A HISTORY OF TRANSFORMATION
“Twenty years ago,” Swan noted, “there were less than 200 employees in this capability, with a more limited scope of services offered, and all of them based in Wichita. They served an organization that was less than one-sixth the size of today’s Koch Industries.”
Twelve years ago, KBS launched an effort to bring together the infrastructure teams for FHR, KII Human Resources, and the newly acquired INVISTA and Georgia-Pacific teams. In 2013, the year Koch acquired Molex, KBS began establishing sites in Europe and Asia.
“Today,” Swan said, “we have 1,800 employees in 20 countries supporting a global workforce of 130,000 employees in more than 70 countries. All these acquisitions — including Guardian and, most recently, Infor — have forced us to evolve our capabilities in ways that benefit a bigger and much more complex organization.”
And that, Swan says, is the essence of KGS’s existence. “We are a collection of shared service capabilities partnering with and serving Koch companies to create superior value.”
Swan believes the COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the importance of preparation and transformation. “The fact that so many of our office-based employees have been able to work remotely is because we were prepared before this crisis hit,” Swan said.
“With the support of the Koch companies we had already rolled out Office365 collaboration tools, which helped forge a path for future software and cloud strategies. Last December we helped launch a new, global platform for our HR team to use in supporting employees. It’s easy now to see the value of establishing operations outside the U.S. that can help ensure our ability to provide support functions without interruption.”
Through the success of projects like these, “and our commitment to learning through mistakes and failures along the way,” Swan is proud of how KGS has continually transformed and improved. “That’s never going to stop.”
Swan believes KGS is now at a tipping point. “We have more employees outside the U.S. than within.” That’s why the launch of Koch Global Services, with its new approach and new commitment to service, is more than just a name change.
“It’s a way of bringing focus to who we are as a global organization. It simplifies the way our customers can engage with their shared service provider. It also enables KGS employees to more easily connect with how they’re expected to work.
“KGS and 'All in. All Together.' better represents who we are and who we are striving to be.”