Microsoft Outsources Back-Office Functions to Accenture
Published: October 3, 2007
by Alex Woodie
Microsoft has signed an outsourcing deal with Accenture to have the IT services firm run several of its back-office processes, including finance, accounting, and procurement services.
As part of the deal, which Accenture announced in mid-September, Microsoft will pay $185 million over the course of seven years to have Accenture take over several aspects of its business, including accounts payable, travel and expense, and several record-to-report functions, including fixed assets, general ledger, treasury, and statutory reporting. On the procurement side, Accenture will provide requisition-to-purchase-order processing.
When it's all said and done, Accenture will provide these services in 92 countries and 36 languages across five continents. The companies are several months into the program, and have already outsourced the processes in 30 percent of Microsoft's locations.
The outsourcing deal shows that even a company with a world-class IT staff sometimes can't provide essential business processes as affordably as the professional outsourcers. And while Microsoft famously "eats its own dog food" when it comes to running purely Windows-based ERP and other back-office applications, it has been known to outsource key aspects of its business before.
"We're constantly evaluating our internal processes and determining how we can improve operations," says Microsoft's CFO, Chris Liddell.
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