Webinar looks at how digitised operations can improve your bottom line

How Workday helped Lloyds of London revolutionise their procurement functions.

CFO South Africa recently hosted an intimate webinar that took a deep dive into Lloyds of London’s journey using on-demand financial management and human capital management software tool, Workday.

Lloyds of London has been in the insurance game for the past 330 years. They’re often at the forefront of insurance innovation and often the first responders to emerging risk with the best minds and proper expertise. Lloyds pioneered the first motor, aviation, satellite, political risk, and cyber insurance policies. They were also the first to develop risk policies for drones and driverless cars.

Lloyds chief procurement officer Tony Welch featured on the webinar via a recorded interview with Workday’s Frederic Portal. Tony joined Lloyds in 2017, around the same the company decided to introduce Workday.

In a time when businesses globally are digitising their operations, Workday was fortunate to jump on the wagon well before the Covid-19 virus spread across the world. And it proved to be a good measure too, as one of the critical features of Workday is that it supports remote working. Lloyds has a market of 43,000 people operating globally and an average of 4000 employees in their London building.

“The introduction of Workday has been critical to my role as CPO,” said Tony. “When I arrived at Lloyds, we didn’t understand who, why, how we purchased certain goods. These things just happened,” said Tony.

Workday account executive Ravin Nair explained that sourcing is unfortunately disjointed in organisations globally in today’s reality. “We see that the sourcing process is broken and presents unnecessary challenges for procurement to be leveraged as a strategic business partner,” said Ravin. “Legacy software systems such as spreadsheets and email chains ultimately hinder adoption and block effective collaboration.” He went on to explain the knock-on effect that these systems have on the performance metric measurement and supplier engagement.

“Procurement is a critical function of any business,” said Tony. He explained that while some businesses embrace that concept, others need to be taken on that journey. “I’ve been lucky to have the Lloyds board’s support to drive that approach,” he added, explaining that there were numerous challenges around visibility and accessing clean, accurate data before implementing Workday. “You become more reactive than proactive because it’s hard to plan.”

He also emphasised the importance of including the team in the journey. Tony said Lloyds had prepared staff for the Workday implementation, also informing them about why the company wanted to change systems. “We kept people informed about the day to day stuff, and we wanted to empower them to be part of the journey.”

Tony said clear and consistent communication was an integral part of the rollout. “We had a clear vision for what we wanted, and the rollout was strategically managed. There was no room for other ways of doing things, no exceptions.”

Lloyds is now reaping all the benefits Workday has to offer. Lloyds was able to refine and reduce its large supplier base, enabling it to build stronger partnerships with the business. “We know what’s going to happen before it happens, we can manage that risk, we can talk to the business in advance before they make those budget decisions,” said Tony.

Frederic said the value of clean, accurate data had played a significant role in reshaping companies’ operations across industries. Frederic said they’d received testimonials from high profile companies that use Workday, including Thompson Reuters, Warner Media, Netflix, Uber and Airbnb.