Professional Services

Trends in Global Mobility Services

The idea of going global has unlocked numerous opportunities for businesses who had been for long constrained by national boundaries. Saturation in the domestic market is forcing companies to explore additional business prospects globally as part of their current and future growth strategy.

Big Four Audit Firms Eye the Pie in Legal Services

Of late, the “Big Four” audit firms have been investing heavily in their legal services arms in Europe and APAC, where rules for practicing law are not that stringent. To begin with, they are primarily eyeing the mid-market segment before moving to the more lucrative cross-border M&A work.

The China Problem

Modern China has always been a country with an isolationist ideology, treating privacy with the utmost concern. The Great Firewall is a perfect example, a virtual security gate barring the likes of Google, Facebook, Twitter etc., thus putting itself in the dark. Once again, China hasn’t failed to disappoint, and with the introduction of a new cybersecurity law, businesses around the globe will face a tough time with even more restrictions.

Alternate Billing Modes Gaining Traction Over Traditional Pricing Models in Legal Services

In an effort to step away from the orthodox method of working via billable hours, software giant Microsoft announced last month they are planning to shift 90% of their legal work to retainer-based models, flat fee, capped fee and performance-based models. Microsoft hopes that alternative fee arrangements (AFAs) will encourage deeper partnerships between the company and its outside legal advisors by adopting this ‘on-call’ mode of functioning, which eliminates charging on an hourly basis. Fourteen law firms, including K&L Gates, Latham & Watkins and Sidley Austin, working with Microsoft have agreed to this change and are a part of their renewed program. This measure from Microsoft is expected to spike adoption and implementation of AFAs with other corporations as well.

Is “Google for Jobs” Set to Transform the Recruitment Industry?

It comes as no surprise that tech behemoth Google has added yet another vertical to their portfolio, in the form of Google for Jobs. After targeting multiple sectors like travel, shopping, videos, online advertising, search engine and consumer electronics, Google sensed yet another opportunity in the recruitment industry and launched its own platform called “Google for Jobs.” The recruitment industry currently faces various challenges, including the need to improve efficiency during the recruitment process, time to hire, selecting an appropriate candidate and rising costs. The process of recruiting includes interviewing, scheduling and evaluating a candidate, and costs dearly for companies in the United States. The entire recruitment process has become cumbersome due to the outdated applicant tracking systems (ATS) currently available in the market. Google is planning to consolidate similar job titles in the same group, organized by functional domain.

Changing Landscape in the Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) Industry

Due to ever-changing regulations, political situations, changing markets and business needs, many industries are in constant flux. The business process outsourcing (BPO) industry is no exception, and there are many factors altering the face of the current BPO industry—the advent of artificial intelligence (AI), the rise of virtual workforce, and the emergence of new hubs, just to name a few.

Airbnb – Disrupting the Travel Industry, One Partnership at a Time

Airbnb continues to gain traction in the corporate travel marketplace, as it announced in July 2017 that businesses users with access to Concur can make booking accommodations without exiting the expense management platform. This move represents an extension of the existing partnership between Airbnb and Concur dating back to 2014, when Airbnb integrated into Concur’s TripLink service. This partnership enabled business travelers to use TripLink to make direct bookings on Airbnb while their data automatically synced with Concur’s expense reports and travel itineraries.

After Relentless Cyber-Attacks on Businesses, The Cyber-Insurance Market Booms

With cyber-attacks becoming the norm these days, even threatening to expand into a global epidemic, cyber-risk insurers across the globe are seeing organizations and end users scramble for protection from possible data and information security disasters. While reported global incidences of cyber security breaches have been steadily rising at a year-on-year rate of 30-40% since 2015, cyber insurance companies have struck gold. Per experts, the annual global cyber-insurance premium spend stands at $2-3 billion in 2017 and is poised to touch $14 billion by 2022.

The Rise in Mergers & Acquisitions in Benefits Outsourcing

Today, acquisitions have become a key strategy adopted by corporations to increase market share, boost revenue and reduce overhead costs. Mergers and acquisitions are not only restricted to mainstream industries such as pharmaceutical, food/beverage, and crop sciences, but also in indirect spend segments such as HR, IT and Marketing. For example, Google has acquired more than 200 companies since the start of the millennium. The HR benefits outsourcing industry has also jumped on the bandwagon with acquisitions such as Ascender acquiring NGA’s Australia and New Zealand business.

Impact of Cyber-Attacks on Law Firms

Recently, many companies were left crippled by the “Petya” ransomware attack, which resulted in large-scale implications across industries. Rosneft (Russia’s top oil producer), A.P. Moller-Maersk (Danish shipping giant), WPP (world’s biggest advertising company), Merck & Co (leading pharmaceutical company), and Saint Gobain (French construction materials company), just to name a few, were all impacted by this latest version of malware targeted at corporations. A.P. Moller Maersk’s 17 shipping container terminals were hacked, with two systems in Rotterdam and 15 in other parts of the world, leading to widespread disruptions.

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