Lean review

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  • #21809
    Anonymous
    Guest

    At the moment, our council has come consultants in doing a ‘lean review’ of all its processes.

    The Benefits office is next in line for a review.

    I was just wondering if anyone else has been through a similar process, and if you found it beneficial? What sort of changes did you make as a result of the review?

    #5886
    Anonymous
    Guest

    Hi Sam. We’re going through the same process at the moment. I haven’t been involved myself, but the teams piloting it seem keen on it. I’ll have a nose around and get back to you.

    #5887
    Anonymous
    Guest

    The public sector seem addicted to paying consultants large sums of money so that they can identify areas where money can be saved. As I understand LEAN thinking (which is the new black in management circles) the idea of a separate contact centre doesn’t fit in, so in our organisation the consultants were never invited back because the Chief Executive didn’t like the message!

    #5888
    Anonymous
    Guest

    Do you have any links to documents that discuss your comment about LEAN thinking and the use of front office / back office segregation

    #5889
    Julian Hobson
    Participant

    In my opinion LEAN thinking is actually about two things (as far as benefits goes).

    1. Desisigning processes that are as efficient as they can be by removing unnecessary reworking and delay. If you actually looked at the real time you spend “doing” a claim it would be counted in minutes, all the other “days” that it takes are actually days waiting for something to happen (usually waiting for the customer to provide something) and of course if you can remove those delays then the end to end time is reduced.

    2. Reducing “failure demand” which is any demand on your time created by a deficiency in the process (e.g. telephone call from the customer to ask what is happening with their claim). A significant resource is allocated by every LA to answering for failures in the system rather than ensuring that the system works and the resources are actually allocated to the system.

    So the argument goes that the “corporate” call centre was created to answer the calls created by the failures in the system. If you engineer out the failues by redesigning the system then you don’t need the call centre.

    It is also possible to argue that the existance of the call centre in the “system” creates its own failure demand and so becomes or is a problem rather than a solution.

    #5890
    Anonymous
    Guest

    We had John Seddon down (the man himself, Google him) and this was one of his key messages. As Julian says, contact centres create failure demand because the customer is rarely dealt with at the first point of contact.

    #5891
    Dawnie
    Participant

    We went through the process – you can read all about it in Opportunities dated 09/11/09

    Rushmoor Borough Council

    #5892
    simondoyle
    Participant

    We’ve been practicing systems thinking for a couple of years now. In 2006, we took back our customer contact service from our corporate customer call centre and deal with all customer contact ourselves.

    It works … and you don’t really need to spend megabucks on consultants to tell you the bl**din’ obvious.

    Have a look at this website … there are some specific case studies about benefit services….. http://www.thesystemsthinkingreview.co.uk/

    #5893
    markg
    Participant

    If you take a look at the Oct 09 issue of IRRV ‘Benefit’ magazine you’ll see 2 articles ; one from South Ribble, and one from Plymouth. Both amount to the dsame thing ; proces-mappping, and eliminating ‘waste’ (as alrweady said above). Should give you an idea of the sort of things likely to be identified and improved upon.

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