Global HR vision nets awards for consumer goods giant Unilever

Unilever’s multi-million pound HR outsourcing deal with Accenture dominated the inaugural HR Outsourcing Association (HROA) Europe awards in Brussels last week.

The global consumer products giant scooped the Practitioner of the Year Award, while outsourcing firm Accenture won the Provider of the Year Award. And even the firm that advised on the deal, EquaTerra, went home with a trophy after claiming the Adviser of the Year Award.

Unilever and Accenture worked together to transform the manufacturer’s HR function across 100 countries and 200,000 employees. The seven-year contract covers services from recruitment to payroll processing and performance management. The full value of the deal is unknown.

The agreement is part of the company’s ‘One Unilever’ programme designed to transform its HR operations through greater efficiency. Accolades poured in throughout the two-day conference that followed the awards.

Richard Crespin, HROA executive director, said: “The Unilever deal validates the trend that many global companies now consider HR outsourcing an important part of maximising their performance.”

Alan Hopwood, an adviser at Equaterra, said: “This deal has broadened the scope of HR outsourcing. The industry can now see it is possible to outsource a broad range of a company’s HR processes on a global scale.”

Unilever’s president, Kees van der Graaf, was also praised by the EU for the firm’s commitment to tackling obesity.

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