When one company acquires another, their people, processes, and technology don’t become one all by themselves.
A fast-growing player in the government contracting market needed help. They had just completed a strategic acquisition to expand their customer base, gain access to new contract vehicles, and add complementary technical capabilities. They wanted to align the new enterprise with minimal disruption to day-to-day operations, while positioning for future organic growth. They also needed to address lingering operational impacts from the deferred integration of a prior acquisition. Finally, they needed to remediate control risks identified by their strategic investor.
As a lean organization in the midst of change, the firm needed help establishing governance and creating a plan to implement their vision. They brought in Celerity for our expertise in both merger integration and organizational change management. With a well-implemented plan, they could keep their focus on serving their customers while positioning for future organic and acquisitive growth in the government contracting market.
Taking an organized approach to a multi-pronged challenge
Celerity set the foundation for the integration effort by working with the executive team and Board to define the goals for the acquisition, alignment with the firm’s overall strategic direction, and risks to delivering the expected value for the deal. We set up and ran an Integration Management Office (IMO), led the change management, and served as the bridge between the client and its strategic investor. Identified opportunities included:
- Several different functional areas in need of integration, such as accounting systems of record and HRIS systems
- Several processes in need of alignment, such as benefits, payroll dates, and provision of corporate credit cards and travel
Next, Celerity got to work:
|Managing the integration, including development and tracking of functional and cross-functional workplans, comprehensive communications, and risk and issue management|
|Leading organizational change management, including developing a change strategy, priority development, facilitating the flow of information, and building bridges within the organization|
|Developing a legal framework to meet the special requirements needed when a contractor is owned by a foreign entity and acquires a company that does classified work for the US government|
|Communicating with executive leadership and the strategic investor and ensuring their questions, concerns, and requests were addressed|
|Developing an operating model that consolidates shared services, establishes common practices, |
and achieves efficiencies
|Mitigating risk in business-critical areas such as cyber security, corporate policy, and financial controls|
|Tracking synergies to identify opportunities for cost savings across the companies through headcount reductions and increased purchasing power|
|Facilitating deep dives beyond normal integration efforts to solve issues for HR, business development, legal, finance, and other business units|
"We closed the deal on Day 1 and no one screamed at me, which hasn’t always been the case."
—Client Chief Development Officer and Integration Lead
Creating a more powerful, unified enterprise
To realize success in this complex initiative, Celerity set up 12 teams comprised of over 45 individuals, and managed a backlog of over 400 items across those teams. We partnered with the integration teams to harmonize and secure the processes and systems of the two companies, all while keeping the existing business moving forward.
Integration and remediation efforts covered a wide range of processes and systems across many functional units including HR, business development, contracts, legal, finance, IT, quality assurance, corporate strategy, and communications. From benefits selection and payroll date selection to network loophole closure and policy codification, to CRM integration and a new corporate strategic plan, we helped teams reach across functional silos and between management layers to make hard decisions, prepare for the unexpected, and implement changes successfully.
Disparate companies with disparate systems
Insufficient systems and strategies that were enterprise-wide
Duplicated costs, licenses, memberships and subscriptions
No legal framework to support classified work
Fully integrated organization and systems
New systems and strategies that support the merger
Costly redundancies identified and eliminated
Legal framework developed so foreign-owned contractor can do classified work