Business Services

Client: Specialist Savings and Lending Bank

Assignment: Piloting Lean to identify opportunities for performance improvement

Specialist Savings and Lending Bank

The Problem

The organisation was developing their overall approach to operations and new ways of working and recognised a need to build a ‘Continuous Improvement’ culture, underpinned by shared approaches to ongoing improvement to drive efficiency and effectiveness across operational processes.

As a result, they needed support to build internal process improvement capability and capacity; develop and deploy an ‘In-House’ Way of Continuous Improvement and embed the developed approach into the organisation via targeted deployment in critical functional areas to drive measurable efficiency and effectiveness.

Bourton Group was selected to design, deliver, and support an operational improvement programme across the bank.

The Solution

Working with Chief Operations Officer and the Operational Leadership teams, we identified areas that would provide both a representative environment for piloting Lean and offer clear opportunities for performance improvement.

We led a series of workshops for the functional heads to provide them insights into Lean and gain their endorsement of the proposed approach.

We delivered a series of six targeted Rapid Improvement Events on-site and then remotely, to prove the concept and deliver business benefits across Payment Services, Savings, Business Finance, Structured Finance, and Property Lending Divisions. This approach drove waste out of the processes, identified improvements/ solutions and allowed participants to plan the actions required for implementation.

We began delivering Rapid Improvement Events on-site, however, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, we quickly equipped ourselves to engage with the Bank and its team to deliver the Rapid Improvement Events and other workshops by working remotely.

We developed the full capability to conduct virtual workshop sessions using user-friendly remote collaboration platforms. We focussed our effort to better engage teams remotely in brainstorming, process mapping, problem-solving, solution development, and decision making by developing the ability to collaborate simultaneously and to maximise the effectiveness of remote interactions.

A wave of new streamlined processes, frameworks, and new ways of working were developed as outcomes of the operational improvement programme and were being implemented in phases with key performance metrics monitoring new levels of performance.

Additionally, we focused on developing a Continuous Improvement culture within key operational teams. By training them to adopt the Lean Daily Management System (LDMS)® we were able to clearly demonstrate how Lean works daily at the team level and the benefits it brings. LDMS® is being progressively adopted, and trained internal Lean practitioners now lead Rapid Improvement Events.

Bourton continues to provide direct support to complex projects providing specialist Lean tools tailored to suit operational challenges.

The Benefits

  1. Six Rapid Improvement Events delivered over a nine-month period resulted in ‘Year on Year’ operational savings of more than £450k within key operational areas
  2. Initial reduction of customer lead-time of at least 18 days in some key customer service processes
  3. Over 150 team members trained in Lean tools, and now working within a Continuous Improvement culture

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