Lau Holst Hoffbeck initially feared being lost in a big, bureaucratic machine when it was announced that his workplace, the small supply chain firm Syncronic, would become part of Deloitte. Fortunately, things turned out very differently because of the ‘big firm, small feel’ philosophy.

When Lau Holst Hoffbeck first met the Syncronic team, he worked as a student assistant at Novozymes. After finishing university, he went on to work in the strategic sourcing department at Novo Nordisk. One day, he liked a LinkedIn post by Syncronic partner Stefan Glar-Hammarsund, and he quickly got a reply back:

“I liked working at Novo Nordisk, and it is always a special feeling with your first job after university. Still, I knew I wanted something smaller and more intimate than a global company. So, when Stefan reached out to me on LinkedIn and asked me if I wanted to interview for a job at Syncronic, I immediately said yes.”

In May of 2020, Lau left Novo Nordisk to join Syncronic where he specialised in supply chain planning and transformation, which he still does today. At the time, Syncronic employed around 30 people – quite the change from Novo Nordisk. Lau explains:

“I went from a large organisation with fixed processes for everything to a small organisation with very few processes, but a lot of trust and confidence in the employees. Syncronic was really a close-knit organisation where everyone knew each other. It was exactly the kind of workplace I wanted to join.”

The announcement

It was a sunny day in May of 2021 when the announcement came that Syncronic had been acquired by Deloitte which was looking to strengthen its supply chain practice. At first, Lau was not too keen on returning to a big organisation:

“I am not afraid to admit that I did not like the idea of us joining Deloitte, which I thought would be a big, bureaucratic machine. However, I clearly remember Deloitte’s Nordic SAP leader, David Colgan, explaining to us that although Deloitte is such a massive organisation, it will always keep the autonomy and closeness of a small firm. That philosophy is important to me, and it has remained important to me ever since joining Deloitte. I think it is exactly the right mindset. Essentially, you get the best of both worlds.”

So how was it to join Deloitte? A bit confusing at first, according to Lau, but after a while you settle in:

“The challenge was that we joined Deloitte as a team, which means that no one really knew anything, like how you book a room or print a document. We were really lost in the beginning, but of course as the weeks and months passed, we got used to all the practicalities and new processes, and then one day, they were just part of our everyday lives.”

Huge success in the market

Practicalities aside, the Syncronic team along with the rest of Deloitte’s supply chain specialists have enjoyed massive success in the market – something that is partly due to the COVID crisis. Lau elaborates:

“The pandemic forced almost all companies to rethink their supply chains in order to regain control and build resilience into their organisation. For us, this meant that our services suddenly moved right to the top of the strategic agenda, which was amazing to see. Today, companies are paying much more attention to their supply chain than ever before. They want transparency, control and easy access to data, which is exactly what we can help them achieve – of course with the help of advanced software such as SAP S/4HANA or Kinaxis. We are embarking on some very exciting projects.”

Today, Syncronic is an important part of Deloitte Consulting, and Lau and his colleagues wear their ‘Deloitte shirt’, so to speak, with pride:

"Deloitte is one of the strongest brands in the world, so of course it matters to represent that name. I clearly see that in the market. Our projects are more ambitious than before, our clients are more prestigious, and we can draw from a global network of experts, which is second-to-none. Not that we were not good before, but Deloitte is surely a league of its own, so I am glad the acquisition took place."

And the future? According to Lau, we have only seen the beginning of digital supply chain transformation with so many companies now reinventing their business models and taking leaps into the digital space. For himself, Lau wants to become even better at showing Deloitte’s clients the full spectrum of possibilities for transformation:

“The amazing thing about Deloitte is that we have so many experts to draw from, and it is our job to show our clients what we can do, and how we can take their business to the next level. I want to become better at doing just that – and I am also hoping to get some international experience in the coming years. I am working to make that happen.”

However, for now Lau is happy to see that the entire Syncronic team is busier than ever before:

“We are constantly writing proposals, and winning them as well, which is fantastic. Companies everywhere are reconfiguring for the future, and we are right there to help them. We won’t be out of work anytime soon, that’s for sure.”

Read more about the Syncronic team in Deloitte here.

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