by Guest Blogger – Kim Tran

Recently I’ve been involved in undertaking several service reviews for various local government and private sector clients in South Australia. These reviews have kept us busy over the last few months and it has allowed me to see many rewards that have been reaped by our client organisations following implementation of recommendations from the reviews.

We have a careful process which we take in conducting our service reviews, however it is always tailored according to the needs of each client. Generally our service reviews involve assessing the adequacy, effectiveness and general review of the services delivered by the organisation, through review of background information, site visits, consultation interviews and workshops with key stakeholders, benchmarking with other councils and private operations, and then the development of an action-orientated plan, change management plan and recommendations report. The reason for this process is to allow us to gain a deep understanding of the services provided and its supporting structures, systems and processes which thus enables us to map out a comprehensive journey for the organisation to reach its desired future state.

What are the benefits of undertaking a service review for your organisation? There are many benefits, however the key outcomes include:

  • More efficient and effective delivery of services
  • Strong and proactive leadership
  • Cost savings driven  through more effective financial management
  • Clear strategic direction aligned to the organisation’s vision and values
  • Improved role clarity
  • More streamlined and efficient systems and processes
  • Improved ability to identify and manage risk
  • Objective and informed decision making at all levels of the organisation
  • A constructive culture of transparent governance, effective change management and continuous improvement.

To obtain these outcomes for your organisation, there are several things that can be done:

  • Leadership team must drive all the change initiatives and ensure effective change management
  • Consider outsourcing non-core activities, and specialist activities to reduce costs and allow your staff to focus on activities that really add value
  • Make sure effective skills and services training is in place for your staff and mentoring programs are in place to support them through the change
  • Have regular social initiatives, particularly inter-departmental initiatives to establish rapport and build relationships
  • Ensure role clarity through upfront alignment of expectations and roles on all projects and initiatives and through use of tools such as a Role Clarity Matrix
  • Look for opportunities to share knowledge with other organisations and within departments of your organisation – this will promote efficiency and reduce costs as you can capitalise on work already done rather than starting from scratch
  • Ensure effective contract management through upfront alignment of expectations with contractors, the use of contract management guidelines and training
  • Encourage staff to minimise the time spent on transactional activities and look to focus efforts on strategic high-value activities
  • Ensure identified KPIs in all major contracts – this will reduce contractual variations and help drive successful project outcomes through prioritised actions throughout the contract
  • Automate your systems and processes as much as possible by reducing manual tasks, increasing ease of access by all staff and leveraging the use of technology in the field – this drives efficiency and reduces your costs
  • Reduce paperwork where possible and practical to streamline your operations and services – less is more!

To reap these benefits it is essential that leaders are proactive in driving any initiatives. If you would like to find out more about our service reviews and how we can help your organisation, please get in touch via email  or on +61 8 8212 5752 and we would love to discuss further. Alternatively you can also find out more information here.