Background

The client is a marketing and communication agency delivering the full range of agency services, predominantly, although not exclusively, to the charities sector.

Over the recent past the company had grown impressively but, not content to rest on their laurels, the board wanted to continue the aggressive growth path. A number of tenders had been applied for; a few of which had been won. However, over time it was noticed that registration to the management system, ISO 9001, was increasingly being seen as a requirement, almost “a licence to operate”. Also, as the company had expanded, there was a real desire to “smarten up and codify” the internal business practices and processes.

Objectives

The expected benefits of the programme were outlined at the very first meeting and included:

• “Getting more business” (by being able to jump through tender hoops more effectively and more easily)

• “Going into other areas [of business] we can’t access at the moment”

• “Being more efficient”

Current position

As part of the initial assessment, a number of comments were made by members of the management team at the Agency, as follows:

Strategy

• “Where we are complete and utter hypocrites is when it comes to vision, goals, strategy and tactics ………..although this is always the first question we ask of clients”

• “What we don’t do, and should do, is longer range planning”

• “What we do need to do is have monthly meetings, or meetings each quarter, to hit some of the bigger issues”

Operations

• “We’ve never missed a critical delivery date – but we leave chaos behind it”

• “We could be better at monitoring and then controlling over-estimates of times”

• “We could schedule much better”

Customer satisfaction

• A lot of clients are long-term and complaints come fast – but we don’t do any post job analysis with new clients, and we should…….… we have lost a significant client because we didn’t”

Training and staff development

• “It’s very informal and needs to be better”

Finance

• “There is a (finance/invoice) procedure they think we are adhering to and they are not!”

Additionally, it was commented that “I think there will come a time when some of the larger charities (because of tighter rules and regulations and due diligence requirements) will demand it”.

The implementation programme was then specifically designed to address these critical issues and others. Essentially, the programme brought order to some of the chaos and allowed the company through doors that would otherwise have remained closed.


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