back to article Sopra Steria exec on warpath as its UK Government profit crashes ... by millions

Sopra Steria's UK head of the Government division has delivered a motivational speech to his staff in which he, er, blames them for a multimillion-pound shortfall in forecast profit for 2018 and demands instant results. "The Government Sector is in an extremely difficult position with respect to our ability to meet our full …

  1. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    "our on-account farming has simply stopped"

    Oh that is a bad idea indeed. You can't stop farming, you might miss bonuses. And if you don't take care, your chests will fill up and then you'll lose crops.

    Gotta keep on top of your farming, that's the truth.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: "our on-account farming has simply stopped"

      Great to see despite hard times, Sopra upper management's ability to spout meaningless management-speak drivel remains undiminished since I was unfortunate enough to work there. I suggest he restructures his thinking and interfaces with staff if he has the bandwidth.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Even I can see that ... from 50 thousand feet above you....

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Churn Uptick

      Great job. What that speech will have ensured is that all the competent staff have decided they've had enough and are now looking for new jobs. That will in turn lead to a further deterioration in ability to deliver.

      Of course, when he is fired^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^Hresigns, he'll get a golden parachute and the disaster he caused will in no way have been his fault, and he will move on to mismanage somewhere else.

  3. Zippy´s Sausage Factory

    So is there less government pork to go round, or are they just not hogging everything and digging their noses deep enough into the trough?

    Y'know, if we're going to use farming metaphors here...

  4. Hans Neeson-Bumpsadese Silver badge

    His assessment was that a "significant element of this problem" is that Sopra Steria isn't seeing a return on the investment in contract development, driven by the "client management and consultancy teams".

    Paraphrased:"The sales guys are wonderful but the actual workers have let us down". A depressingly familiar message from those who don't understand what actually how much the commercial part of a business seems to work in conflict with, rather than in support of, the people who acctually provide the products and services.

    1. The Pi Man

      Paraphrased, we know we signed up to the deal as a loss leader but we aren’t fleecing the customer with the non-contract additional work.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Just a loss leader or is the failure to meet targets caused by an unpredicted failure in Q3 or “excellent management” addressing failures to meet targets in H1 by significantly increasing targets in H2?

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Wait till the US heavies ride in ...

    You think they're going to take losses due to Brexit lying down ?

    It'll be sueballs everywhere.

  6. nematoad Silver badge

    Typical management.

    "The exec said he had been forced, in the day before the memo was sent, to explain to his boss, CEO John Torrie..."

    Or in other words "I've had my arse kicked, now it's your turn."

    Pathetic, why not try to understand the problem instead of foaming at the mouth and blaming everyone but yourself.

    If I had shares in this company I would be selling them immediately.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Typical management.

      You'd be too late, the shares already started tanking at the back end of July, it looks to me to be as the result of a large block of sell transactions. Possibly as a result of foreknowledge of this information, who can say? (not me, that's why it's anon)

  7. trevorde



    1. Jay 2

      Re: Translation

      That's *exactly* how I read it too.

  8. anothercynic Silver badge

    "From my 50,000 feet position"...

    ... Oh, you're in an F-15, are you? Or is that a U2?

    I hate hate hate poncy overblown terminology like this. DO. EFF. OFF. With it! Jesus Mary and Joseph!

    UGH! *walks off ranting about poncy execs who need a smacking for using such terminology*

    1. MOV r0,r0

      Re: "From my 50,000 feet position"...

      But surely he needs to define the key attributes of his emergent themes and mandate guidelines to provide rafts of measures to drive pictures of excellence through a robust organising framework leveraging relative advantage, compatibility, complexity, observability and triability in his best of breed world class solutions going forward?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: "From my 50,000 feet position"...

        True Dat

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: "From my 50,000 feet position"...

          I’m more middle management, cruising around 25,000 ft...

          Best played with headphones in a work environment...

    2. JMiles

      Re: "From my 50,000 feet position"...

      Nope. He’s at 50k feet with no parachute and the minions below are wondering if they’re gonna get hit by his shit or his corpse first.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The beatings will continue...

    ... until morale improves.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    It's time to ringfence the unicorn, stick a flagpole up it, and see if it unfurls :)

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    50,000 feet...

    ... and they all stink.

  12. John Smith 19 Gold badge

    "The random punishment beating will continue until morale improves."

    Is that what you really need in your life?

  13. Dan 55 Silver badge

    Well that bounced back and slapped you in the face

    Fieldhouse said he recognised many of the senior sales staff are new to Sopra Steria and "still getting to grips with our organisation".

    Oh, did you fire everyone and get graduates in at a third of the price by any chance?

  14. NogginTheNog


    ‘Nuff said >:-(

  15. Mike 137

    "Confirmation of the financial state of play went down like a lead balloon with top brass."

    A lead balloon goes down very well. It's up it has problems with.

  16. Chris Coles

    "I don't want to hear explanations,"

    " "I don't want to hear explanations," says it all!

  17. FozzyBear Silver badge

    So, Um. You get dragged into the CEO's office to explain the shortfalls.

    What exactly were you doing in the weeks and months beforehand?

    How were you so out of touch with your responsibilities that you were not aware of these shortfalls beforehand? (So you could work with your team to take corrective action)

    You are the manager are you not? Does their performance highlight their ineptitude, or more your complete and utter lack of management and leadership skills ?

    From what I can see your an overpaid arsehole who lacks even some of the most basic management skills and even less in leadership.

  18. tojb

    the Carillon of paper shufflers

    Otherwise known as the French answer to crapita.

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Wow. It's almost as if the staff and colleagues who you have shown complete disregard and contempt for over the past 12 months don't want to go to the extra mile and win additional business for you. Who'd have thought it.

  20. This post has been deleted by its author

  21. This post has been deleted by its author

  22. Rb22c

    Good Management Takes Responsibility

    This article sums up perfectly the issues facing the Sopra Steria Government sector.

    Whilst everyone accepts that difficult decisions need to be taken, the way in which recent decisions were implemented were incompetent at best. The government sector has been left with a team suffering low morale, depleted knowledge of key government customers and critical systems/processes. As a result Sopra Steria is now struggling to turn around the decline and has managed to accelerate it.

    I worked for the company for over 20 years and it was with great sadness that I decided along with others to leave following the recent redundancies and changes to top management. This article further highlights that management remains oblivious to the knowledge vacuum and morale issues that they have created. Without an experienced motivated workforce it will be difficult to quickly rebuild the sector.

    Continually blaming hard working staff is not the answer, good management takes responsibility and leads from the top.

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