Centrica FD reveals offshore option

Link: Click here for the full interview with Phil Bentley

In an exclusive interview with Accountancy Age, group finance director Phil Bentley said the company was midway through a project to re-engineer shared service processes. On its completion Centrica would investigate the possibility of outsourcing ‘once efficient processes are in place,’ Bentley said.

Last month One.Tel, the group’s telecoms business said it was moving its 211 call centre jobs from Manchester to an offshore facility in Bangalore, India.

Bentley admitted the offshore model was politically sensitive but said the financial benefits to be reaped had made it an issues the group could no longer afford to ignore, particularly as the trend towards offshore financial back office processing gathers pace.

‘It’s certainly something we have to look at. We’re going through quite a big exercise in looking at our processes. When we have done that and things are working smoothly you can look at what the best option is, as opposed to outsourcing something that isn’t slick,’ Bentley said.

The group last week posted preliminary results for the year to 31 December 2003, which saw an 8% increase in pre tax profits to £778m on revenues up 24% to £17.9bn.

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