- Rolled out 35 Information Centres across five Directorates (all across the UK)
- Each Information Centre supported by daily or weekly briefings to discuss performance
- Facilitation of the briefings is rotated amongst staff within each team
- Management are using the Information Centres to guide their teams to problem areas
- Formal reviews and audits of each Information Centres are conducted on a regular basis
- Feedback from teams indicate that Information Centres are improving team performance
The Children’s Society (TCS) is a charity, with a mission to fight child poverty, neglect and help children have a better chance in life. TCS embarked on an organisational diagnostic, followed by Phase 1 of a full Lean Transformation programme. The programme operated on two levels – firstly, there was a focus on Lean Foundations (Information Centres, 5S, Lean training for Leaders and Champions) to achieve the required cultural change and secondly, various key processes were redesigned to maximise customer value and eliminate waste.
TCS was undergoing considerable change leading up to this roll-out, with a Lean Transformation programme and a Cost Reduction work-stream running simultaneously. The implementation of Information Centres, was set against a backdrop of organisational restructuring and staff turnover. The majority of staff had not used Information Centres before and the concept of regular (ideally daily) briefings around them represented a significant change in working style. Communication between teams was inconsistent and certain areas worked in silos, resulting in delays and inefficiencies within core processes.
Information Centres are a powerful communication and problem-solving tool, with team information and performance physically displayed on walls or boards. The objective with TCS was to give staff full accountability for performance, using the Information Centres to record and display key measures that lead to informed data-based business decisions.
The roll-out saw Information Centres set up across the charity, including one at Senior Leadership Team (SLT) level, five at Directorate level and the rest for front-line teams. The format of each Information Centre was the same (three sections – Long-term, KPIs and Problem Solving), however the content was bespoke to the team. The KPI section contained all the metrics each team needed to judge how well it is doing and what needs to change to create improved performance.
- Improved communication both within and between internal teams – also between SLT, Directorates and front-line staff
- IT reported successfully using Information Centres in various project roll outs
- Retail have reported initial success in five shops where Information Centres have been piloted
- Staff developing skills in using Information Centres (e.g. facilitation, problem solving)
Liz Walker – Finance & Corporate Services Director
“I use my Information Centre twice a week to communicate with my direct leadership team. We cover any exceptions and metrics on a Monday to aid managing the performance of our directorate, and we review the Master Schedule on a Friday to keep on top of key strategic change activities and to ensure oversight of projects. The Information Centre provides a space for us to touch base, aids communication and resource planning and enables us to solve problems, and remove corporate blockages as a group.”