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Highlights and Trends in the HRO Market for H1 2013: Part One

Now that H1 2013 is complete, it is time to recap on highlights and trends in the HRO world.

Overall Activity

There was a healthy number of new contracts awarded across all HRO service lines in H1 2013. There was, however, an increase in organizations changing their existing service provider, particularly within benefits administration and RPO.

For the last few years, attention has been on the mid-market as an area for growth within HRO; and in H1 2013, the majority of activity reported was in the mid-market.

Beyond HRO, the number of HR software contracts signed globally was up substantially y/y. For example, in the U.S., ADP was awarded a contract for its Vantage HCM platform by The Paradies Shops covering 4k employees. In the U.K., Ceridian gained traction with its AE module with supermarket chain Asda for 175k employees.

Payroll

Despite being a mature service line, payroll outsourcing does not disappoint. The biggest news reported in H1 2013 would have to be ADP’s acquisition of Payroll S.A., which will expand its LATAM payroll capabilities to Chile, Argentina and Peru. ADP already had in-country services in Brazil, and had capabilities through GlobalView and Streamline to serve multinationals in other LATAM countries.

Other news within payroll includes Acrede opening an office in Singapore to expand its global payroll reach into Asia-Pacific. Growth opportunities in the region include Japan and South Asia-Pacific.

RPO

The RPO market continues to be hot with signings in the U.S., U.K. and China, and about 20% of contract activity being  multi-country deals.

The level of M&A activity was consistent with H1 2012, but the level of RPO partnerships has dwindled. Nevertheless, RPO vendors were busy expanding service offerings and delivery capabilities, and launching new websites. Some examples include:

  • Randstad Sourceright launching an RPO integrated assessment program
  • Manpower U.S. launching a multi-channel delivery model
  • Ochre House launching a COE to drive innovation
  • Randstad Sourceright opening a shared services center in Budapest
  • Hays launching a new mobile website
  • AMN Healthcare launching a redesigned website.

Although technically within H2, it is timely to mention the Pinstripe and Ochre House merger.

Learning

After a rather long lull, the learning BPO market has shown many signs of improvement. New contracts include Raytheon and GM Korea for content development and training administration services, and delivery of sales and non-technical training.

GP continued its acquisition frenzy focused on strengthening and expanding its geographic footprint with Prospero Learning Solutions (Canada) and Lorien Engineering Solutions (U.K. and Poland). Not to mention Capita’s acquisition of KnowledgePool.

Stay tuned next week for more highlights and trends from H1 2013 that are specific to benefits administration and MPHRO. I’ll also share some insights on what to expect in H2 2013 based on NelsonHall’s recent HRO Confidence Index survey.

Interested in reading the latest HRO news from NelsonHall? Subscribe to our newsletter by clicking here.

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