LEONI AG is a global supplier of wires, optical fibres, cables and wiring systems for the automotive sector and other industries. Posting an annual revenue of €4.4 billion in 2016, the German-based company employs about 80,000 people in 31 countries. It is among the largest cable manufacturers worldwide and is organized into two divisions: Wire and Cable Solutions (WCS) and Wiring Systems Division (WSD). LEONI’s internal IT organization, Information Management (IM), is centralized in the LEONI Holding in Nürnberg, Germany and is responsible for global IT supply and operations.
In recent years, LEONI faced dynamic growth, heightened global activities and forward integrations, which significantly raised requirements on IT operations. LEONI IM’s leadership realized, prudently, that the path forward was to strengthen its global IT strategy to reach a higher level of satisfaction with its internal customers WCS, WSD and the Holding organization. After taking a good look, some improvement areas were outlined:
Evidently, a well-crafted Business-IT alignment model was needed. However, the company’s leaders were reluctant to foist big changes onto its people and processes without proper support. BearingPoint convinced with its holistic, collaborative approach, which proved crucial to transforming LEONI IM’s ways of working whilst ensuring everyone was carried forward.
Drawing upon our leading-edge practices and experience, as well as LEONI’s inside-out knowledge of how to make the implementation successful, the project team progressed through four distinct phases:
1. Besides project set-up and workshop preparation, our team surveyed top management stakeholders to pin-down existing challenges, requirements and expectations regarding the Business-IT alignment.
2. We foregrounded the voices of both business and IT, at global and regional levels, when designing the BITAL concept. During a workshop series, we formulated:
With this inclusive approach, the finalized concept was highly credible with business stakeholders across the organization, helping to cement the global coverage.
3. During the final roll-out wave at WSD, we implemented the defined processes and organizational changes, in alignment with the Planview implementation (an IT project portfolio management tool). Communication and change management actions were also scheduled.
4. The Go-Live of the new BITAL collaboration model was prepared. Some 300 LEONI employees were trained in their new roles accompanied by global communication and change management measures. A satisfaction survey was conducted six months after each BITAL roll-out wave and afterwards integrated into IM’s annual customer satisfaction survey.
With the BITAL collaboration model now in place, the effectiveness and visibility of decision-making across LEONI’s business and IT functions has dramatically improved.
The introduction of the global Business-IT Alignment model for LEONI WSD significantly strengthened the communication and collaboration between our business units, central functions and the IT organisation. With the introduction of Business Demand Coordinators, BITAL contributes to a more professional management of our IT project requests, and supports more goal-oriented IT investment planning across the different business units.
Astrid Rooseboom, VP Program Management of LEONI WSD
In all, the BITAL model re-defined the process of IT project request handling from its identification to the closure stage. It optimized portfolio value and performance by aligning strategic business and IT goals. And it standardized the project portfolio management process in a formal and transparent manner. Other key benefits include:
But perhaps the true driver of success was the collaborative culture that was deepened over the course of the engagement. For example, every quarter it is now routine for the top management to come together to discuss strategic business-IT decisions, as also happens amongst divisional leads on a monthly basis. Today, innovative and well-founded governance rules are in force, supported by consistent data-enriched reports and robust processes. This enables LEONI to deliver strong communications as well as proactively tackle strategic IT decisions in step with the business’ rapid growth trajectory.