In this new series – Global Mobility Connected – we sit down with Chris Davis-Pipe, Group VP of IT at Crown Worldwide Group, to discuss the value of integrating global mobility ecosystems and key trends that are transforming the industry.
Tell us a little bit about yourself and the services Crown provides.
[Chris]: Crown World Mobility partners with clients across the globe, providing mobility support for their employees. In over 50 years we’ve acquired the expertise, scale and systems to handle the simplest and the most complex relocations, for companies large and small.
I’m based at our Group head office in Hong Kong and have been working in mobility for 20 years. Our focus has been on evolving Crown’s technology solutions in line with the changing needs of the industry.
Considering the size and complexity of the programs that you manage, what are the issues that you are most often requested to address by your clients?
[Chris]: The first issue is helping our clients achieve their strategic objectives, and those of their people, together with a holistic, global approach. Every move has targets for the business as well as the potential to help employees achieve goals of their own. We help implement our clients’ mobility policies from selection to repatriation, and help employees throughout their relocation lifecycle. We leverage our infrastructure to improve coordination and provide dedicated support wherever the client and employee may need us.
Ensuring compliance is another issue – whether that be for compensation, immigration, relocation, home sale, financial services, supply chain or technology, workforce mobility is subject to a complex array of compliance requirements. This requires a great duty of care from the employer to ensure that the employee is handled in a compliant manner, and that the client organization has maintained strict control of their privacy and business compliance obligations throughout the supply chain.
The final issue is making mobility budgets go further. With greater visibility and better informed financial management, Crown helps clients reduce mobility costs without sacrificing value or experience. We deliver insights to improve budgeting and provide the resources to put clients in better control of relocation costs across their program. Our modular service package works with mobility teams, payroll, and tax providers to ensure compliance as well as delivering robust reporting and efficiencies for their business.
What is your relationship with Equus – how is it unique to other vendors you work with?
[Chris]: Crown has a unique partnership with Equus as we collaborate together for our mutual clients’ benefit. Through technology integration we are able to help our clients streamline and simplify their workforce mobility processes, leading to significant savings across the mobility supply chain and an ecosystem where data flows compliantly and seamlessly.
You compete with Equus in some cases, how does this partnership impact that?
[Chris]: We see Crown and Equus as being complimentary rather than competitive. The solutions we have designed together are well-suited to clients who regard an integrated technology ecosystem as a valuable solution. Our mobility management processes are built to enable close interaction with our clients’ Equus solutions.
What information is integrated and how does it benefit your clients?
[Chris]: Service and initiation data is integrated in real-time and benefits our clients by providing information updates at their fingertips for the systems they use most frequently, every day. For services where data is integrated, insights are available to our clients via interactive dashboards, reporting and workflows to proactively drive workforce mobility processes through the relocation lifecycle.
What was the biggest challenge integrating?
[Chris]: The relocation process itself generates a substantial amount of data. The biggest challenge is being able to identify precisely which data points and when they occur, are most relevant to integrate. Developing an integration is a significant undertaking so we seek to ensure we’re integrating what is valuable, when it is valuable, to generate actions and create value for our clients.
What’s one piece of advice you would give clients looking to transform their mobility program?
[Chris]: To achieve the best balance of overall savings, simplicity and experience, I really encourage clients to take a holistic, end-to-end view of mobility transformation and a strategic view of procurement. They should work with providers who are enthusiastic and willing to make the investments in integrated capabilities. These providers will coordinate behind the scenes, generate global insights to drive savings across the whole supply chain and deliver them back to the local mobility customers. Sometimes you can find the best savings where you least expect.
How do you see integration impacting the employee experience?
[Chris]: It provides greater transparency in the relocation process, in the office or when mobile. Critically, it enables the behind-the-scenes teams working all around them to collaboratively deliver services in a more proactive and well-orchestrated way – being there for them right when they need it.
How do you see integrated ecosystems impacting the future of GM?
[Chris]: The future of workforce mobility will be led by those providers who are most tightly integrated, enabling supply-chain simplification and global governance with a local touch. Crown is proud to be leading the way with Equus as pioneers of ecosystem integration. We will continue to invest heavily in this capability for the benefit of our clients and their employees.