Q&A with Gretchen Lowery: Leading Organizational Change

One of the Company’s top priorities is executing a digital transformation strategy that accelerates innovation, making it easy and quick to connect everything. Our Core Systems Modernization Project will drive interconnection by integrating multiple systems, including those used by Finance and Procurement, into a single system to streamline access to information. The project requires a paradigm shift in perspective, processes and technologies – and leading our change management efforts is Gretchen Lowery, Director of Business Transformation & Organizational Change Management.

Big shout out to Gretchen for spending some time with us and helping us better understand Core Systems Modernization!

Can you tell us more about your career journey with Republic Services and your new role on the Core Systems Modernization Team?
I fell in love with the high-ownership environment at Republic, the passion of the field leaders and the “beautiful complexity” of the waste and recycling industry as a consultant during the LA City Franchise implementation. As a result, I was blessed to join the Republic team in Corporate Operations and really loved traveling to the Areas and Business Units to better understand the drivers and challenges of our business as I helped develop and deploy initiatives like Route Ready. The adventure continued as I was encouraged to explore the General Manager track, landing first in Lexington and most recently Memphis where I was honored to lead amazing teams as I expanded my understanding into landfills, recycling centers, maintenance, sales and unions. Now, I am excited to have the opportunity to shape the way we deploy Change to all of those talented people I have met along the way, to truly ensure that it helps each one of them be successful.

How would you describe the magnitude and scope of the Core Systems Modernization Project?

I like to describe it as modernizing the foundation and infrastructure of a house…while you are still living in it! Just picture both the messy, hard work and amazing benefits of replacing the slab, wiring and pipes of an older home with the best that the smart home of today has to offer.

The Core Systems Modernization Project is really exciting – and quite the undertaking! How can we all help in the success of this project?

There is going to be a lot more to come along these lines in the months to come, so stay tuned. But for now, I really would like all employees to help us build a culture that recognizes how exciting it is to be part of such a transformational time in our Company, a culture that proactively voices ideas about the possibilities for us to work smarter, and a culture that it willing to roll up our sleeves and do the sometimes hard and sweaty work of replacing a foundation. This is a chance for us all to be on the front line.

It’s great to know that each of us has a role in our digital transformation journey.  So, let’s say we’re chatting again in six months or even a year, what would you like to be able to say about the Core Systems Modernization Project? How do you think we will be doing?

The thing I get most excited about is considering the awesome talent we have in the people here at Republic, and then you think about the power of connecting them all together with the information that they need to make decisions, and it starts to open up another level of possibilities. I want to be able to say after deployment, that the Core Systems Modernization Project was a springboard for our resourceful leaders and teams to move the business forward in ways we couldn’t have imagined.

Finally, what’s the timeline for the rollout and what departments will be part of Wave 1?

Wave 1 is scheduled to go live in February 2022 and will replace our foundational financial systems (Lawson/Essbase) and procurement system (ePro). So just think about the people that this will benefit: Everyone in finance, anyone who purchases/receives anything, anyone who manages spend, anyone who looks at a P&L or other financial reports, as well as anyone who helps keep the Workday hierarchy up to date! So glad for us to be moving forward together!

Stay updated and informed about this project by visiting the Core Systems Modernization SharePoint site here.