Guidacent has partnered with clients of all sizes and in a variety of industries to execute their critical initiatives. Our team of seasoned leaders share a passion for problem solving, innovative thinking, and delivering long-term client success.
Project RescueFashion RetailerRetail
A national fashion retailer revamped a major component of its purchase-to-distribution process. This business capability enables the retailer to purchase goods and store them for later distribution. At go live, process and system issues surfaced that led to data discrepancies and overall solution instability. The client engaged Guidacent to lead the project rescue.
Guidacent provided a project rescue leader to organize a command center comprised of SMEs across the client’s business process, IT, and operations teams. Within 8 weeks, the team performed analyses across 10 systems, and then implemented a number of patches, fixes, and manual processes that stabilized the business solution. Shortly after, the team incepted and executed a technology stabilization phase which delivered a fully functional, automated solution for the business.
M&A IntegrationPOSSIBLEMarketing and Advertising
POSSIBLE, a national digital marketing agency, was formed through the merger of 4 different advertising companies. While the merger met its objectives for creating a world-class agency, it also led to redundant, inefficient operational processes and support systems. Error-prone manual intervention was required on a regular basis to reconcile important business and employee information. Guidacent was asked to lead the assessment and integration of these operational areas.
Guidacent provided a leader that started by working with key stakeholders to create alignment on a shared vision for how the entities would operate together. This team was able to develop unified processes and requirements that still respected the uniqueness of each business. From there, we worked with the client to select and integrate a third party application along with supporting processes and tools. The end result was a unified operating and financial system that met the needs of the newly formed organization.
"Partnering with Guidacent allowed us to focus on our business goals while implementing a very complex, multi geographical ERP system in a very short timeframe. Guidacent’s strategic focus and dedication to getting straight down to business, was critical in our success. By providing an experienced leader who dove in immediately, we were able to assess risks, make educated decisions, and provide thoughtful feedback in critical areas throughout the project . I was also impressed with the focus on building trust and relationships across the organization, which were the key to delivering a successful launch."
- Jeff Cordick, VP Finance and Operations
Program LeadershipSymetraFinancial Services/Insurance
For the past several months, we have been executing one of our most visible and critical initiatives. Guidacent first helped with rescuing and then guiding a peripheral project and then directly managing key components of our effort. We've engaged three Guidacent consultants to support our projects and have been very pleased with the quality of resources provided. Guidacent has consistently provided high quality project management resources at competitive pricing who have integrated well into our existing teams.
Guidacent consultants continue to provide leadership to Symetra’s most important and challenging initiatives.
"I’ve been very pleased with the quality of resources provided by Guidacent. They come up to speed quickly and demonstrate confident and competent leadership to our teams."
- Jay Orum, VP Information Technology – Symetra
Savers is a for-profit, global thrift retailer operating in over 330 locations with 22,000 employees. The company offers great quality, gently used clothing, accessories and household goods. Their business model of purchasing, reselling and recycling helps more than 120 nonprofit organizations by paying them for donated goods and keeps more than 650 million pounds of used goods from landfills each year.
Guidacent was asked to provide a senior consultant to help Savers integrate their new 5-year Strategic Plan into their Annual Business plan and goal setting process. Guidacent led the gathering of business initiatives, defining performance targets, and prioritizing the initiatives across the company to achieve the greatest lift in performance results. Planning and project management templates were created to define and track the quarterly tactics and milestones required to meet the volume and financial targets. Guidacent facilitated the preparation of the Annual Plan for presentation to the Savers’ Board and also designed a monthly management review process to ensure the functional business plans were kept up to date.
"Guidacent did an excellent job helping us pull together our company’s annual business plan in support of our long range strategic plan. Their consultant collaborated very well with my executive team and their direct reports to pull together all the initiatives across each functional area and prioritize them down to a focused set of high impact projects aligned to our key business goals. The planning tools and templates created were easy to use and administer and Guidacent ensured the plan was handed-off in a smooth manner to the business teams"
- Ken Alterman, CEO - Savers, Inc.
IT Solution DeliveryHermansonCommercial Construction
Hermanson, a leading Pacific Northwest Mechanical Contractor, has experienced substantial growth over the past several years and out-paced some of the capability built into their IT systems and processes. The network was having stability issues, data management was a challenge and remote system access on job sites was not efficient. These critical issues caused the business to lose confidence in the IT team’s ability to support them. Productivity across the company was suffering. Hermanson engaged Guidacent to conduct a full-scale assessment of the IT systems, processes, and team.
Guidacent brought in a team of experts to evaluate applications, network infrastructure, and needs of the business. The team quickly determined the critical path, prioritized a list of urgent projects and developed a long-term plan to allow the IT department to scale with future growth of the company.
The team stabilized the network, deployed some key enterprise applications to the cloud, and hired new IT resources to support the evolving needs of the organization. The end result increased the productivity of the business, improved efficiency, and renewed the relationship between IT and the rest of the company.
"Guidacent came in with a real sense of urgency. Their team jumped in, developed a plan, executed the plan and gave me the confidence that we can continue to serve our customers."
- Rick Hermanson, CEO Hermanson, LLP
Business IntelligenceBrooks Running CompanySpecialty Footwear
Brooks Running Company, a global leader in specialty apparel and shoes, has a vision to get to a 360 view of their customer. The problem that Brooks faced was that much of the data was not accessible or unstructured. While multiple efforts were made to integrate the data, Brooks selected a new technology to pilot that could weave together a new view of the data. Guidacent helped lead the effort to implement this new solution that leveraged machine learning to transform, join, and store the various customer data stores. The customer insights derived from the new customer views enabled Brooks to fine tune customer messaging and as a result, Brooks was able to see an increase of click throughs and conversions.
"When we first began working with Guidacent, Brooks had a lot of data in various silos but didn’t have a single view of customer data with the existing customer database. Guidacent provided a Senior Consultant to help drive the implementation of a new solution utilizing machine learning to help integrate multiple data sources into a single customer view. During the engagement, Guidacent provided the project, vendor, and stakeholder management support to quickly integrate the various data sources into the new tool and launch the capabilities back to the business. The integration and implementation support greatly accelerated our ability to delivery this solution to the business. The resulting data insights provided Brooks with the ability to deliver information to our customers that was more relevant and valuable. "
- Kristin Olsen, Senior Manager
Cloud SolutionsExpediaTravel and Hospitality
Expedia, a global travel and hospitality ecommerce platform, was exploring new solutions for data management and visualization due to exponential growth in the data sets created by some of their newest business units. Legacy systems were a combination of both custom and packaged software, and as the business grew and evolved, the need for new features was realized as the business teams sought to access and visualize the data in new and different ways. Improved reporting capabilities required a need for deeper reporting functionality, improved visualization, and on demand reporting access across multiple user groups. Existing features could not support these new requirements and building additional features into the legacy tools would have been very expensive and still fallen short of providing the visualization required. A new solution was needed.
The Guidacent consultant worked with the business and technical teams to define and implement an end-to-end data management and reporting solution. The solution focused on 3 AWS components: Quicksight for the reporting front end, Athena for server-less queries, and Amazon S3 for data storage. Original system involved queries moving data of nearly 2 petabytes per year and incurred per terabyte costs on a daily basis. The new solution reduced the need for massive data queries and requires only 5 terabytes of data movement on a yearly basis also leading to a corresponding cost reduction.
The key benefit in the creation of this new system allows business users to define and generate reporting and business analytic visualizations on demand. This capability greatly enhances the speed whereby business decisions can be made. The new solution also allowed the client to continue to meet business critical operational functions that would have been compromised in in the old system and ultimately allowed for the deprecation of that system. Creating a platform for business users to self-serve and perform their own analytics also created space for the technology analytics team to focus on enhancements and delivering features in other areas. Additionally, the analytics team now had an easier way to manage their data sets. The ability to more efficiently manage larger data sets and multiple data inputs, enhance scalability across user groups, and reduce the need for additional integration layers ultimately resulted in a dashboard load time reduction of 70%.
"This new system is fantastic! It’s so much faster than our old system, it actually works all the time and I can do things with it that we couldn’t do before and get to information that wasn’t available in the old system!"
- Expedia Stakeholder
CybersecurityLarge Healthcare Insurance ProviderHealthcare
The company is the largest health plan provider in the Pacific Northwest, serving more than 2 million people. In order to protect customer data in an ever-changing threat and risk environment, the company adopted the Health Information Trust Alliance (HITRUST) Common Security Framework (CSF) to mature toward an ongoing, robust IT security program. The HITRUST CSF harmonizes key standards from other compliance frameworks such as HIPAA, PCI, ISO, and NIST and is one of the most widely-adopted security frameworks within the U.S. healthcare industry.
This decision to seek HITRUST certification meant the company had to undergo a thorough external HITRUST certification process spanning 19 domains. They had an aggressive strategy to achieve certification within a year, which included coordination of over a thousand moving parts across various internal and external stakeholders and managing company-wide change control to minimize operational impacts during the certification process. The company engaged Guidacent for assistance because of the firm’s exceptional track record of program delivery.
The Guidacent team mobilized the program team to define scope and the roadmap for key objectives and milestones, which were then prioritized and resourced across the organization. Guidacent also developed and executed an organizational-wide HITRUST communications and change readiness plan. Program metrics were developed to accurately track the client’s overall corrective action efforts and certification readiness on a regular cadence that would align with the HITRUST scoring methodology.
After 9 months of continuous collaboration with Guidacent, the client achieved HITRUST certification 3 weeks ahead of schedule. This achievement was a direct result of the Guidacent approach and the program structures that were built to enable the client to continue aligning with the ever-evolving CSF framework. This helps the client continue evolving its security framework in a rapidly changing global environment and positions them for successful recertification every two years
"Guidacent was a natural choice for us because of our successful history together, landing high-visibility initiatives. HITRUST was one of our long-term corporate goals, so we wanted to partner with a “can’t miss” mindset.
The approach Guidacent brings to the team expands the capabilities and instills confidence. My experience with their approach is that even the most chaotic programs are brought back to green in short order; reducing frustration, costs, and risk in program execution."
- Chief Information Security Officer, Large Healthcare Insurance Provider