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For a consumer goods company, controls are a thing of beauty.

When you are one of the largest beauty and consumer goods companies in the world – winning and delivering in markets while managing risks and being compliant with regulations is a constant challenge.

Controls are the lifeblood of a company, whether it’s how your data is backed up, how suppliers are identified and paid, or how expenses are approved. These controls can be difficult to implement and maintain when your company is in constant flux or acquiring new companies that have different, or less mature, controls environments or finance systems. Continue reading the storey of how a consumer industry giant embarked on the positive journey of controls.  Read this report  for in-depth insights.

Taking Control: A consumer industry giant collaborates with Deloitte to forge a state-of-the-art controls programme

The consumer goods company was already very forward-thinking in its approach to develop a controls programme. However, with a range of products in the beauty, well-being, and personal care categories, along with the acquisition of 20 new companies over the last five years, the task at hand was complex.

Collaborating with Deloitte*, the company sought to move to the future of controls  by creating an integrated controls framework, bringing greater efficiency and automation. But before Deloitte could embark on the journey, senior leadership and other stakeholders at the consumer goods organisation needed to see the value of implementing controls and why the status quo wouldn’t serve the business well in the long term.

To tackle this, Deloitte helped them build a case for change by identifying opportunities for a positive change. A big focus of the programme was to foster a positive controls culture by clearly and consistently communicating the ‘why’ behind controls and illustrating how they benefit the business and its people alike. “The business considers risk and controls in many projects they do,” said Lindsay Ashton, senior manager at Deloitte. “We worked together to take an area that can be overlooked and built it into their culture to make the topic more exciting and relatable.”

With leadership convinced, the team set clear design principles for the controls framework and operating model. Following this, the team rolled out a successful pilot! It exceeded the success criteria set for the programme: 70%+ control activities were identified for automation, more than 30% of the controls were rationalised/streamlined, and it created opportunities to reduce the effort per control by more than 20%.

The positive impact of controls

The journey of controls hasn’t ended, it continues creating a positive impact. The successful pilot projects have made the consumer goods organisation feel confident about the programme and reaffirmed senior management’s commitment toward it.

“Achieving these success factors is great for our business,” the risk and controls director said. “And importantly, the improvements will make a fundamental difference to the people operating the controls and implementing the frameworks. Our goal is to make their lives easier with simpler, effective processes and seamless integrations.”

With that said, the risk and controls director urges companies to think beyond the technical aspects of controls and take a broader view by considering the people who ultimately get affected by implementing controls. He further says, “by leaving lines of communications open between risk leaders and those operating the controls, we can solve their problems, achieve business objectives, and build a strong, supportive culture all at once.”



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