Sunday, 17 May 2020

CASE STUDY: LEAN PROCESS / BUSINESS IMPROVEMENT

TASK:Project manage review of infrastructure operations, identify areas for improvement and manage implementation of improvements

ROLE:Project Manager/Consultant

ISSUES:Infrastructure operations was under resourced with a few technical experts and insufficient staff. Managing day-to-day maintenance, upgrades, patching was difficult. However the additional work required to understand and achieve standards like ISO27001, ISO9000, SOC2-type1 and SOC2-type2 was unachievable with current resource. Additionally the lack of technical expertise elsewhere in the business meant that they often called upon the Infrastructure operations team for support, further undermining the ability to support Infrastructure.

ACTION:Looked at how to reduce demands upon Infrastructure operations, for example improve the other teams abilities so that they didn't call-upon Infrastructure operations. Looked at the variety of products and services and made recommendations to standardise and streamline a smaller product set with a view to being expert and in-control rather than always trouble-shooting and researching endless possibilities. Then sought to review the staffing and the approach to education.The key challenge being whether the organisation should be CLIENT FOCUSSED (understanding banking, trust, commerce, retail) or SERVICE APPROACH (the business will research, report, recommend and support what-ever you choose) or PRODUCT APPROACH (the business is expert at ABC and doesn't do XYZ) Once the decision is made all our staff, training, documentation should align. Also looked at impact of marketing strategy: whether to go for retail high-maintenance and low-profit customers or wholesale, low-maintenance and high-profit customers. The choice impacts the approach to Infrastructure operations and the balance of responsibility between supplier and customer.

OUTCOME:Following some role changes, progressed towards reviewing the contracts and the new definitions of which products and services are supported. Also looked to increase use of technology to allow customers to self-service. A significant decision was to become an infrastructure re-seller, greatly reducing the demands upon the in-house Infrastructure operations team. By the end of my engagement the business had greater clarity of issues and resolutions although not all the recommendations had yet been implemented.

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