Results & ROI
- Process time in Purchase Ledger reduced by 3 hours per week
- Cost savings in Purchase Ledger £10,000 pa
- Time saved in analysing & absorbing Forecasts £68,000 pa
- Staff time preparing forecasts reduced thus saving £10,000 pa
- 30% reduction in issues dealt with by IT Helpdesk, saving £9,000 pa
- Reduction in need for responsive repairs in Estates.
Livability is the UK’s largest Christian disability charity, providing a wide range of services for disabled and disadvantaged adults and children. Formed in 2007 by merging the Shaftesbury Society and John Grooms, the charity is a relatively new name, but has 160 year-old foundations. The charity’s ambition is to grow and become more efficient.
Becoming more efficient with existing resource, whilst still growing, in an increasingly difficult market poses a number of challenges. Livability wanted a proof of concept review for Lean, starting in the Resources Directorate, comprising Financial Accounts, Financial Business Support, Estates Management and IT (ICS – Information and Communication Systems). The purpose was to:
- Demonstrate how implementation of Lean can assist the charity to achieve its strategic aim of becoming more effective and efficient
- Stabilise key processes within the department to better enable growth of the charity i.e. ensure processes can cope with growth
- Improve processes and ways of working to reduce waste and increase capacity.
Across the four areas we led diagnostic work which defined key processes and mapped their value streams, involving staff working in those areas. We found:
Purchase to payment process
Lack of control over the suppliers used and therefore over quality, cost and management, Purchase Ledger had to deal with a disproportionate number of invoices, excess checking and authorising, unnecessary hand-offs, lack of traceability and visibility, lack of standard processes
Staff not clear on the purpose of forecasting, little ownership in service delivery staff, lack of standard processes or tools
IT service desk
Focus of the team was primarily on fixing system failures not prevention, lack of documented processes
Focussed on planning works but not implementing, focussed on getting budget rather than completing works, works identified were reactive, lack of ownership and clear lines of responsibility.
Overall Livability now has more standardised processes with better information for better decision-making. Staff are now more engaged in identifying and making improvements, more critical of their processes, and are better able to align improvement to their respective customers. The work not only improved processes but has also set the teams up for further continuous improvement. Based on the outcome of the pilot across Resources departments, a rollout of Lean to other departments has followed.