2018 was a year of considerable change, here at Stefanini. From our offices in Romania to those throughout the EMEA region, our transformation has encompassed the entire business; ranging from organisational culture to internal processes.
We have automated a number of internal processes and expanded our digital services portfolio, empowering us to offer our clients real solutions for augmented reality, blockchain, machine learning and automation. We have also started working with several new industries, many of which have not traditionally used IT services, while expanding our collaboration with existing clients on several levels.
But what does this change look like, in real terms?
One of our greatest achievements in 2018 came from within. Not only did we increase the size of our team in EMEA by 10% to 3,200 people and in Romania to 1,660 people, but we also improved staff retention. The average tenure in the company increased by 20%, while staff turnover decreased by 25%. In an industry that’s fiercely competitive and where churn is constant, we are incredibly proud of these results.
Flexible working has been a crucial part of this change, as we have expanded our work-from-home policy to grant both incumbent staff and new recruits the opportunity to work remotely. Having piloted this programme throughout the year and found that productivity was higher, employees were more motivated and staff turnover was significantly lower, we will continue it on a wider scale in 2019.
The development of our work-from-home policy has also allowed us to expand our recruitment pool, meaning we are drawing candidates from further afield than the immediate location of our offices and increasing our ability to bring the best possible skills into the business.
While some of our internal transformational efforts have been focused on digitisation or process automation, we have also developed our organisational culture. Throughout 2018, our mission to embrace a service culture, draw clear career plans for all new colleagues and allow for greater flexibility exceeded all expectations. In addition to the intrinsic reward of improved team engagement, we also received external recognition, winning the ‘Employee Engagement Initiative of the Year’ award at the Romanian Outsourcing & Shared Services Awards.
We were also proud to see several members of our team winning prestigious industry awards in their own right throughout 2018. Our colleague, Olga Botuşan, Human Resources Director at Stefanini EMEA, was awarded ‘HR Manager of the Year’ at the Capital magazine Excellence in Management Awards Gala, and Raluca Andreea Andrei, Quality & Customer Experience Manager at Stefanini EMEA, received ‘Manager of the Year’ at the GSA (Global Sourcing Association) UK Professional Awards.
An industry in flux
The digital needs of the modern workplace are constantly evolving, and in 2019, the word “consultancy” will be essential. At Stefanini, we speak more about “consultancy” than “IT services” because our customers are no longer searching solely for technology. They are looking for solutions. Solutions to real, everyday problems that businesses are grappling with.
We’re also seeing a marked change in the types of businesses requiring our support. When it comes to potential users and customers, our offering is no longer reserved to a small number of companies. The specialist consultancy that we offer at Stefanini is becoming increasingly relevant to organisations that haven’t been traditionally digital, such as those in the automotive, insurance and banking industries.
This change in the people that we are doing business with, and the support that they require from us, will play a significant role in the next stage of our transformation.
What’s next for Stefanini?
2019 will be just as challenging for our industry as 2018 was, but we will look to continue our journey on the road to success. With the appointment of Farlei Kothe as CEO EMEA and Giuliana Veronese as LATAM Executive Manager, we will take our transformation one step further, by targeting new customers, expanding our business model and diversifying our revenue streams.
We want to increase productivity and to bring automation to our software development capabilities. At the same time, we want to offer quality, despite shrinking profit margins and a constantly uncertain fiscal framework. It’s not an easy task, but with this bold approach, we will strengthen our position as a key player in the business consultancy market.
We are getting better and better at juggling challenges and opportunities, but, as Heraclitus used to say, the only constant thing in life is change. And our industry is in pole position for change.