The mission is clear: Increase your efficiency!

The Pilot

The economic environment and the conditions that companies are working in are constantly changing. Managers that want to steer their ships safely whilst passing through fog banks and mastering currents and bad weather require data that enables them for the right decisions under pressure and within a short time period. As Interim Manager I will actively support you in steering your company – regardless whether at assisting for new strategy goals, improve processes within your organization or hands-on development of models and KPI systems. I will ensure you have the best transparency and accuracy to make proper decisions. My goal: Noticeable efficiency gains and cost reductions My target: Improve YOUR success

Planning is the chance to actively steer your own future

Manager. Teamplayer. Analyst.

Thomas Meyer – the profile

The basis for my pronounced execution and result driven acumen has been laid in various finance positions of small and medium sized companies or subsidiaries with international parents. As CFO I was driving the change management and implemented new structures and improved results substantially, in particular the working capital. Operationally, I have developed and implemented new reporting systems, controlling tools like budgets or forecast and its analysis or harmonized the reporting to the parent company.

A wide range of experiences you can rely on. I need only a short period of familiarization for any workflow. I combine both the benefits of a team player with my experiences as manager with strict quality standards. That enables me for a positive and fruitful collaboration throughout functions and hierarchies and leads to positive international project work. Every change has implications to each and every individual. I care for the people involved. Success is a result from all contributions. A mutual agreement on goals and objectives and close cooperation of the stakeholder is key to success. Only an informed and motivated team will realize and keep positive results long term. I use the advantages of a wide network for my work being a member of the Internationaler Controller Verein (ICV), co-founder and leader of the region Westfalen and member of the special working group “Controlling & Quality”. I am well connected to the Controller panel of Otto Beisheim School of Management (WHU). All ensures that I can use the latest knowledge both from an academic as well as from a business perspective.

Companies are only as flexible as their Controlling

The Approach

Not wind direction determines success but how you rig-up. Same to Controlling systems. They need constant refinements reflecting changes in the market and their implications to managerial decisions. Otherwise you will miss the boat. My unbiased approach as independent consultant let me dig into processes, question the obvious and lead to optimized structures. The close cooperation with the people involved, regardless whether from Engineering, Manufacturing, Logistics, Procurement or other areas is key: I speak their language, know their challenges and enable project closure without friction losses. That is the basis for a key performance indicator structure reflecting an interactive workflow with illustrating interdependencies. I develop a tool that gains valuable information in a transparent way leading to accurate decisions. Along the way, further potential savings can be identified. Companies are only as flexible as their Controlling.

Not wind direction determines success but how you rig-up.

Analyzing. Measuring. Steering

The scope

Born in Hamburg, I am aware what sailing is about: you need a high caliber radar and sonar system and a sure instinct for efficiently using the ever alternating dynamics of the wind for your own progress. Analyzing, Measuring, Steering – derived from your company vision, strategy and operative goals I will develop all necessary tool sets. I will focus on the value drivers that make the impact

Value drivers optimized piloting
  • Status-Quo-Analysis
  • Organizational consultancy
  • Development and implementation of planning and reporting systems
  • Budgeting and Forecasting
  • Optimization of structures
  • Optimization of business processes / Six Sigma
Additional modules
  • Identification of saving opportunities
  • Harmonization to corporate books

Applying the Ocean of experiences

Sample of realized projects

Please push the button below for further details.

My analytical thinking is always looking for new challenges. That is the reason for the big variety of projects I successfully completed. Enclosed please find some samples. Therefore: If you want to improve your ship’s navigation, count on my experiences.

Development of an integrated planning system.

Project: Integrated planning system Team: Finance Success: Development of an integrated budget and forecast system (P&L, balance sheet,  cash flow, headcount, capex)

How to convert skepticism into consent. Development of an integrated planning system.

Big companies with big wallets are not that challenged with an acquisition. Transferring the new subsidiary into calm waters look different. It requires a planning system that truly mirrors the facts and individual resources and supports a budgeting process, actual to budget analysis and sound forecasting. This system was just not in place and needed development. Pure numbers without meaning and focus are calling for my creativity and analytical senses. I did a deep dive into the company structure and pinned loose ends, collected data and put them in relation to each other and the matrix organization. I started on a cost center level, evaluated all connections and then enlarged the model for all cost centers, departments and internationally to finally have a sound system with P&L, balance sheet, cash flow, capital investments and non-financial data like headcount. A success story that enabled the company to sail rough waters and created confidence at the parent company. After a short period of skepticism, data were acknowledged as reliable steering information and had been transformed 1:1 into parent’s ERP system.

Development of a Product Cost Handbook.

Project: Product Cost Handbook Team: Engineering, Sourcing, Manufacturing, Logistics Success: despite long sales cycles only 0.4% deviation actual-plan

Tame the data flood. Development of a Product Cost Handbook

A company that wants to be successful is poised having cost transparency as sales prices need to be calculated in a way that both allow reasonable margins and staying competitive. What happens when there is no cost information available? That was the case at a machinery company I like to report here. First, I have analyzed all processes that contribute to the costing in order to create a system that delivers reliable data. I met all relevant stakeholders like Engineering, Sourcing, Manufacturing or Logistics and gathered all scattered input from various systems. A data flood that was in need for structure and had to be maintained as a repetitive process flow. Other important factors like changing economic environment or currency fluctuations, sales and sourcing cycles were incorporated. The result: Components were tracked and traced from the cradle to the grave. As part of the product cost handbook I have attached individual price tags to every component, from the big gearbox to the small nut, all have now a cost accuracy not seen before. The variance between actual cost to cost that had been fixed at margin approvals in customer contracts was only 0.4% – despite their long lead times. No surprise that I received the request to implement my process at the Chinese subsidiary. As well a success story.

Development of a sub-parent reporting.

Project: Development of a local reporting into parents’ structure. Team: Finance Success: Transferring local books into corporate books from scratch, on time

German data in American style. Development of corporate books in local ledger.

“Transforming” – that is the key word that describes the acquisition of a German company by an American conglomerate. I frequently travelled to the US headquarter to start the project and guarantee its success. I closely cooperated with my colleagues on site and remotely. The positive thing: though raised in different nations and cultures, we talked the same language – verbally, strategic and operational. That was indeed required to successfully finalize the “transformation” – translate books originated in the German standard HGB into corporate books following US-GAAP and integrate into HQ reporting standards. After a thorough analysis of the status quo structure we decided for a new setup. I defined the chart of accounts and cost center structure, capex and allocation accounting and integrated FX accounting and reporting. All data were then translated into a mapping module and reported upstream. German data on your fingertips in US mode. A Best Practice quality as corporate acknowledged – and used my processes and tools for the next acquisition.

Cost cutting of specific project cost

Project: Cost cutting of specific project cost Team: Project Management, Logistics, Engineering, Finance Success: Significant cut of project cost. Savings resulting from an interdisciplinary effort, coordination on remote construction site, increased customer satisfaction

Decreasing cost – increasing customer satisfaction. Cost cutting of specific project cost

Big components travelling from all over the world for the installation of 40 large-scale units – many uncertainties can delay progress of the project or stop it at all. Transport, backlog issues or even theft at remote sites are only a few items that cost soar. Unless, all work on the construction site is well organized and monitored. You just know when components are arriving despite its remoteness. Only that enables you to coordinate heavy cranage on time and allow flexibility to rearrange plans – resulting in an efficient use of resources without downtime cost, avoiding ‘muda’. Especially when you have remote projects without hardly any infrastructure – a real key differentiator. A logistical complex task that requires the combined efforts of Logistics, Engineering, Finance and Project Management. I jointly designed solutions that attached GPS transmitter to major components and married their broadcast to the ERP system and into a newly developed APP. A new transport device enhanced significantly load and unload in a safe and cost saving manner. The APP provides real time overview of all to be delivered items, allows documentation and helps tracing potential thefts. The success: the cost structure of projects were decreased by 20%, representing a saving of over Euro 20 million. As cost went down, customer and on-site staff satisfaction went up. This milestone approach could be transferred to all the other construction sites.

Harmonisation of Product Cost Calculation

Project: Harmonisation of Product Cost Calculation Team: Operations Controlling, Finance, Production Success: Cutting 60% of cost centers, harmonized calculation method using SAP, clean master records

Survive in de-regulated markets. Harmonisation of the European product cost calculation

Companies that had operated for years under a regulated regime have difficulties to adapt their internal processes to the new market environment. Old habits have to pass a stress-test. There are no guaranteed margins any longer and upcoming fierce competition is pushing down sales prices even further: Having a clear idea of cost is becoming vital for required strategic decisions. Starting point of this project had been the complex as-is derived from acquisitions, their different cultural background and SAP setup differences that led to private calculations outside of the system. Hardly the basis for any fair and comparable judgement of products nor plants. Following a sound analysis, a blueprint had been set of actions: the definition of product cost and their components and responsibilities, harmonising a reduced number of cost centers, setting up correspondent work centers and matching fixed assets and technical objects, establishing new activity types and routings and their tariffs. All done for all European sites and within the SAP system. That is the reliable basis for transparent and harmonized calculations and strategic decisions.  

Further samples of my realized projects
  • Sub’s reporting after carve-out
  • Engineering New Product Development reporting (add’l Power Query)
  • Due diligence work at seller’s side
  • Sourcing audits at a mechanical engineering site in Spain
  • Outsourcing of accounts payable to Hungary
  • Implementation of ex-ante and ex-post calculation for software engineers
  • Definition of a global e-Services system and a Sourcing system
  • Finance member in a successful acquisition of a tower supplier
  • Development of a customer metric reporting
  • Seminar series “Finance for Non-Finance”