Payroll (420 employees)
GEFCO is a Franco-Russian company, the shareholders of which are the PSA Group (PSA Peugeot Citroën) and Russian Railways. I must note right away that our main shareholder is the Russian Railways holding, which owns 75% of the shares. At the same time, the head office and management of the GEFCO Group are located in Paris. We work in 47 countries, the staff of the company today is about 13,000 people. Our business is a B2B sphere, and the main pool of clients is industrial manufacturers. As a system logistics integrator (4PL-provider), we carry out all types of transportation that exist in the world. As a 4PL operator, GEFCO acts as an architect of logistics solutions for the client, choosing the best, optimal contractors, building a completely transparent system of logistics costs. 4PL logistics is one of the most promising types of services; most large companies are moving to a similar scheme of work, having appreciated the advantages of an integrated approach to logistics. The central office of GEFCO in Russia is located in Moscow, regional offices are in St. Petersburg, Kaluga, Nizhny Novgorod, Novorossiysk, Vladivostok and Kaliningrad.
As for me personally, I moved to Russia from France long time ago – I have been living and working here for over 20 years. I came to the logistics industry six years ago, before that I worked in mechanical engineering, at Alstom and the Russian concern Transmashholding, and earlier in the construction industry and in the oil industry. As a result, in 20 years I have actually traveled all over the country 🙂 up to Sakhalin, where I have been several times. All these years, my main goal was to find and develop business talents. And despite all the crisis and difficult situations that Russian business has experienced over the years, I believe that I have achieved all my plans.
For the first time I got acquainted with UCMS Group in Alstom. I participated in a serious joint project with RusHydro on renewable energy in Bashkortostan, and your company was an outsourcing partner for Alstom. I remember well our work together, because at that time there was very strong internal control at Alstom, strict and at the same time very reasonable, and I, as an HR representative, was required to demonstrate the work process and points of control. The management was especially attentive to all procedures related to payroll. The task was set to process control not after the salaries being paid, but before payments, which became a serious difficulty for me. And the necessary solution was found with the help of UCMS Group.
At the time of my joining GEFCO, a global payroll outsourcing project was launched in Europe. The main goal was, of course, to bring together as many countries as possible in one project in order to reduce the overall costs of the Group. But the European supplier of our French colleagues was not represented in Russia. Taking into account all the peculiarities of the Russian payroll calculation, it was not possible to work with this partner here, and I suggested considering local players. This is how you were invited to the pool of potential suppliers. At that time, my HR team was very skeptical about the outsourcing scheme. The overall mood was not positive, but it was important for me that the internal team became a full-fledged part of the project. The initial calculations of the project showed that the transition to outsourcing is too expensive for us, especially during the crisis (end of 2014) and the task was postponed, we continued to work in the same mode. However, later it turned out that the employee responsible for this work is often forced to work overtime, therefore, we incurred additional costs, and there were inaccuracies in the initial calculations of the outsourcing project. The work was resumed, and for four years now we have started working together with UСMS Group.
When choosing a partner for an outsourcing project, the ratio of quality/volume of services and the corresponding cost was a weighty criterion. In addition, the experience and recommendations about your work with Alstom have become a big plus for me. I was sure that everything would be done efficiently and on time.
It was important for us that for employees the transition to payroll outsourcing goes unnoticed and without problems. This is exactly what happened.
Periodically, personal participation is required: if there are any non-standard situations that involve additional costs. As an example, work in conditions of force majeure during pandemic. I am grateful for the excellent work of our client manager – when there is a problem, it is solved quite quickly and on time.
I am really pleased with our cooperation.
Now we are waiting from you the development of a self-service employee portal, and together with it all possible electronic services for users, including searching for the necessary information. Holidays, pay slips, online consultations for employees by phone or any other mobile device in a simple and accessible way. GEFCO employs different categories of employees, including drivers. This is a separate group of personnel who do not have access to a computer, only a telephone as the means of communication, so mobile solutions would be very useful. In addition, in current conditions, companies are increasingly striving to calculate the full amount of compensation for work that an employee receives. The decision is reflected in different forms, but most often it is a document on one or two sheets, which indicates everything: salary, various compensations, the cost of trainings. Sometimes companies also consider the cost of a car, gasoline. If you look only at income, everything is in 1C, but for visualization this data still needs to be processed in Excel. It is important for me not only to get the numbers, but also to present them.
Such a document is not needed for all employees, but mainly for “white collars”. Maybe in the future we will extend it to everyone. Logistics is a modern industry that has changed a lot in recent years in terms of digital tools. And now, not only we, but all market players are developing and implementing innovative solutions to increase efficiency and introduce optimal tools for clients. The main trend is digitalization: less paperwork, speed, reliability, clarity. Customers appreciate this very much. And since we try to keep up with the times, you, having special developments, searching for new tools and innovative solutions, become an organic part of our ecosystem, being at the intersection of IT and payroll.
I have already mentioned the human factor: if a company has one specialist who has been doing everything for many years and is performing well, there are still doubts. It is one person and this is the salary for the entire company. To entrust the entire list of tasks to one employee is a big risk for me. And then, why shall we do ourselves what others can do better?
We, as logisticians, say the same to our clients. For example, there are large production companies that have their own logistics, which is great, but for them logistics is just an accompanying internal function. For GEFCO, logistics is a business in which we are professionals with extensive experience and competencies. Payroll is one of the internal work tools, but not the basis of a business. The basis is our people. How professionally and efficiently they work, how they develop, build a career, bring new clients, and so on.
It is surprising. We can even forget that we have a contract with you. And at the same time, the subject of cooperation is the calculation of wages, which is important for everyone, but I have never heard any criticism or complaints about the calculation of salaries. For an HR director, it’s a load that you take off his shoulders. It is important for me that you are doing a great job – you comply with our contract without surprises, right. I am not exaggerating, it really is.
I remember one company which took part in the outsourcing tender, tried to win it quite aggressively and promised quite a lot. It was tempting, but I didn’t believe it. We are not Apple, not Rusal, not oilmen, we are logisticians, we are modest 🙂 The most important thing for me was to ensure the correct and on time payment of salaries. I felt that we would get along. And we got along.