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How the B of A_Exult Deal Came Together

April 1, 2001
When Bank of America signed its 10-year contract with e-HR process managementcompany Exult, they began what some in the industry are calling the "nextlevel" of outsourcing. Although the two companies insist it's a strategicalliance, outsourcing of many basic HR functions is a key component."Whether you call it an alliance, partnership, or outsourcing, there's aninordinately large amount of positioning," says Richard Bell, an analystwith TowerGroup in Needham, Massachusetts.

Here's how the deal was structured:

  1. Outsourcing. The bank will outsource to Exult all the business processesrelating to human resources, such as payroll, accounts payable, and benefits.Other functions being handled by Exult are information technology, delivery ofHR services, and a call center for human resource and benefits information.

  2. Bank of America will handle policy design and strategy and compliance.Personnel managers and executives remaining at the bank will be the point ofcontact for employees with questions or problems. The bank has retained thesemanagers to help employees in person or on the phone.

  3. Portal partners. Exult is taking a variety of HR processes and puttingthem on the Web, so that Bank of America employees can handle a number ofadministrative functions online. The portal is also a revenue source for bothcompanies. Anyone logging on to the site will see Bank of America products andservices advertised, from commercial credit cards to consumer loans. And forBank of America clients looking to outsource certain administrative functions,Exult's services are also advertised.

  4. Assets for equity. Bank of America already had a high-performing workforcein Charlotte, North Carolina, when it finalized the deal with Exult. Because ofthat, Exult-a company looking to grow and establish an East Coast base-took overthe Charlotte facility and 675 former Bank of America employees.

  5. Equity. In return for the instant infrastructure, Bank of America receivedwarrants for Exult stock valued at about $50 million instead of cash.

Workforce, April 2001, p. 53SubscribeNow!