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Bekaert: 30,000 employees worldwide, one global HR strategy

  • Flexso

In 2013, Bekaert, the world’s largest steel wire solutions provider, was in search of the ideal roadmap to global HR alignment. Since then, Flexso for People has helped the steel firm implement SAP SuccessFactors modules for learning, recruitment, talent and succession and performance management. In 2019, the most recent step in the roadmap went live: Employee Central.

Building on a history of success

Almost seven years ago, Bekaert executive leaders made the key decision to implement a global HRIS solution, choosing SAP for the foundation. Their goals:

  • to have all HR master data in a single platform;
  • to forge a strong link between SAP ERP and SuccessFactors;
  • to benefit from the scalability and flexibility of the cloud;
  • to avoid making unnecessary hardware investments;
  • to cover all talent processes with one solution.

Today, the company can look back with Flexso for People on a job well done: the SAP SuccessFactors Learning, Recruitment, Talent & Succession and Performance Management modules have been delivering results for years. 

Introducing Employee Central

The next step in the HR transformation was an overarching solution that ties all HR processes, systems, tools and data together into one, cohesive whole.

“Traditionally, the HR team does far too much transactional work”, says Jorn Waterschoot, global HRIS manager at Bekaert. “One of the main drivers in our business case is to empower HR to step away from administration, data management and repetitive tasks and move into a strategic and tactical role. The second driver is the need to meet analytics needs of HR and Finance by freshening up our global data model, and thirdly, we wanted the information concerning our total workforce contained in one system.”

Because Bekaert already had strong expertise in SAP, Employee Central was the clear choice.

Global insights

Thanks to Employee Central, moving forward, Bekaert can count on streamlined, digital, global HR tools and processes supporting their 30,000 employees across the globe. The solution centralises employee data while making it very easy to tailor to local facilities and teams. Even more, HR management can report on Bekaert’s full workforce and manage employee lifecycles and access rights in a comprehensive way.

The Bekaert HR team operates on a key principle: they only store employee data in Employee Central when it fulfils at least one of these criteria:

  • the data is necessary for global reporting
  • the data steers a global process, including employee identification
  • the information is necessary to unlock self-service capabilities
  • the information is needed for value-adding interfacing between tools and solutions

“While it’s still early in the rollout – only one-third of our employees are currently in the new system –, in China, we can already see the immediate benefits of the system’s user friendliness”, Jorn goes on to say. “We expect the reporting and analytics dashboard to have big impacts in the coming months.” 

Your partner for global HR transformation

Bekaert chose Flexso for People not once but three times for its HR transformation projects, thanks to the team’s deep expertise in SAP and digital HR transformation as well as as a strong cultural fit.

“We’ve been working together since 2013. Not only is Flexso for People experienced with implementations of this scale in Belgium, their consultants stay with their customers from the preparation phase all the way to aftercare – this is of huge value for us”, Jorn asserts. “Bekaert’s relationship with Flexso for People is symbiotic, and we continue to be very happy with our way of working together.”

When it comes to SAP, SuccessFactors, Employee Central and HR transformation in general, our team has all the implementation experience needed for a smooth, high-impact project. Find out more about how we have helped our customers better support their people with value-adding technologies by subscribing to our newsletter.

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