Case Studies

Since Jamesford was founded in 1996, we’ve successfully completed numerous projects in different industry segments.

A selection of those projects is presented here…

Focusing the Sales & Marketing on Key Customers

Background

Our client is a market leader in the UK life & pensions industry. They operate one of the largest pension funds in the UK and sell their products via various channels to market – namely IFA’s, tied agents (Banks and BS) and JV’s. The business is profitable with an enviable track record and strong branding.

However, impending government legislation (Sandler) would mean that the costs of sales and marketing and overheads, previously handled as sales commissions, would be made explicit to would be product purchasers’. Customers would be able to evaluate the product in terms of how much was spent on commissions and how much was being invested in the pension or life product. The industry leaders, quite rightly believed this would lead to increased competition and a squeeze on costs.

Consulting Assignment

The client asked us to look at the sales and marketing division to see how they could improve their effectiveness and reduce the costs of doing business.

Key Project Activities

The programme comprised of the following activities:-

Analysis

  • Key stakeholder interviews – to understand the industry issues, competitive forces, trends and business strategy
  • Customer research – to understand service levels by channel and customer concerns
  • Staff research – to understand organizational barriers and capability
  • Financial analysis – to understand value creation and profitability by customer group

casestudy1

NB. In segment 1 (large Banks and BS) 6 distributors accounted for 37% of ROCE (return on capital employed) and required 30% of distribution costs. Whereas in segment 2 (smaller Banks and BS) 40 distributors accounted for 32% of ROCE and required 39% of distribution costs. The challenge was to balance the business support in relation to the value created.

Recommendation

Our recommendation was to re-organise the Sales & Marketing services, support and structure in proportion to the value derived from each customer group (the existing processes and structure bore little relation to customer value, but rather to historical precendent).

The key points were:-

  • Segment distribution to match the market segment
  • Tier the service offering to match the contribution to profits
  • Segment the service offering to match the importance of the relationship

Implementation

We set up a series of customer change teams to:-

  • Develop service levels and accompanying operational processes by customer group
  • Design a supporting structure for the operational processes. Specify the capability needs for each team. Manage the recruitment of managers and staff into the newly designed teams.
  • Develop and deliver the internal communications to the business
  • Develop and deliver the external communications to customers and stakeholders

Client Benefits

The key customer change programme has the following benefits:

  1. Sales and marketing processes re-aligned to match the value derived from each customer grouping
  2. Organisation re-designed round the key customers
  3. Headcount reduced from 1350 to 870
  4. Regional offices reduced from 40 to 19
  5. Overall budget reduced by 25%
  6. Move from a sales focused culture to a profit focused culture
...

Marketing department reorganisation

Background

The client is a major Life Insurance Company in the UK. They provide pensions, protection and investment products. Distribution is primarily through intermediaries (IFA’s, Tied agents and JV’s) with a small direct sales force.

A number of market trends have created the need to reduce costs, namely:-

  • Cost of regulation – ever increasing compliance requirements driving costs
  • Changing regulation:-
    • “Sandler Products” – introduction of simpler low priced products expected to replace many traditional (more expensive) products
    • De-polaristion – transparent cost and commission leading to lower prices
  • Competition – a change in the relative power between distributors and manufacturers is driving down profit
  • Increasing consumer awareness – creates pressure on prices

As a result of which the client commissioned a leading Strategy Consultancy to review their business model and make recommendations on how they should compete in the future. The report focused on the need to reduce the cost of distribution and made a number of proposals as to how the Sales and Marketing department could reduce these costs.

The client wished to implement these proposals themselves but early on in the process decided they needed some independent help.

Consulting Assignment

The client asked us to help them manage the implementation of the proposals and deliver the savings.

Key Project Activities

Establishment of a change programme with four key objectives:-

  1. Reduce the regional footprint and reduce costs
  2. Segment the customer service offering and reduce costs
  3. Outsource the provision of a direct sales force through a joint venture
  4. Re-organise the marketing department around the new customer service offering and reduce headcount

Programme management and facilitation with the key stakeholders.

Client Benefits

The key benefits were:-
change-management

...

Organising for the Customer

Background

Our client is an autonomous engineering support division for an International oil company. The business supplies engineering support in the shape of strategy, design and project management to the parent (85% of T/O) and third party companies (15% of T/O). Competitive bidding had been introduced for intra-group works in order to ensure an efficient internal corporate market.

Unfortunately, the engineering business had started to loose out to third party bidders for corporate work. This was becoming an increasing trend and the management was concerned that their business may disappear unless something was done.

Consulting Assignment

The client asked us to review their business processes to see why they were loosing out on their bids.

Key Project Activities

We conducted an in depth business review including competitor review, customer survey, operational process review, executive and staff structured interviews.

As the new CEO said “we seem to have lost our focus and our customers know it..”

Having work-shopped the results of the business review with the executive team, the following were agreed:-

  • Strategy:
    • Revised mission, vision and values to focus on the corporate customer
    • Strategy and plan to support the mission
  • Operations:
    • Process simplification to be based on customer needs (as opposed to internal legacy process/systems)
    • Outsource non-core activities to save costs
  • Structure:
    • Re-organised on a matrix basis (eliminating the legacy functional structure) with a focus on customer facing project managers and pools of expert resource
    • Introduction of customer account management role
    • Delayering and elimination of non-value add activities (handled via early retirement and redundancies)
    • Team based management process and incentive scheme
  • Culture:
    • Celebrating great customer service interactions & solutions

And a change programme was developed and implemented to deliver the above.

Client Benefits

The key client benefits were:

  • Savings achieved of 22% which were shared with group clients
  • Group client feedback – very positive
  • Group sales increased
...

Strategic Alignment around Customers

Background

Our client is a National professional membership organisation. Their services cover training, professional qualifications, industry insights, advice and a national voice for the industry. Headquarters are in the South East, with active regional councils for a membership of 13,000. The organisation represents a relatively new profession, with a market potential of over 120,000 and opportunities to extend overseas.

Like all new emerging organisations they faced issues around direction and purpose. The old guard preferred the low risk and profitable trade union style and the youngish turks wanted to pursue a complete professionalisation of their industry to achieve a chartered membership status. These divisions of belief/focus between the active regional base, the members council, the company board and its employees were creating a dysfunctional organisation.

Consulting Assignment

The client asked us to help them to focus the organisation via:

  • The development of an agreed mission, vision and values
  • The development of the strategy
  • With recommendations for change

Key Project Activities

We conducted a series of interviews with the various stakeholder groups:

  • Customers
  • Regional boards
  • Membership council
  • Company board
  • Executives and staff

From the results we developed a straw model Mission/Vision/Values statement and work-shopped this with members of the membership council, board and staff.

Having agreed the focus, values and objectives for the organisation we went onto develop the strategy, operational improvements, supporting structure and management process changes. Once again these were work-shopped to ensure acceptance and buy in.

Client Benefits

The result was a 92% acceptance of the newly developed focus and strategy from the various stakeholder groups (when we put it to the vote).

...

Support cost reduction in Financial Services

Background

Our client is a medium sized player in the Financial Services Industry. Their operations cover the provision of Investment, Protection and Pension products. Distribution is conducted primarily through a company employed sales team located throughout the UK and segmented into several customer-facing channels, with a growing contribution from the direct marketing operation. The business is in the midst of major change. The new watchwords are profit, cost control and value-add.

The client was concerned that the overheads were too high (when compared to the competition) and would limit their ability to compete.

Consulting Assignment

The client asked us to review the cost base and recommend improvements.

Key Project Activities

The key project activities consisted of an analysis & design, recommendations and implementation.

Analysis and Design
We undertook a detailed analysis of the support activities to understand the scope of potential change. The analysis covered:-

  • Objectives, activities, hi level processes, structure, culture and staff attitudes
  • Stakeholder and internal customer views on service levels
  • Hi level benchmarking
  • Cost to serve (activity based costing)
  • Zero based budgeting

Recommendations
The areas for improvement consisted of:-

  1. Services which had previously been outsourced which no longer provided good value for money should be insourced and downsized.
  2. Services which were non-core and could easily be outsourced
  3. Internal services which had grown out of proportion to their value-add which needed to be re-evaluated and trimmed
  4. Re-engineering and simplifying workflows
  5. Organising activities for the benefit of the internal customer

Implementation
We designed a change programme to implement the above which would include the staff in the process and thereby gain by-in. The programme comprised three change teams from the business:-

  1. Insource Team. This team looked at the current activities and service levels from the outsourcer. Eliminated non value-add activities Mapped the remaining operational processes. Re-designed the process. Profiled the requisite skills. Planned the insourcing of delivery and transference to an existing team.
  2. Outsource Team. This team looked at the current activities and service levels. Eliminated non value-add activities. Mapped the remaining processes and improved same. Prepared a business case and ITT detailing the services to be outsourced. Prepared an implementation plan.
  3. Process & re-Organisation Team. The team reviewed the current activities and service levels. Mapped the key processes. Costed the processes. Re-designed the processes, eliminating those which overlapped or where non value-add activities. Profiled the requisite skill sets to perform the processes. Re-designed the departmental teams around the processes based on like skills. Prepared an implementation plan.

Client Benefits

The result

change-management

...

Transforming the business for customer value

Background

Our client is a national energy company. They supply gas and electricity to commercial and consumer markets. They benefit from a strong well known brand and large customer base but had failed to really capture the inherent value of the business and its position in the marketplace.

The business had been the subject of an extensive strategy review by an International strategy house. The outcome involved:
• Greater customer focus
• Product extension – selling new services/products to the current customer base
• Operational efficiency – new systems and processes to simplify the operations and make them more cost effective
• Culture change – move away from product push to customer pull

Consulting Assignment

The client asked us to help them with the customer focus and culture change aspects of the strategic renewal and PWC handled the operations and IT issues.

Key Project Activities

We conducted a review including competitor review, customer survey, executive and staff structured interviews.

As the new CEO said “our customers have always been loyal to our business but the market is changing, its becoming far more competitive and we need to find better ways to serve them.”

We reviewed the results of the business review with the executive team. We then facilitated a number of workshops with the executive team to jointly develop the new customer strategy and the cultural changes required. The key elements were:

  • Strategy:
    • Revised mission, vision and values to focus on the customer
    • Strategy and plan to support the mission
  • Structure:
    • Re-organised around the customer
    • De-layering
    • Team based management process and incentive scheme
  • Culture:
    • Celebrating great customer service interactions & solutions
    • Empowerment and mentoring

And a change programme was developed and implemented to deliver the above. The change programme consisted of the following teams and brief:

  • Customer focus – how to ensure we add value to everything we do on the customer journey?
  • Structure – how to organise ourselves to support the business focus and our customers?
  • Culture – how to eliminate blame, breakdown the structural barriers and create an empowered/mentored workforce?

Client Benefits

The key client benefits were:

change-management

...

Transformation

Background

Our client is a support division for a nuclear energy company. The business supplies a range of support activities to the parent and other members of the group. The group had recently introduced competitive bidding for support activities which could be supplied from third party providers.

Unfortunately, the support business had started to loose out to third party bidders for corporate work. This was becoming an increasing trend and the management was concerned that their business may disappear unless something was done.

Consulting Assignment

The client asked us to review their business to see why they were loosing work to outside providers.

Key Project Activities

We conducted an in depth business review including internal customer survey, operational process review, executive and staff structured interviews.

As the new CEO said “we thought the group would always use our services and I guess we have taken them for granted…”

Having work-shopped the results of the business review with the executive team, the following were agreed:-

  • Strategy:
    • Revised mission, vision and values to focus on the customer
    • Strategy and plan to support the mission
  • Customers:
    • To actively seek circa 20% of income from sales to other energy companies to enable benchmarking and an external customer approach
  • Operations:
    • Process simplification to be based on customer needs (as opposed to internal legacy process/systems)
    • Outsource non-core activities to save costs
    • Invest in systems to improve efficiency and effectiveness
  • Structure:
    • Re-organised on customer priorities (eliminating the legacy functional structure) with a focus on customer facing project managers and pools of expert resource
    • Introduction of customer account management role
    • Delayering and elimination of non-value add activities (handled via early retirement and redundancies)
    • Team based management process and incentive scheme
  • Culture:
    • Celebrating great customer service interactions & solutions

And a change programme was developed and implemented to deliver the above. The change programme consisted of the following teams and brief:

  • Customer focus – how to serve the customer better?
  • Operational effectiveness/efficiency – how to do more with less?
  • Structure/Culture – how to organise around the customer and create a customer culture?

Client Benefits

change-management

...

Retail Transformation

Background

Our client is a market leader in the UK retailing industry. In the past 8 years, the increase in competitors and change in production and manufacturing (from local to overseas), had resulted in a decline of market share. Internally, organisational growth had produced a large, hierarchical structure with little cross-fascia communication, minimal use of economies of scale for central functions or negotiation, poor customer focus and disjointed buying, merchandising and supplier processes.
The client felt action was needed to revitalise the dominance of existing fascias in the market, provide clarity of product and ensure it continued to return high profits to the owner – a major retail holding corporation in the UK, while developing new concepts.

Consulting Assignment

The client asked us to focus on one of the most profitable fascias, young fashion, but one facing increasingly stronger competition. In 11months the project was to:
“Create and implement a customer-facing retail and supply chain model for the fascia, delivering a process capable of roll-out across the remaining fascias within the company and assisting the achievement of £100m profit within 5 years.”

Key Project Activities

The Analysis revealed significant opportunities for strategic market alignment and to:

  • Develop a team approach throughout the fascia, increasing levels of functional co-operation and trust to solve problems and achieve higher performance.
  • Create a sustainable customer focused business with a drive for continuous development and improvement.
  • Make major improvements to customer and store profiling, range focus, product scheduling and supplier management.

Case Study no 8 - Retail transformation

change-management

Client Benefits

Results of the change programme are summarised below, with first full-year benefits attributed to be between £8 – £15m profit.

change-management

...

Creating a customer pull mentality

Background

Our client is a market leader in the UK retailing industry. In the past 8 years, the increase in competitors and change in production and manufacturing, had resulted in a decline of market share. Internally, organisational growth had produced a large, hierarchical structure with little cross-fascia communication and poor customer focus.
The client felt they had lost sight of the customer. They had evolved into a product push business when what was needed was a customer pull culture. If they could get closer to their customer, they could improve their competitive capability.

Consulting Assignment

The client asked us to focus on one of the most profitable fascias, young fashion, but one facing increasingly stronger competition. The project was to: “Create a customer-pull culture.”

Key Project Activities

We delivered the assignment in three phases:
Phase One – Analysis
Client interviews, a customer survey/focus groups, staff survey/focus groups revealed:

  • The fascia lacked focus. Some 50% of footfall was undertaken by people who used to shop here but couldn’t find anything suitable. Conversion was only 7%.
  • Management and the key teams, namely merchandising and retail, engaged in internal competitive behavior often at the expense of the customer and overall business.

Phase Two – Design
We established two change teams to address the issues raised as follows:

  1. Operations – supply chain/customer journey. With a brief to develop a seamless journey between customer demand and product supply.
  2. Organisation – structure, management and culture. With a brief to look at how the organisation structure, management processes and culture would support the customer pull concept and create a truly customer centric business.

Phase Three – Implementation
The change teams presented their findings to the board and the executive and helped in implementing the resultant change agenda. The methodological approach was subsequently rolled out to the other fascia’s.

Client Benefits

Client benefits include:

  • Sales up 15%
  • Customer satisfaction up 22%
  • Staff satisfaction up 24%
  • Stock outs reduced by 17%
...

Customer First Strategy

Background

Our client is a National professional body. Their services cover training, professional qualifications, insights, advice and a national voice for their members. They are one of three professional bodies which are of similar size, ranking and provide very similar services, in what might be considered a crowded marketplace.

Competition between the three bodies had to a large degree been based on market perception of the respective professional qualification and the success of their members. However, the search for competitive advantage was ever present and the client was keen to ensure they could maintain an edge on the others.

Consulting Assignment

The client asked us to help them to develop their own version of a customer centric strategy and implementation plan.

Key Project Activities

We conducted a series of interviews with the various stakeholder groups. From the results we developed a straw model customer centric strategy and a gap analysis of where the client was currently operating.

We then work-shopped the issues with the executive team and developed a joint approach on:

  • The future customer centric strategy
  • The operational changes that were necessary to support the strategy
  • The structural changes needed
  • The management process and KPI’s to support the customer strategy

The final step was to develop a change programme for the executive to follow.

Client Benefits

The result was a client owned customer centric strategy and implementation plan.

The story continues as the client continues on the journey.

...

Creating a Customer First Focus

Background

Our client is a market leader in the UK leisure and entertainment industry. They have 80 entertainment sites and 5,000 people. The business is profitable with a customer base of some 13 million and sells more tickets per year than the closest competitors. Their strategy has been one of cost leadership in a very competitive marketplace. However, despite their obvious popularity only 3 out of 10 customers were aware of their brand. Their nearest competitors on the other hand enjoyed customer unprompted awareness scores, respectively of 7 out of 10 and 8 out of 10. As a consequence their competitors were able to charge higher prices and achieved higher margins.
The client was well aware of the issues and was in the process of developing a number of strategic initiatives to improve their competitive capability, ranging from new IT systems, e-commerce & e-marketing to new formats & enhanced technology at sites. They recognized that they needed a coherent customer strategy to make sense of these initiatives and that they required some external assistance to make sure it all fitted together and could be delivered.

Consulting Assignment

The client asked us to review their strategy, proposed initiatives and their ability to manage a change programme encompassing many project areas.
We produced a programme plan encapsulating their initiatives into a single theme, namely to put the customer first. The touchstone for each initiative was “Does it add value to the customer offering and to the bottom line?” The strategic premise underpinning the approach was that the business should move away from a cost leadership model to a differentiated service offering. If customers experienced better service (13m customers passed their doors every year) and a better overall experience they would remember the brand and recommend it to their friends. Brand awareness would improve and the business would be able to compete on service rather than price.
The client asked us to help them implement the programme plan – which we called the Customer First Programme.

Key Project Activities

The programme comprised of the following activities:-

  • Customer research – to understand customers current views of the customer journey and how they would like it to improve
  • Staff research – to understand current values/behaviors and how these would need to change to meet customer needs.
  • Systems strategy, selection and project managing the implementation – the company had legacy systems which needed to be replaced in order to deliver an efficient service and facilitate the on-line marketing strategy
  • E-commerce/e-marketing strategy, planning and project managing the implementation – the e-commerce platform required re-development to enable the capture of customer data for targeted marketing. The e-marketing strategy required delineation to target market to 4 customer groups.
  • Branding – the brand strategy and positioning needed development and alignment with the business objectives.
  • Customer service proposition – having understood customer needs the customer service proposition needed to be clearly defined and tested (via focus groups) to match those needs
  • Entertainment site design – although this had evolved in a somewhat erratic fashion, the time was apposite to clearly define the physical site of the future, incorporating all the ideas and needs of customers.
  • Identity and Communications – the brand identity required clear articulation to match the brand positioning. This then required communication to staff and customers.
  • Staff alignment/engagement – the above represented a significant change in direction for the business and the staff were the ones who would bring it about.

The following schematic explains the programme logic:-

change-management

In order to deliver the programme we created a project structure based on the principles of facilitated change as follows:-

  1. On-Line Customer Experience – objective to improve the on-line customer experience and enable customer dialogue:-
    1. IT – project management of systems selection and implementation
    2. E-commerce – project management of web design and build
    3. E-marketing – facilitation of marketing change team
  2. Physical Customer Experience – objective to understand customer needs and improve the physical customer experience
    1. Customer strategy team – facilitation of the senior multi-disciplinary team to develop the customer strategy, plans and communications.
    2. Staff alignment/engagement team – facilitation of the multidisciplinary team to determine how the business would need to change and how to implement.
    3. Customer service team – facilitation of the multidisciplinary team to determine the desired customer service offering and how to implement.
    4. Physical site team – facilitation of the multidisciplinary team to determine the entertainment site of the future

The programme has been a great success. The foundations of change have been firmly embedded in the business and the change agenda continues. The organisational values are now regarded as a key component/enabler in the delivery of the brand promise. Customers have been placed at the forefront of the strategic intent and operational delivery.

Client Benefits

The customer first change programme has the following benefits:

change-management

Benefits Tracking

The benefits achieved so far (24mths since commencing the programme):-

change-management

...

Delivering culture change

Background

Our client is a market leader in their service-based industry, with 80 physical sites and 5,000 people employed. The business is profitable, with a customer base of 13 million and three principle competitors.
Their strategy had been to offer their customers best value for money in a very competitive marketplace and to focus on operational excellence. Whilst this formula had driven success for several years, it was becoming increasingly apparent that the future required a different approach.
The client was beginning to recognise that the experience they were giving their customers was not as good as that provided by some of their competitors. They realised that they needed a more customer-centered approach and that this would require a change in approach and attitudes. In the words of one of the directors “ our customers are like guests in our home, their experience is a direct result of our culture…it will never be better than the way we treat each other.”

Consulting Assignment

The client asked us to help them change their customer experience and re-focus their culture on the creation of an excellent customer experience.

Key Project Activities

The programme comprised of the following activities:-

Analysis

The analysis phase looked at the competition, customer requirements, current service proposition and organisational culture.

The key findings were that customers felt processed, the service interaction lacked any personal engagement and as a consequence only three out of ten customers remembered the brand. Interestingly, staff felt constrained and wanted to improve the customer experience/service. The primary cultural barriers were around blame, an emphasis on control and a reward/recognition system focused on operational efficiency.

Design

We designed a change programme focused on releasing the organisational energy to deliver an excellent customer experience. The programme was based on the principles of facilitated change as follows:-

  1. Customer strategy team – facilitation of the senior team to develop the customer strategy, plans and communications.
  2. Customer service team – facilitation of the multidisciplinary team to determine the desired customer service offering and how to implement.
  3. Employee brand/culture team – facilitation of the multidisciplinary team to determine how the business would need to change and how to implement.

Implementation

Implementation has been undertaken via a mix of group initiatives and line management change activities. The key elements are:

  • The executive team has a clear understanding of the customer strategy, the operational processes and cultural norms, which enable delivery. Management regularly review progress of the changes. The new metrics focus on the Net Promoter Score (NPS) and the Employee Promoter Score (EPS).
  • Operations. The focus has moved from operational efficiency to an effective customer experience. Process, customer interaction and cultural norms are continually measured and managed. Great customer service stories are celebrated.
  • Employee brand. The employee brand and distinctive competencies of the business are incorporated into the recruitment, training, learning, reward and recognition processes across the group. Cultural reinforcement is around banishing blame, supporting coaching and promoting empowerment.

Client Benefits

The programme has been a great success. The foundations of change have been firmly embedded in the business and the change agenda continues. The organisational values are now regarded as a key component/enabler in the delivery of the brand promise. Customers have been placed at the forefront of the strategic intent and operational delivery.

And the metrics demonstrate the success so far:

  • Brand recognition up 40%
  • Net Promoter Score up 40%
  • Employee Promoter Score up 35%
  • Turnover up 23%
...

Building a Customer facing HR Department

Background

Our client is a medium sized player in the Financial Services Industry. Their operations cover the provision of Investment, Protection and Pension products. Like many financial service providers they are developing a broader product/service offering and have recently included Banking services in their portfolio. Distribution is conducted primarily through a Company Employed Sales team located throughout the UK and segmented into several customer facing channels, with a growing contribution from the Direct Marketing operation. The Business is in the midst of major change, the sleepy and comfortable organisation is changing into a dynamic athlete. Preparation for de-mutualisation has resulted in changing half the management team including the CEO, slimming the operations and focusing the Business on the customer. The new watchwords are profit, cost control and value add. The client was concerned that:

  • The Head Office Personnel function, with its historical focus on pay and benefits, was finding it difficult to keep pace with the culture change requirements. As a result the Young Turks in management were developing their own human resource activities.
  • The field Sales Recruitment and Training function was proving to be a drain on resources and wasn’t delivering a sufficient number of trained financial advisers to keep pace with the Sales team turnover.

Consulting Assignment

The client asked us to combine and restructure the Personnel and Sales Training/Recruitment departments to support the organisational objectives, including a review of the Personnel processes and strategy

Key Project Activities

The project consisted of an HR Audit to surface the issues and the internal customer requirements. Comparison of the existing HR programmes and practices with best practice models. The joint design of HR strategies structure and processes. Followed by the implementation of the proposals utilising client change teams.

The implementation focused on:

Strategic
Having established the core Business Drivers, HR strategies were developed to support key business objectives and integrate existing initiatives.

Structure
The structure was designed to support the HR strategy, with the focus on creating a value chain of integrated activity. Eliminating hand-offs, ensuring synergy of effort. Roles, responsibilities and expectations were clarified:

change-management

Management Processes
Introduction of performance management principles. Creation of a balanced set of measures based on the key business drivers to create goal congruency. Operationalisation of the measures in a systematic plan-do-review process.

Operations
HR processes were designed by the change teams to deliver the strategy. The result was the elimination of duplicated activities and functional silos.

People
The new structure and job responsibilities represented a dramatic change from the past. We therefore developed new job descriptions and conducted a series of competency based interviews to select the most appropriate people for the new roles. Personal development plans were introduced to support this activity.

Client Benefits

The key benefits were:-

change-management

...

World Class Service Strategy

Background

Our client is a major operator in the Cable TV/Telephony Industry. Their operations include the design and construction of the network, the operation of Cable TV/Telephony services and the recent development of a programming capability. They provide a full range of telephony services to commercial subscribers and cable tv/telephony services to residential customers. The business has recently been created from the merger of several regional players into a national organisation with a significant network which is strategically placed to provide alternative routes for UK traffic.

The client was concerned that having reorganised the business and embarked upon the introduction of a new customer management system – including the re-engineering of customer facing processes – customer service was still perceived to be poor. Moreover they realised that the delivery of excellent customer service can be a major differentiator in terms of competitive capability, which would allow them to add value to the core product offering and effectively compete with BT and BSkyB.

Consulting Assignment

The client asked us to ask their customers what they thought about the current levels of service, to assess the organisational attitude to the delivery of customer service and to help them improve.

Key Project Activities

An organisational survey was conducted in order to understand the internal view of service levels and the blockages to attaining the desired corporate goal of “World Class Service Provider.”

A consumer survey was undertaken to determine the relative importance of the various elements of the product/service mix and the consumers’ views of existing service levels.
Having established the internal obstacles to the delivery of excellent service, and consumers perception of existing service levels, we designed a programme to deliver “World Class Service.” The programme included:

  • a communication programme to feedback the results of the surveys and the way forward
  • top team workshops where we designed customer facing business processes
  • coaching the management to support customer focused practices and processes
  • team building with the operating divisions’ executive teams

Integrating the survey results into a programme of improvement ensured that the project was seen as part of the day to day management of the company, whilst providing tangible, measurable and focused results.

Client Benefits

The key benefits included:

change-management

...

Strategy and Alignment

Background

Our client is a major service provider. Their operations include network construction, and the provision of entertainment and communication services to both commercial and residential consumers. Distribution is primarily conducted through direct and telephone sales channels.

The business has been the subject of a recent merger and the client was concerned that:

  • The strategy for growth was fragmented and unsupported by business plans.
  • The senior and middle management team neither believed in the strategy nor identified ways in which it could be implemented.
  • The current structure was impeding growth.

Consulting Assignment

The client asked us to integrate the business objectives into a coherent strategy for growth which was supported by workable business plans, to gain senior management buy in and design an organisation structure which would enable implementation of the business objectives.

Key Project Activities

Strategy Delineation
Working with the top team in a series of one to one and group workshop sessions we integrated the business objectives into a cohesive strategy, combining the requirements to provide a segmented approach to the market and differentiate the product offering through customer service with the need to introduce an effective and responsive strategic management process.

Operationalising the Strategy
Having developed the Corporate Strategy we set about explaining it to the business by forming six multi-disciplinary strategy implementation groups. Each group, comprised of senior managers, were given the task of formulating detailed operational plans to deliver specific aspects of the strategy. They worked together in facilitated workshops over a period of three months and produced detailed plans for implementation.

Structure
The process of operationalising the strategy highlighted the key business processes which would deliver success. We then set about designing a structure which would support the business processes and reflect value add in the chain of service delivery.

Client Benefits

The key benefits were:-

change-management

...

Transforming a Government NDPB

Background

Our client – a National College – was established in 2001 to improve leadership in schools. The college was staffed by 330 employees – mainly ex head teachers and training professionals – and employed numerous external training individuals/agencies. The campus activities extended over three sites with a budget of £120m.

Our client was concerned that the organisation had grown in size and remit beyond its original intent.

Consulting Assignment

Our client asked us to make the organisation more efficient and to reduce costs.

Key Project Activities

Analysis and Design

We undertook a detailed analysis of the activities to understand the scope of potential change. The analysis covered:-

  • Objectives, activities, hi level processes, structure, culture
  • Staff attitudes
  • Stakeholder and customer views on remit and service levels
  • Cost to serve

The areas for improvement consisted of:-

  1. Services which would more effectively be outsourced i.e. preparation of training materials
  2. Services which had grown out of proportion to their value-add which needed to be re-evaluated and trimmed

Implementation

We designed a change programme to implement the above which would include the management in the process and thereby gain by-in. The programme comprised two change teams from the business:-

  1. Outsource Team. This team looked at the current activities and service levels. Eliminated non value-add activities. Mapped the remaining processes and improved same. Prepared a business case and ITT detailing the services to be outsourced. Prepared an implementation plan.
  2. Re-Organisation Team. The team reviewed the current activities and service levels. Mapped the key hi-level processes. Costed the processes. Re-designed the processes, eliminating those which overlapped or where non value-add activities. Profiled the requisite skill sets to perform the processes. Re-designed the departmental teams around the processes based on like skills. Prepared an implementation plan.

Client Benefits

The benefits included:-

  • Re-organised and focused executive team
  • Executive team reduced from 33 to 8
  • Staffing headcount reduction of 25%
  • Budget reduced by 25%
...

Building a Customer Focused Business

Background

Our client is a medium sized operator in the Cable TV/Telephony Industry. Their operations are vertically integrated including the bidding for green field franchises, design and construction of the network and operation of Cable TV/Telephony services. They provide a full range of telephony services to commercial subscribers and cable tv/telephony services to residential customers. Recently they have experimented with programming and the provision of consultancy services to European markets which are in the process of de-regulation. The business has grown rapidly from a single site to multi-site operation with incumbent issues around management control.

The client was concerned that the business was significantly behind expected performance levels. Penetration levels were low, customer complaints high, expenses were significantly above budget and cash flow was significantly adrift from that forecast.

Consulting Assignment

The client asked us to review the business operations in terms of their strategy, structure and management processes in order to put them back on plan. The brief was to: “Build a customer facing business supported by efficient operations”

Key Project Activities

The analysis revealed significant opportunities to improve performance as evidenced by the residential “Leaky Pipe”:

change-management

The resulting project focused on:
Strategic

Segmenting the customer base, re-designing the service offering to cater for the specific needs of the different customer groups.

Structure

Re-designing the organisational structure to support the customer facing strategy. Creation of work teams focused on the different customer segments. Clarity of roles, responsibilities and expectations.

Management Processes

Introduction of performance management principles utilising the Balanced Scorecard methodology. Creation of a balanced set of measures based on the key business drivers to create goal congruency between Engineering, Marketing, Customer Services and Finance. Operationalisation of the measures in a systematic plan-do-review process.

Operations

Co-ordinating the build activities with the marketing activities to reduce negative cash flow.

People

Introduction of personal development plans. Team based training on Customer First, Team Roles and Performance Management principles.

Client Benefits

The key benefits included:

change-management

...

Realising the benefits of Bancassurance

Background

Our client is a major Financial Services organisation. Their UK operations include all aspects of Personal and Corporate Banking as well as the provision of general lines of Insurance and Life Assurance. Distribution is via an extensive retail branch network and an established direct channel of branded services. The Life business was established in the late 80’s with a view to pursuing a Bancassurance strategy, whereby non-banking financial service products including Mortgage, Life Protection and Pension products are sold to the warm and extensive client base. However, penetration levels have remained low despite the adoption of various business models over the years.

Consulting Assignment

Our client asked us to look at the business and help them with their objective of equipping career bankers with the ability to sell a full range of financial service products.

Key Project Activities

Analysis

We conducted a detailed analysis of the Banking and Life businesses including a review of strategic aims, structures, cultures, managerial processes, sales and marketing processes and staff competencies.

Feedback and Recommendations

Our analysis revealed significant opportunities in the following areas:-

  • Alignment of goals, objectives and strategies
  • Structural integration and simplification of reporting lines
  • Cultural awareness and understanding
  • Best practise managerial processes
  • Best practise marketing/sales processes
  • Employee motivation
  • Staff education in terms of Financial Service products

Our recommendations included a series of detailed operational improvement strategies to address these opportunities.

Realising the Benefits of Bancassurance

Our client decided to operationalise the changes by communicating the findings in a learning forum and building the Bancassurance causal relationships, which had been evidenced in the analysis, into the ongoing business management process. The result was:-

  • A case study reflecting the issues and learning points
  • Development of a model of how the Bancassurance business process actually operated, utilising the “I-Think” business modelling software package. The model was designed to reflect the cause and effect relationships between the business variables, namely Strategy/Structure/Culture/Process/People, in a Sales Funnel environment. This Bancassurance model is interactive, participants can evaluate “What If” scenarios by varying the business mix and thereby formulate their plans for improvement.

Both of the above were used initially by the business management team at their offsite sessions on strategy formulation and then more extensively in the business as part of an integrated organisational learning approach.

...

Retail Turnaround

Background

The client is a national retailer of home furnishings. The business has grown rapidly from one branch to 42 branches in six years. The rate of organic growth has created a number of problems which the current management team have struggled with:-

  • The business is overtrading with insufficient capital.
  • The directors have been highly successful in growing the business, but lack the experience and knowledge to implement good management practices which would give stakeholders and potential investors the confidence to grow the business further.
  • The bank has expressed a lack of confidence in the management team and requires significant personal guarantees from the directors in order to continue with the current banking arrangements.

Consulting Assignment
The companies bankers along with the chairman asked us to work with the current directors to:-

  • Establish the profitability of the business
  • Improve the efficacy of the business management
  • Re-finance the business

Key Project Activities

Working closely with the board and specifically the finance director we:-

  • Reviewed the financial statements and established that the accounts had been significantly miss-stated for the last five years, resulting in a misconception over profitability. These were then re-stated.
  • Prepared a detailed profit forecast for the next two years and established the viability of the business.
  • Implemented strict cash management procedures as the business was cash constrained.
  • Reviewed the business model and established areas for significant improvement, namely:-
    • Use of loss leader products during the four key sale periods throughout the year.
    • Use of overlapping media advertising.
    • Product lead times
  • Developed management reporting processes and established a robust Board review of progress.
  • Prepaired a business plan encapsulating the proposed benefits.
  • Negotiated bank finance
  • Organised a part equity offer from a VC

Client Benefits

The client benefits included:-

change-management

...

Best Practice Governance

Background

Our client is a leading and very successful UK retailer. Operations include a retail network throughout the UK supported by regional distribution centers and a head office in the south east. The business has grown organically from a startup position to market leader in its sector.
The rapid expansion has created pressure on management’s time and the business finances. The company’s Bankers felt exposed and consequently imposed a dramatic reduction in the financing facilities.

Consulting Assignment

We were asked to review and improve the business and financial governance procedures with a view to securing improved banking terms.

Key Project Activities

Business Governance

Defined the business strategy, business plan and budgets for the board and senior managers review.
Implemented a structured business management process through regular operational management meetings and monthly board meetings
Delineated the organisation structure and created clear roles/responsibilities for the board down to the middle managers.

Financial Governance

Discovered material errors in the audited accounts as result of:- a) revenue recognition,
b) capitalisation policy, c) product costing and, d) stock management.
Recruited a new FD and key finance people. Implemented a new accounting system.
Implemented a new financial reporting & review process.
Developed financial strategy, plans and budgets

Business Management

Implemented supply chain system and associated reporting.
Facilitated the board in the review of product pricing and overhead management

Finance

Managed the re-financing of the business

Client Benefits

The main client benefits were:

change-management

...

Strategy and Change

Background

Our client is a medium sized player in the Financial Services Industry. Their operations cover the provision of Investment, Protection and Pension products. Distribution is conducted primarily through two Company employed sales teams located throughout the UK and segmented into several customer-facing channels, with a growing contribution from the direct marketing operation.

The company was facing increased competition and the newly appointed CEO wondered what made them different from the opposition.

Consulting Assignment

The CEO asked us to help them become more customer focused. He felt that this was a potential source of competitive advantage.

Key Project Activities

We undertook a business analysis, reviewing the industry, competitors, segmenting the players and their customer base. A clear opportunity existed for this company to excel in customer centricity. They had a sizable customer base, which they had failed to properly explore in terms of how to create added value.

We discussed the opportunities with the executive team. Conducted several workshops on customer focus and the changes required. The CEO decided he would like to share the findings with the business and set the operational management the task of developing the future for the business.

Accordingly, we established the following change teams with the questions set by the CEO:

  • Investment – how can we establish a track record in first quartile investment results?
  • Sales/Marketing – how can we service our existing customers better?
  • Operations – how can we leverage our operations to create better value for our customers?
  • Culture/Structure – how can we become customer centric in everything we do?

The senior executives supported by middle management rose to the occasion and developed outstanding approaches/action plans for change. The organisational energy released by the process took everyone by surprise. In the words of the CEO…” we seem to have a released a sleeping giant…its now up to the executive team to make it come true.”

Client Benefits

The key benefits were:-

change-management

...

Teams and the Balanced Scorecard

Background

Our client is a medium sized service provider. Their operations cover a diversified range of products. A mixed channel distribution strategy has been adopted. The business is structured around the primary product offerings. The client was concerned that:

  • The numerous organisational strategic objectives lacked an integrative framework.
  • Managers, Business Units and Projects competed for directors time and business resource without a clear mechanism for prioritisation.
  • Departmental Initiatives designed to deliver departmental objectives often conflicted across the business.
  • Measuring progress against plan was achieved via a mix of financial and operational performance indicators which often gave conflicting messages and didn’t give the full story.
  • Employee performance and subsequent development, although based on organisational competencies, failed to link individual accomplishment to business success.

Consulting Assignment

The client asked us to review the business control processes and help them to produce an integrative system utilising the principles of the Balanced Scorecard methodology.

Key Project Activities

In phase one of the eighteen month programme we conducted the following:

Business Process Review
Working with managers throughout the organisation we reviewed the existing business strategy setting, operational planning and performance measurement systems. These were critiqued against the Balanced Scorecard (BSC) concepts and the gaps were identified.

Business Objective Integration and the Corporate Scorecard
Working with the top team in a series of one to one and group workshop sessions we prioritised and integrated the organisational objectives around the BSC framework of Customer, Operational, People and Financial goals. We then developed a corporate scorecard for the top team.

In phase two of the programme we:

Designing Business Scorecards
Working with the senior and middle management groups we designed the operational scorecards across the business linking corporate objectives to the grass root drivers of performance.

Designing Individual Scorecards
Working at various levels within the organisation we designed individual scorecards linking personal performance and development to the business objectives.

In phase three of the programme we:

Data Capture
Working with the management group we designed and captured the BSC information.

Implementation
Working with the whole business we implemented the BSC management process.

change-management

...

Transforming a Government NDPB

Background

Our client – a National College – was established in 2001 to improve leadership in schools. The college was staffed by 330 employees – mainly ex head teachers and training professionals – and employed numerous external training individuals/agencies. The campus activities extended over three sites with a budget of £120m.

Our client was concerned that the organisation had grown in size and remit beyond its original intent.

Consulting Assignment

Our client asked us to make the organisation more efficient and to reduce costs.

Key Project Activities

Analysis and Design

We undertook a detailed analysis of the activities to understand the scope of potential change. The analysis covered:-

  • Objectives, activities, hi level processes, structure, culture
  • Staff attitudes
  • Stakeholder and customer views on remit and service levels
  • Cost to serve

The areas for improvement consisted of:-

  1. Services which would more effectively be outsourced i.e. preparation of training materials
  2. Services which had grown out of proportion to their value-add which needed to be re-evaluated and trimmed

Implementation

We designed a change programme to implement the above which would include the management in the process and thereby gain by-in. The programme comprised two change teams from the business:-

  1. Outsource Team. This team looked at the current activities and service levels. Eliminated non value-add activities. Mapped the remaining processes and improved same. Prepared a business case and ITT detailing the services to be outsourced. Prepared an implementation plan.
  2. Re-Organisation Team. The team reviewed the current activities and service levels. Mapped the key hi-level processes. Costed the processes. Re-designed the processes, eliminating those which overlapped or where non value-add activities. Profiled the requisite skill sets to perform the processes. Re-designed the departmental teams around the processes based on like skills. Prepared an implementation plan.

Client Benefits

The benefits included:-

  • Re-organised and focused executive team
  • Executive team reduced from 33 to 8
  • Staffing headcount reduction of 25%
  • Budget reduced by 25%
...

Managing Change in Financial Services

Background

Our client is a National Life & Pensions company. They operate one of the largest pension funds in the UK and sell their products via various channels to market – namely IFA’s, tied agents (Banks and BS) and JV’s. The business is profitable with an enviable track record and strong branding.

However, increased competition and a squeeze on costs meant the business had to do more with less.

Consulting Assignment

The CEO decided the Sales/Marketing division needed to save 25% on costs and asked us to help them deliver the savings via their own change programme.

Key Project Activities

The programme comprised of the following activities:-

Analysis

The analysis covered stakeholder interviews, customer research, staff research, process mapping and financial analysis. The key insights were best summarised by a senior executive’s comment “…we seem to be all things to all people, we over deliver to the small customers and probably under deliver to our most valued tied agents (Banks), we don’t have a sense of how valuable a customer is nor how much profit they add to our bottom line…”

Design

The results of the analysis provided the focus for the change initiatives. We set up the following change teams – comprising a sponsor, project manager and five senior members of staff from across the business plus a consultant – and tasked them to answer the questions:

  • Customer segmentation – how should we segment the customer base?
  • Customer service – what level of service should be delivered to each segment?
  • Operational effectiveness – how can we improve operational effectiveness?
  • Regional footprint (and homeworking) – how can we reduce the regional footprint?
  • Structure – what structure and skills would support the new sales/marketing division?
Implementation

Implementation was conducted via a mix of line staff and project staff

Client Benefits

The key client benefits:

  • New customer focused strategy
  • Sales/marketing division designed around adding value to highest value customers
  • Savings of 25% identified and delivered
  • Customer satisfaction increased
  • Staff satisfaction significantly increased
  • Share price increase 8.75% on announcement of the changes
...

Managing the Change Agenda

Background

Our client is a major service provider. Their operations cover the provision of a diversified range of products directly to consumers. The Business has recently been created from the merger of several smaller players, which has precipitated a complete organisational restructuring, the appointment of a new Top Team and the refocusing of the strategy.
The client was concerned that, despite the time and energy which had been devoted to the re-organisation and re-alignment of objectives, the business was failing to meet targets, customer complaints were increasing and morale was low.

Consulting Assignment

The client asked us to conduct an organisational survey to unearth the reasons for poor performance. In the words of the CEO…..”people don’t come to work to fail……our job is to help them succeed.”

Key Project Activities

The Analysis…
One to one interviews were conducted with the top team and senior management group in order to uncover the organisational issues.

Focus group sessions were conducted with a stratified sample of middle managers and junior employees in order to gain a working knowledge of how the organisational issues were affecting the day-to-day operations.

The Solution…
A series of workshops were conducted with the Top Team and Senior Management group, whereby we jointly reviewed the organisational blockages, considered alternative solutions and designed an improvement programme.

The Implementation…
We jointly designed a communication programme to explain the new organisational structure, business processes and objectives.

We set up five improvement teams, each with a main board Director and cross functional membership, with the brief to deliver a specific objective and break down the organisational departmental barriers.

Client Benefits

The key benefits included:

change-management

...

Market Research and Entry

Background

Our client operates in the Office Refit/Refurbishment Industry. Their operations cover the specification and project management of large office refurbishment’s. They enjoy an enviable reputation for quality, effective management and timely project completion within budget. All of which has facilitated consistency of returns and a share of this competitive UK market of some 10% plus. However, like all customer focused businesses they continually explore ways in which they can add value to their service offering and get closer to their customers.

Consulting Assignment

They were considering broadening their service offering to include the design and build of the IT Cabling Systems which facilitate Voice, Data and Video communications in buildings, since these systems are usually replaced during refurbishment. Hence, they asked us to conduct a market survey of the IT Infrastructure Industry in order to assess the attractiveness of entering this industry and to survey their existing customers to see if they would buy the new service.

Key Project Activities

We prepared an analysis of the industry including, size, profitability, influences, segmentation analysis, trends and broad company profiles. Having selected a shortlist of companies we then conducted exploratory interviews at director level with these organisations, which enabled us to prepare detailed company profiles including, market focus, strategy, profitability, growth and routes to market, including an evaluation with respect to business attractiveness, strategic fit and recommendations on type of alliance.

Our researchers conducted a survey of the clients customers by segment and we analysed the results. The whole process was conducted in a 6 week time frame.

Case Study no 36 - Market entry

Client Benefits

Our client commended our report as invaluable in terms of facilitating the decision on entering the IT Infrastructure Industry and in terms of the recommended strategy for doing so.

...

Transformation and Cost reduction

Background

Our client is regional nuclear energy company. The business includes two reactor installations supported by a head office and staff of some 2,500.

The new CEO was concerned that the electricity generating costs of the business were amongst the highest in the UK. This meant the company was at a disadvantage when supplying the grid and would also affect any future potential merger opportunities.

Consulting Assignment

The client asked us to see how to reduce the cost base and make them more efficient/effective.

Key Project Activities

We conducted an in depth business review including industry benchmarking, expert interviews, top team appraisals, operational process review, staff survey and focus group workshops on the issues.

The ambition for the business was summarised by the new CEO during an interview…. “if we are going to compete we need to produce 1200 megawatts of electricity with 1800 employees…..and this seems like a step too far from where I am sitting…”

And the main issue was summarised by one of the directors when he said…”here is the organisation chart for the 200 plus managers…….afraid I don’t have an organisation chart for the remaining 1,000 engineers…they are in several unions…and we don’t have much control over them…”

We reviewed the results of the business review with the executive team. We then facilitated a number of workshops with the executive team to jointly develop what eventually turned out to be a revised business model. The key elements were:

  • Strategy:
    • Revised mission, vision and values to focus on the 1812 theme – 1200 megawatts of electricity with 1800 employees
    • Strategy and plan to support the mission
  • Operations:
    • Process simplification to be based on effective/efficient delivery (as opposed to internal legacy process/systems)
    • Outsource non-core activities to save costs
    • Invest in systems to improve efficiency and effectiveness
  • Structure:
    • Re-organised – eliminating the legacy functional structure
    • Delayering
    • Multi- tasking and elimination of restrictive practices (including union negotiated settlements)
    • Elimination of non-value add activities (handled via early retirement and redundancies)
  • Culture:
    • Celebrating effective/efficient delivery of service
    • Reward and recognition based on productivity

And a change programme was developed and implemented to deliver the above. The change programme consisted of the following teams and brief:

  • Operational effectiveness/efficiency – how to do more with less?
  • Structure – how to organise for efficient/effective support to the business?
  • Culture – how to create the winning team?

Client Benefits

The key benefits were:

change-management

...

Cost Reduction

Background

Our client is a market leader in the UK retailing industry. In the past 8 years, the increase in competitors and change in production and manufacturing (from local to overseas), had resulted in a decline of market share. Internally, organisational growth had produced a large, hierarchical structure with little cross-fascia communication, minimal use of economies of scale for central functions or negotiation, poor customer focus and disjointed buying, merchandising and supplier processes.
The client felt action was needed to revitalise the dominance of existing fascias in the market, provide clarity of product and ensure it continued to return high profit to the owner – a major retail holding corporation in the UK, while developing new concepts.

Consulting Assignment

The client asked us to focus on one of the most profitable fascias, young fashion, but one facing increasingly stronger competition. In 11months the project was to:
“Create and implement a customer-facing retail and supply chain model for the fascia, delivering a process capable of roll-out across the remaining fascias within the company and assisting the achievement of £100m profit within 5 years.”

Key Project Activities

The Analysis revealed significant opportunities for strategic market alignment and to:

  • Develop a team approach throughout the fascia, increasing levels of functional co-operation and trust to solve problems and achieve higher performance.
  • Create a sustainable customer focused business with a drive for continuous development and improvement.
  • Make major improvements to customer and store profiling, range focus, product scheduling and supplier management.

Case Study no 8 - Retail transformation

change-management

Client Benefits

Results of the change programme are summarised below, with first full-year benefits attributed to be between £8 – £15m profit.

change-management

...

Segmenting Consumer Markets

Background

Our client is a major service provider. Their operations include network construction, and the provision of entertainment and communication services to both commercial and residential consumers. Distribution is primarily conducted through direct, retail and telephone sales channels.

The client was concerned that sales growth was significantly behind budget, the marketing spend was not delivering the expected levels of penetration and as a consequence the planned network growth was in jeopardy. They realised that a segmented approach to understanding and fulfilling the diverse needs of the potential customer base was appropriate but felt that some help was needed.

Consulting Assignment

The client asked us to help them with their market analysis, marketing strategy and promotional plan.

Key Project Activities

The Analysis…
One to one interviews were conducted with senior Sales and Marketing managers to determine the efficacy of the existing marketing strategies.

Desk research of consumer and marketing information was undertaken to provide hard data on current and potential customers.

The Solution…
A series of workshops were conducted with senior Sales and Marketing Managers, where we jointly:-

  • Reviewed customer needs and the existing value propositions.
  • Segmented consumer markets, defined customer requirements and delineated the customer value proposition – which were then tested through a market research programme.
  • Positioned the brand, the price, the promotion and channel for effectively taking the product to market.
  • Designed test marketing and final marketing programmes.
  • Designed marketing information feedback and review processes.

Result

A marketing strategy focused on the needs of the differing customer groups:

change-management

...

IT Cost Reduction in Financial Services

Background

Our client – 11,000 employees, T/O £1bn – is an International Insurance broker. Their operations cover commercial brokering in Europe, Asia and USA. Insurance services cover a broad range of corporate assets, including buildings, airlines and shipping plus corporate liability for employees, products and customer services. The business is organised around service lines to its customers with core support activities being centralised in the UK and USA.
The industry has been the subject of consolidation, with competitive pressures on margin and a search for competitive advantage.
Our client was concerned with the size of the central support costs and more specifically about the escalating cost of IT and the inability to control legacy system costs.

Consulting Assignment

Our client asked us to help them to reduce the cost of IT, gain control of the IT division and to help them improve their service.

Key Project Activities

Managerial Control/Operational Control

Implemented performance management principles. Linked departmental and individual objectives to group objectives. Established regular plan do review cycle at various operating levels. Introduced performance monitoring and measurement. Created all important linkages between operational decisions/control and financial outcomes/control

Financial Control

Cost Analysis – Detailed activity based cost analysis completed, linking cost to service delivered.
Financial Awareness – Established financial accountability at operating management level
Zero Based Budget – Established principles of ZBB and facilitated the preparation of the 2001/2002 on the new basis
Billing System – Introduced new intra company charging system for IT services clearly delineating cost of service
Benchmarking – Introduced Cost of service benchmarking with external alternative IT providers

Value for Money

Eliminated non value-add activities.
Reengineered operational processes to improve efficiency and reduce cost
Compared internal and external costs of service. Prepared detailed plans for insourcing 20% of the key service activities (associated savings = 25% of budgeted cost)

Organisational Control

Re-organised the division around the newly established operational processes

Client Benefits The main client benefits were:

change-management

...

Performance Improvement in the Back Office

Background

Our client is an International Insurance broker. Insurance services cover a broad range of corporate assets, including buildings, airlines and shipping plus corporate liability for employees, products and customer services. The business is organised around service lines to its customers with core support activities being centralised in the UK.

The industry has been the subject of consolidation, with competitive pressures on margin and a search for competitive advantage.

Our client was concerned with the size of the central support costs including IT, Admin and Finance.

Consulting Assignment

Our client asked us to help them to reduce the cost of the central support services by 25%.

Key Project Activities

The key project activities consisted of an analysis & design, recommendations and implementation.

Analysis and Design

We undertook a detailed analysis of the support activities to understand the scope of potential change. The analysis covered:-

  • Objectives, activities, hi level processes, structure, culture
  • Staff attitudes
  • Stakeholder and internal customer views on service levels
  • Hi level benchmarking
  • Cost to serve
Recommendations

The areas for improvement consisted of:-

  1. Services which had previously been outsourced which no longer provided good value for money should be insourced and downsized.
  2. Services which were non-core and could easily be outsourced to free up space i.e. internal customer help-line
  3. Internal services which had grown out of proportion to their value-add which needed to be re-evaluated and trimmed
Implementation

We designed a change programme to implement the above which would include the staff in the process and thereby gain by-in. The programme comprised three change teams from the business:-

  1. Insource Team. This team looked at the current activities and service levels from the outsourcer. Eliminated non value-add activities Mapped the remaining operational processes. Re-designed the process. Profiled the requisite skills. Planned the insourcing of delivery and transference to an existing team.
  2. Outsource Team. This team looked at the current activities and service levels. Eliminated non value-add activities. Mapped the remaining processes and improved same. Prepared a business case and ITT detailing the services to be outsourced. Prepared an implementation plan.
  3. Re-Organisation Team. The team reviewed the current activities and service levels. Mapped the key processes. Costed the processes. Re-designed the processes, eliminating those which overlapped or where non value-add activities. Profiled the requisite skill sets to perform the processes. Re-designed the departmental teams around the processes based on like skills. Prepared an implementation plan.

Client Benefits

The main client benefits were:

change-management

...

Creating a Customer Centric Company

Background to the assignment

Our client is a market leader in their service-based industry, with 110 physical sites and 6,500 people employed. The business is profitable, with a customer base of 14 million and three principle competitors.
Their strategy had been to offer their customers best value for money in a very competitive marketplace and to focus on operational excellence. Whilst this formula had driven success for several years, it was becoming increasingly apparent that the future required a different approach.
The client was beginning to recognise that the experience they were giving their customers was not as good as that provided by some of their competitors and was not taking full advantage of the advances in technology that were transforming the customer experience in other markets. Their IT systems were not up to standard and they didn’t have the technology or skills required to communicate effectively with customers in an internet and mobile enabled world.

Our approach

Our initial brief from the client was to review their strategy and proposed initiatives and to develop and help them manage a change programme encompassing their various strategic initiatives.
When we had conducted our initial review, it became apparent that a more fundamental change was required. It was clear that, in spite of their success to date, they had failed to focus on the customer and had a poor understanding of customer needs and attitudes.
They had also placed little priority on the development of a strong brand, which meant that they were increasingly at a competitive disadvantage. One symptom of this was lower pricing and inferior margins. Another was unprompted brand awareness significantly lower than that of their competitors.
We concluded that their strategic plans needed to be placed in the context of an overall change programme focused on the customer. We worked with them to produce a programme of work that would not only address their need for new technology, but would also begin to build a customer and brand focused culture throughout the organisation. This was the genesis of the “Customers-r-us” programme.
Underpinning the programme was the strategic premise that they should move from competing purely on value and operational excellence to a proposition based on a better customer experience and a more desirable brand.
The programme on which we embarked looked like this:

change-management

The programme’s central goals were related to development of the brand and the customer experience. In addition to hard financial targets that would improve EBITDA multiple, the programme was designed to achieve improvements in customer frequency, spend and loyalty.
The programme itself had a twin focus – the On-line and Physical customer experience – underpinned by engagement and alignment of staff and driven by customer insights.
In recognition of the breadth of the changes required, we formed Change Teams for each component of the programme. These teams consisted of people at different levels of the business, jointly facilitated by Jamesford and client team leaders. This approach ensured that the client owned each aspect of the change, whilst allowing for Jamesford to introduce best practice and keep progress on track.
The teams were integrated in a strategic oversight group and progress was regularly reported to the client Executive Team.

What we did

The programme comprised of the following principal activities:-

  • Customer research
    • Qualitative and quantitative research to ensure full understanding of customers’ current views and their desires for the future. Also the establishment of brand tracking benchmarks to enable measurement of brand strength over time.
  • Staff research
    • A comprehensive cultural survey to understand current values/behaviors and how these would need to change to meet customer needs. Development and embedding of future organizational values.
  • Brand strategy
    • Review and development of an effective brand proposition to compete effectively in the future and align with the business objectives.
  • Systems strategy
    • Strategy development, systems selection and project managing the implementation – the company had legacy systems which needed to be replaced in order to deliver an efficient service and facilitate the on-line marketing strategy
  • E-commerce/e-marketing strategy
    • Planning and project managing the implementation – the e-commerce platform required re-development to enable the capture of customer data for targeted marketing. Development of an e-marketing strategy targeted at four key customer groups.
  • Customer service proposition
    • Development, testing and piloting a new customer service proposition to meet emerging customer needs.
  • Physical site design
    • Development of a physical site design brief to meet customer needs, improve the customer experience and align with the new brand
  • Identity and Communications
    • Evolution of the brand identity and internal/external communications to deliver the new brand proposition.
  • Staff alignment/engagement
    • A programme of staff engagement to ensure understanding of the change and their individual roles in making it happen.

The results

The “Customer-r-us” programme represents only the beginning of a much longer journey for the business. Transforming the customer experience and building brand equity are not changes that happen overnight in any organisation. Nonetheless, there have already been significant benefits from the work to date.
The foundations of change have been firmly embedded in the business. Customers and Brand have been placed at the forefront of the strategic intent and operational delivery. The organisational values are now regarded as a key component/enabler in the delivery of the brand promise. The new IT systems have been delivered to time and budget and are already producing the improvements promised.
Early indicators of tangible benefits emerging are:

  • 40% increase in customer satisfaction
  • 1000% increase in on-line booking
  • 48% increase in staff satisfaction
  • 300% increase in stakeholder value

The story continues…

...

Improving a Wealth Management Company

Background

Our client is one of the major Guernsey-based Wealth Management service providers. Their services cover Investment management, trust provision and currency management for private clients. The business enjoys long standing relationships with both clients and introducers.
The market for Guernsey based wealth management services is likely to show continued moderate growth of 5% to 10%. However, there is a significant change in mix of business underlying this forecasted growth:-

  • lower value structures, in particular low value UK resident non-dom business, are in decline and the current economic crisis may slow demand from higher value UK resident non-doms in the short term;
  • however, multi-national clients, particularly from Eastern Europe, the Middle East and the Far East are a rapidly growing segment of the market; and
  • the funds administration market in Guernsey, in particular of expert funds, is expected to show strong growth.

The forecasted change in business mix and the changes in the marketplace are an opportune time for a review of the business operations to ensure its effectively and efficiently managed.

Consulting Assignment

Our client asked us to undertake a business review to ensure the operations were effectively organized to meet the challenges ahead.

Key Project Activities

Analysis and Design

We undertook a detailed analysis of the activities to understand the scope of potential change. The analysis covered:-

  1. Business environment, supplier and customer views
  2. Business objectives, strategy, products (investment management, trust management, currency management), structure and culture
  3. Key operational processes (efficiency, effectiveness and risk assessment)
  4. Cost to serve for the key product areas.

The areas for improvement consisted of:-

  1. Business development . New client acquisition rates over the past few years have been low. This is due to:
    • Not targeting those introducers with a greater focus in the growing HNWIs segments
    • Client directors spending too much time on internal responsibilities and historically conducted only limited sales and marketing activities
  2. Business Growth. There are income stream opportunities:
    • Fund management opportunities include managing cash assets, FX trades, insurance products and investment monitoring
    • The recent funds initiative has been quite successful so far, and further growth is possible
  3. Operational risk. The operating processes for investment management and currency trading had developed over the years. Key areas for change:-
    • Irregular and insufficient management information
    • Little evidence of a systematic “plan-do-review” of trades and exposure
    • Inadequately documented policies and procedures. Plus evidence of policies being circumvented.
  4. Operational Efficiency & Effectiveness. There are significant opportunities for improving staff utilisation and recovery rates:-
    • Currently, Administrators, Book-keepers, and Accounts Preparers have a utilisation rate of c.60% and Managers currently have a utilisation of only c.50%
    • This has not been addressed due to a lack in management focus, a weak IT system and poor management information
  5. Organisation. There is a need to enhance the ‘bench-strength’ of the manager layer to provide greater support to the directors in client delivery work

We then documented the key areas and nature of the changes required to address the above weaknesses.

Implementation

We put together three change teams and one expert team to develop and implement the changes. The change teams comprised of key members of the client staff pus our consultants and the expert team comprised of our consultants and the CEO. These teams under took the following key activities:-

  1. Business Development & Growth (change team)
    1. Business development:-
      1. Identified key customer segments and key business introducers
      2. Developed marketing and contact plan
      3. Allocated responsibility for implementation and changed accountabilities for partners (moving admin to managers)
      4. Rolled out plan
    2. Business growth:-
      1. Developed growth strategies for Fund Management (including cash management), Foreign Exchange and Insurance products
      2. Developed and introduced enhanced reporting and review processes
  2. Operational Risk (change team)
    1. Reviewed existing key processes (Fund Management, FX Management) using process map techniques.
    2. Critiqued processes/procedures with stakeholders (including senior management, compliance, operating staff)
    3. Developed robust, effective processes
    4. Developed robust policies and procedures to support the process
    5. Developed robust reporting processes
    6. Prepared implementation plan
    7. Implemented
  3. Operational Efficiency & Effectiveness (change team)
    1. Reviewed management data and developed enhanced management information system (short term:- use of existing data and spreadsheets; long term:- new time recording system).
    2. Prepared process maps for the key activities looking at efficiency and effectiveness aspects. Critiqued existing processes with stakeholders and developed more efficient processes eliminating poor utilisation of resources.
    3. Implemented changes.
  4. Re-organisation (expert team)
    1. Developed an organisation structure to match the operational process needs
    2. Developed associated skill needs, employee assessment and development plan
    3. Recruited several key managers to support partners.

Client Benefits

The outcome consisted of a plan for growth supported by a re-organised back office with best-in-class operational processes and lower risk:-

Case Study no 47 - Business Dev

The benefits included:-

  1. Jointly designed so reduced resistance to change
  2. Growth plan, incremental EBITDA:-
    Case Study no 47 - EBITDA
  3. Reduced risk profile (and clean audit)
  4. Effective back office
...