on personnel and recruitment activities; outsourced payroll operations.
  • Outsourced finance operations.
  • Sales activities mainly managed by the managing director with own P&L responsibility, but under strong control by the European management.

Project tasks

Manage people transformation of the Hungarian subsidiary in order to meet effectiveness expectations as well as client requirements

Review effectiveness of HR operations and implement new operational model for HR services
Coach and mentor a high potential within the HR department and enable her to fulfil an HR Manager role within a year

The interim manager acted as a local HR manager, being accountable for the local HR operations and budget as well as a change manager to manage the organisational transformation aiming to support the ambitious growth plans of the Company. Directly reported to the European HR Director.

Managing business transformation

Following the review of client expectations and a workshop with the members of the senior leadership a proposal was developed. The business transformation mainly aimed to review the efficiency of the current organisation and roles as well as the efficiency of the team leads and provide a corresponding plan to improve the selected metrics.

Review and improvementation of HR operations: the HR department provided at this time basic personnel administration activities combined with strong recruitment results, all senior leaders agreed that the company’s ambitious growth plans require something more;

including efforts in the areas of employee engagement, improved internal communication as well as L&D and career management. Also root cause analysis of talent loss and attrition.

Results

  • mplement new IT solutions for HR administration (personnel administration, payroll, recruitment, L&D)
  • Improve payroll provider’s service levels
  • Revise and improve HR processes
  • Implement HR business partner and back office activities to provide business managers with focussed HR business partnering
  • The would be HR manager’s preparation started.

The coaching program included a professional and personal development. This combined effort let her to be ready for the HR manager role within 10 months.

Project tasks

To boost a DaimlerChrysler (DC) “Optima” business at the Czech site of Yazaki Plzen-Bozkov attaining ith zero quality and delivery claims.

Results

In spite of difficulties before the project started re. technical, quality, logistics and cost issues, by the end of the contract period the situation fundamentally changed and the project achieved the targets. The Client expressed its satisfaction.

Project tasks

Implementation of a management accountability system from shop floor to top at Moroccan site

Results

An accountability system was implemented on shop floor level (foremen, shift leaders, production heads) and production was slowly improving in all aspects (quality, delivery, efficiency). Top management resisted, so one could achieve only partial success at that level.

Project tasks

Improvement of organizational efficiency through improvements in internal communication and better focusing on management activities. Significant improvements in customer satisfaction.

Results

By the end of the project the management’s co-operation level improved, the accountability meetings were more straightforward and as a consequence the operative results of the company significantly improved.