$19B+ Private Equity Firm Drives Value Creation at Mining Portco by Partnering with Graphite to Address Multiple Talent Gaps

The Client 

Building Meaningful Businesses

Focused on four vertical markets, this private equity firm, with over $19 billion in cumulative committed capital, invests in companies that demonstrate a clear potential for building long-term value and generating superior returns. Located in Northern California, the PE firm’s portcos span consumer, financial services, industrial, and high-tech companies.

The Situation

Multiple Expertise Gaps Identified

With a multinational mining portco embarking on numerous transformation projects, the PE firm’s operating executive, in collaboration with key stakeholders at the portco, identified the lack of critical expertise in multiple departments for achieving its business goals. 

After further analyzing and defining the portco’s strategic workforce plans, the PE firm identified three key talent gaps: 

  • An individual with experience establishing and directing an effective project management office (PMO) that would coordinate all of the portco’s initiatives and ensure the required efficiency, productivity, and cost-saving goals were met.
  • An IT project manager experienced with technology transformations, particularly consolidating the analysis and reporting functions of multiple ERP systems using an enterprise performance management (EPM) solution.
  • An experienced lean manufacturing reliability engineer who could support a supply chain optimization project.

To fill the required roles, the Operating Executive decided to kick things off by hiring a senior PMO manager. He pursued traditional methods for hiring an experienced professional for the role, but this approach proved too slow and inefficient. Seeking a faster, more cost-effective option for acquiring talent, the Operating Executive reviewed the market and decided to investigate Graphite.

The Solution 

Gain Experienced, On-Demand Talent to Fill Critical Gaps

When the Operating Executive contacted Graphite to learn more about its proven on-demand model, the PE firm was assigned to an experienced account manager who explained Graphite’s streamlined process. This included a two-tiered vetting process for identifying and presenting 2-4 curated independent experts, typically within 24-48 hours, many of whom bring deep expertise working at some of the world’s leading consulting firms.

Impressed with the quality of available talent, the Operating Executive decided to proceed with leveraging Graphite. He then developed a requirements list. 

Curated candidates in hours

Once the account manager obtained the PE’s requirements, he turned to Graphite’s AI-powered platform to access a pool of over 9,000 independent experts and obtain a shortlist of qualified candidates. The account manager further curated the list and, within 36 hours of obtaining the requirements, presented the top two candidates.

Using the Graphite in-app messaging and live virtual meeting tools, the Operating Executive, in collaboration with key leaders at the portco, vetted the two shortlisted candidates and quickly selected the expert with the best combination of skills. Next, a dedicated customer success team member was assigned to the PE firm. He smoothly coordinated the onboarding processes for the PMO expert, all within days of the Operating Executive’s initial contact.

The Result:

PMO Expert Onboarding Leads to Expanded Partnership

As the project with the PMO expert proceeded, the outcomes were proving so successful that the Operating Executive decided to seek Graphite independent experts for the two remaining mining portco needs: an IT Project Manager for the EPM consolidation and the Reliability Engineer for the Operations team to support the supply chain optimization project.

In addition, the Industrial Operating Executive introduced Graphite to his peers and recommended they engage with Graphite’s independent experts to drive investment returns in their verticals.

Successfully fulfilling multiple portco talent needs

Today, the PE company considers Graphite, a trusted business partner that can quickly and cost-effectively help portcos fix issues and fill gaps by supplying highly-qualified on-demand talent. 

For each project-based need, Graphite provides white-glove service for smoothly selecting,  onboarding, and rolling off experts once goals are met. In addition, Graphite’s AI-powered platform eliminates administrative overhead for each portco by supplying an intuitive in-app invoicing and payment interface. The platform also provides detailed project tracking, including deliverables, tasks completed, and work hours submitted. 

For the PE firm, the revenue-enhancing benefits of the first three projects at the mining portco include:

Operations Process Improvements - During the 6-month project, the selected independent expert bought 18+ years of industrial and PMO experience at respected consulting firms to:

  • Establish a comprehensive, high-quality PMO that defines and maintains project management standards for the mining company.
  • Direct PMO staff and activities to complete successful operations optimization projects,  including business analysis, forecasting and projections, and financial planning & analysis (FP&A)
  • Work on-site at the mining portco headquarters 2x weekly.

Technology Modernization - For this 12-month project, the selected independent expert brought 30+ years of Project Management experience at companies such as Goodyear and Diebold Nixdorf to

  • Lead project management for implementing the EPM solution.
  • Work across units in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico.
  • Provide advanced, comprehensive business and financial analyses.
  • Work on-site at the mining portco headquarters 2-3x per month.

Supply Chain Optimization - During this 6-month project, the selected independent expert brought nearly 20 years of reliability engineering experience in lean manufacturing along with deep expertise in applying Six Sigma Black Belt expertise.. The independent expert leveraged this experience to

  • Determine options for improving productivity and achieving process efficiencies.
  • Perform various analyses and developed action plans for achieving cost advantages while maintaining machinery reliability.
  • Assist with developing enterprise-wide Condition-based (CBM)/Predictive maintenance (PdM).
  • Lead, coach, motivate, train, and engage work teams.
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$19B+ Private Equity Firm Drives Value Creation at Mining Portco by Partnering with Graphite to Address Multiple Talent Gaps

Strategic partnership with Graphite enables private equity firm to quickly and cost-effectively help portcos address gaps by enabling access highly-skilled on-demand talent.

Skills Onboarded
About the Client
Project Duration
Independent Experts Hired
Project Booking Value


Key roles identified and onboarded

Eager to onboard a team that could achieve results within six months, the client and their dedicated Graphite account manager partnered to determinze the specifications for each of the four roles. They were:

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Gabriela Ziffermann

Digital Messaging Program Manager
  • Provide expertise in creating digital two-way communications compliant with federal government regulations (via text, email, and online portal)
  • Working with internal developers and product managers to implement the messaging rollout.
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