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Alight Solutions: 2017 Progress Report & 2018 Vision

 

It has been 10 months since the announcement that Aon was divesting the businesses within its Outsourcing segment to private equity firm Blackstone, and 6 months since Alight was formally launched as a new company, which makes it an ideal time to review its progress and where it is headed in 2018.

By all accounts, it was a smooth transition, with client retention remaining high. But more importantly, the separation allowed the company to create a new identity, departing from its roots as the administrative arm of a much larger global professional services firm to reflect a more modern approach that emphasizes a consultative partnership with its clients.

The consultative partnership approach is becoming increasingly important as more and more organizations seek solutions that go beyond cost reduction to those aimed at solving larger business problems, such as increasing employee engagement and helping employees optimize their benefit selections. With market expectations changing, the line between consulting and administration is blurring, so it’s imperative for suppliers to adapt in order to meet demand for this higher level of service. While Alight is still at the initial phase of its journey to be an impactful advisor, its direction on this front is clear.

Alight’s other key priorities for 2018 include innovation with both its services and technology, as well as creating an engaging user experience, which are better viewed within the context of its two core businesses.

HR & Financial Solutions

Its HR and financial solutions segment is a mixture of hosted legacy HR BPO deals that it continues to support, and its newer cloud-based HR and financial services offering, which includes advisory services, deployment services, AMS support, and HR BPaaS support.

In 2017, Alight experienced continual expansion for its cloud services, including deployments for both Workday HCM and Workday Financials. One of the more significant trends in this business is the company’s growth internationally, including in Europe (largely the Nordics) and APAC.

Over the next year, growth is expected to continue in all regions, with APAC slated to be the fastest growing. More importantly, Alight intends to expand its service support, specifically focusing on services for the mid-market as well as a co-sourced and fully outsourced payroll offering.

Health & Wealth Solutions

Alight’s health and wealth solutions segment contains its legacy benefits administration service offerings, including various H&W services as well as DC and DB administration.

Highlights from 2017 include launching its unified data platform, which aggregates data from multiple sources and will be further enhanced to provide a consumer-centric view of each individual participant served.

2018 investments will focus on expanding the digital user experience, including releasing an enhanced mobile app that will have capabilities for annual enrollment. It will also launch a new integrated partner network on UPoint that will include seven providers in Q1 2018.

It’s clear that Alight’s 2018 vision will include a heavy emphasis on technological developments, especially with the front-end user experience, which is pivotal to address wider business issues as well as expectations from an increasingly diverse workforce. 

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