Rising Business Services Value to Boost Hungarian Economy

Analysis

Eszter Lukács

In recent years, business services centers have been moving into the Central European region, one after the other. These entities contribute to the performance of their parent companies, as well as that of the economy of the region at an increasing rate – as concluded by Deloitte in its latest study.

According to the study Deloitte conducted together with ABSL Hungary (Association of Business Service Leaders in Hungary), the role of these companies becomes even more prominent in the current economic environment, and Hungarian centers outperform their regional competitors on average.

Service centers in the region have seen spectacular growth over the last 20 years, according to Deloitte's first-ever study specifically assessing the maturity of business services centers in Central Europe. The findings apply to virtually all the countries surveyed (Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, and Hungary). In addition, in the current ever-changing economic environment, the role of business services centers has become even more important as a means of improving operational efficiency, ensuring high service quality and innovation, thus contributing to increasing companies' competitive advantage.

Central Europe has become a key location for service centers, mainly because of its favorable business environment, skilled workforce, and cost-efficiency. At the same time, the Global Business Services (GBS) sector has become indispensable throughout the European Union, accounting for 11% of the EU's GDP.  The good news for Hungary is that the average maturity index of Hungarian business services centers is above the regional average: according to Deloitte’s survey, more than half of the business service centers operating in Hungary are already at a maturing stage of development, with two of them already in the top category.

According to Eszter Lukács, director of GBS Consulting at Deloitte, this shows that the development potential of Hungarian centers is very good.

“Proactive growth strategies, conscious planning, and continuous development are needed to enable service centers to further increase their added value and contribute to the business performance of their parent companies, thus further strengthening the role of Central Europe's economy among GBS locations," she concluded.

As in Central Europe, the business service providers surveyed are the most advanced in work delivery management and the least mature in the organizational dimension, setting the main direction for GBS managers. The analysis also provides a benchmark for companies to assess their performance against industry standards and identify potential areas for improvement.  

The results of the study show that most business services centers in the region are currently in the performing or maturing category, i.e. they are clearly moving up the development pathway. According to respondents, centers are paying particular attention to talent development and technological advances, and are at the forefront of supporting and developing remote working, for example. This makes them important catalysts for the region's economy in these areas, such as talent acquisition and the adaptation of innovative technologies. 

“From a people strategy perspective, mature centers are also seen as ‘engines’ of future talents to business with unique technology capabilities and e2e process knowledge with a closer understanding of business," said Gábor Illés, head of Syngenta business services center, which participated in the research.

He added that above-average service centers not only contribute but are at the forefront of developing and implementing initiatives that benefit their parent companies.

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