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Posts Tagged 'mergers'

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How LDCs can foster internal control effectiveness and risk awareness

In recent years, a spate of mergers across Canada has allowed Local Distribution Companies (LDC) to cut costs, improve service to local communities and drive operational efficiencies. To unlock the full value of a merger, however, the merging companies need to integrate their processes—and that starts by standardizing their internal controls. Without a streamlined internal controls environment, employees may struggle to understand which processes to follow, which can heighten enterprise risk—especially if key activities fall through the cracks. To mitigate these risks, LDCs may want to begin by automating their controls. In addition to reducing the errors associated with manual processes, automation typically delivers significant efficiencies, including speeding up routine processes while minimizing the unsanctioned workarounds that sometimes lead to fraud. At the same time, it’s important to recognize that this isn’t a “once and done” exercise. To keep pace in a ...

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Cultural integration: The secret ingredient to merger success

Mergers can be an excellent opportunity for LDCs to reduce costs and better serve their respective communities. To succeed, however, mergers must make sense not only on paper, but from a cultural perspective as well. Culture is intangible and difficult to articulate by people who live and breathe it everyday. In a highly-regulated industry like Ontario’s energy sector, with workforces that are frequently unionized, ensuring cultural alignment between two companies is often easier said than done. Waiting for regulator approval can be a lengthy and slow-moving process—one that can put significant constraints on how and when the organizations conduct cultural assessments. In a similar vein, depending on a union’s collective agreement, it can also be difficult to bring employees together, job share or conduct employee town halls to uncover cultural concerns and put employees at ease before the merger is approved. Nevertheless, a cohesive transition hinges on a smooth cultural integrati ...

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