£16m efficiency improvements for UK aerospace and defence prime
One of the UK’s largest aerospace and defence prime contractors engaged us to help them reduce costs, improve competitiveness and develop new capabilities. We helped them deliver major process efficiencies, procure and implement new IT, clean up their engineering data, and develop new business intelligence capabilities.
After a long period of acquisitions, mergers, cost reductions and re-organisations, this geographically dispersed division was left with highly complex, poorly understood and undocumented processes, and very inefficient and costly IT.
We were initially engaged to carry out a high spot review which gave the business a clear definition of the problems they faced. This provided the impetus to set up a business transformation programme to deliver a range of major improvements.
Key problems and challenges
At the outset the major concern raised by the business was the complexity, inefficiency and cost of their IT systems. However, in the course of the six-week high spot review it became clear that IT was definitely a problem, but it was dwarfed by the problems we found in the wider business. These included:
Process problems – several key areas of the business had highly complex, poorly documented and inefficient processes.
Poor User Skills and Capabilities – many staff lacked the training or on-the-job experience they needed.
Data quality problems – much of their critical engineering data was inaccessible, in different formats and poorly integrated.
Outdated business operations – in key areas the business was operating in a reactive, cumbersome manner, particularly in its key customer interactions.
Complex and costly IT – Much of their IT was complex and inefficient including obsolete and duplicated applications and poorly architected systems.
On completion of the high spot review the business immediately kicked off two work streams to deliver “quick wins” – i.e. early financial benefits. In parallel, we finalised the business case, achieved group level sign-off and then established the full transformation programme of five key workstream:
- Business Process Redesign – we mapped out key existing processes; applied lean techniques to remove non-value-adding activities; and then specified, procured and implemented a new IT system to underpin the new “to-be” process.
- Strategic Investment – BI-led in-service support – we worked with the business to define and deliver a new capability to provide business- intelligence-led support for in-service support.
- Data Improvement – we helped the client to categorise and prioritise their major engineering data problems, and then procure a fixed priced service to deliver the required clean up, migration and integration into their product data management (PDM) system.
- IT Rationalisation – the client led and delivered the work to remove obsolete and duplicated applications and to rationalise the underpinning network, database and end-user devices.
- User Support – we supported the client in establishing and delivering a people change management programme, including communications, training and “at elbow” user support.
The integrated transformation programme quickly delivered tangible benefits. After the first six months, the quick wins had delivered £300k in savings, and in the second year of delivery £1 million of cash savings were delivered. After completion of the delivery programme the business is on track to deliver the full planned cash benefits of £16 million over five years of operation.
“All the work was delivered on time and budget, and to a very high level of quality. We have delivered the target financial benefits and we are delighted with the outcomes Monro Consulting has helped us to achieve”.
Transformation Programme Sponsor and Divisional Finance Director