Disclose

In the spotlight: new business models

Issue 2, 2015

A growing number of SMEs are joining large companies in outsourcing their internal services.


Alex Astolfi

Alex Astolfi

Leader Assurance Switzerland

Welcome to the latest edition of Disclose! This time we’re focusing on the exciting topic of new business models.

Digital transformation has turned our lives upside-down – and not just our private lives. It’s also calling the whole way companies manufacture their products and deliver their services into question. Finance and other services that used to be dealt with in house are now often farmed out to outside companies or faraway countries. If you’re considering such a move, you shouldn’t just be thinking about the cost implications. In the article Outsourcing and offshoring finance functions you’ll find out how you can plan sustainably and decide intelligently.

In a shared service centre (SSC)1, similar services from different areas are pooled and delivered centrally. These include corporate support services, which can be particularly attractive for SMEs. Corporate support service providers that offer SSCs can advise their clients on how to professionalise their finance and HR functions and use the latest technology to automate the processes involved. Read more in Outsourcing for SMEs: corporate support services.

In addition to services, software and technological infrastructure such as data storage and computing capacity are increasingly being farmed out. In the article Cloud computing: harnessing the opportunities and managing the risks we explain why external platforms have become a key component of the digital revolution. Cloud computing takes you to a new dimension in terms of configuring your value chain efficiently. Experienced cloud specialists and professional security frameworks help you steer clear of or eliminate risks.

In the information society in which we live, every organisation, whatever area it operates in, should be keeping a close eye on the rapid changes taking place. Sooner or later these changes will affect all of us. Read Business model transformation and outsourcing to find out how. While some companies radically redesign their business models in one go, others opt for more gradual adaptation.

Outsourcing finance functions doesn’t mean outsourcing the responsibility. This is something company directors, audit committee members and auditors (both internal and external) should be bearing in mind. The concrete ramifications are described in the article Outsourcing financial functions: implications for the audit committee and external auditors.

One last word on this issue of Disclose. You’ll find there’s been a small but significant innovation: now you can share individual articles, and not just the entire web magazine, with friends via Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter. I’d like to take this opportunity to encourage you to subscribe to Disclose for free. You’ll be the first to receive an email link to the latest edition to stay right up to speed on the latest auditing and advisory issues.

I hope you enjoy this issue of Disclose, and that it challenges you to think in new ways.

Alex Astolfi

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Alex Astolfi

Alex Astolfi

Leader Assurance Switzerland

+41 58 792 81 95

  1. Shared service centre (SSC): An SSC is a separately resourced central unit providing and managing all types of processes within or outside an organisation. The goal is to deliver defined services to agreed levels of quality at agreed costs. It involves removing repetitive, shared services to free up human resources in the business for value-adding work. Shared services centres exploit scale effects and potential for configuring processes more efficiently.