Transitioning Seven Commonwealth Arts Agencies’ Records Functions into a new Shared Service Centre

The Client:

A leading Commonwealth Department

The Project:

We worked closely with a major national cultural institution as part of a budget measure to consolidate the records functions of seven Canberra-based arts collection agencies. The agencies’ record functions were to be moved into one new Corporate Shared Service Centre. A key challenge in this project was in applying the records function across multiple compliance-focussed frameworks and ensuring that strict records management policies and regulations were always maintained. We worked closely with the client on this project to both transition their records function to the Centre and to seek their advice on the transition of other agencies’ record functions.

The Approach:

We performed a detailed analysis of relevant records management requirements and Record Authorities to ensure that the new Shared Services Centre maintained appropriate record keeping practices. We developed policies and procedures to ensure that these strict regulations were upheld. This work was especially important considering the nature and classification of documents maintained by compliance-focussed member agencies.

A key challenge of this project was in transferring the record management function from the nominated cultural institution to the Shared Service Centre which was based with the client. The nominated cultural institution maintains an extensive collection of historically and culturally significant records utilising a number of different record authorities. These records were also present in both physical and digital form. In order to successfully transition the agency’s record management function to the Shared Services Centre, we worked very closely with the institution to ensure that their requirements were being satisfied in the new Centre and by its new processes, procedures, policies and guidelines.

The Outcome:

As a result of our extensive consultation and the support provided to the agencies throughout the design and implementation of the new model, we successfully transitioned three agencies into the new shared service arrangement. Transitions continued until the program was brought to a close as a result of a change in Government policy. The transitioned agencies were forecast to return a net $3 million in savings annually to Government whilst providing a higher level of service to those utilising the Shared Service Centre.

Following the successful completion of the implementation of the program and the on-boarding of agencies into the Shared Service Centre, the project was acknowledged with an Australia Day Award.

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Development of an operational model for a Corporate Cultural Shared Services Centre

The Client:

A National Museum

The Project:

In the context of the Commonwealth Government’s Shared Services Agenda, it was shown that substantial efficiencies could be achieved through the consolidation of common, non-core activities across the public sector. The client had sought funding to be the shared services provider for the arts and small agencies across the Commonwealth. We assisted the Museum to develop a sustainable corporate shared services framework to facilitate the records management activities of three Commonwealth cultural institutions

The Approach:

In order to develop a sustainable and rigorous framework for the Museum, we performed detailed desktop research to review processes and procedures related to the records management functions of the three cultural institutions. Part of this work involved developing a detailed understanding of the client agencies’ records management lifecycles and when record destruction and de-accessioning was appropriate. We conducted a comparative analysis of the agencies records management systems, including TRIM v.7.3.4 and RMA, to determine the licensing and processing differences and the benefits and drawbacks of each system. This enabled us to understand the complexity of requirements and specific service needs for each agency as well as the resources required between them, which we presented to the NMA.

This analysis enabled us to co-design and facilitate a planning workshop to provide an opportunity for different Commonwealth agencies to discuss shared service opportunities. This collaboration provided a rich source of data, which gave us an evidence base from which to develop four shared services record management models for consideration. These models were designed specifically around the agencies’ needs, with detailed risk analysis, financial projections and a comparison of the advantages and disadvantages of each option across all three institutions.

The Outcome:

We delivered the final options paper which explored the feasibility of sourcing low complexity, low risk and high-volume corporate services from an external shared services provider. The final option was proposed and New Policy Proposals (NPP) funding was approved.

Due to our in-depth knowledge of the requirements, we were subsequently reengaged by the Museum to support the development and implementation of a Cultural and Corporate Shared Service Centre (CCSSC).  Once the new records management model was developed, we designed and delivered training to relevant staff members to ensure that the new records management policies and procedures were understood and incorporated into the business-as-usual work of the client agencies and the Museum.

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Development of a Change Leader program

The Client:

A multinational information technology services corporation

The Project:

We were engaged to support a large corporation through their Achieve Global accredited Capable Change Leaders (CCL) Program. This program was driven by the Australian CEO and was subsequently implemented globally by the corporation. This program also won an Australian Human Resource Institute Award for excellence.

The goal of the program was to work with teams across the business to identify current behaviours, explore desired behaviours and to equip individuals with the insight, tools and support to implement the change. 

There were several modules which participants and team members were required to work through over an 18 month period which included:

  • Individual behavioural profiling and analysis (using several different psychometric tools and surveys);

  • One on one coaching sessions and action plan development;

  • Fortnightly team coaching sessions based on agreed topics to reinforce and support cultural change;

  • Quarterly workshops to develop and reinforce constructive behaviours and identify the cause of less constructive behavioural styles; and

  • A tool kit to support the change.

The Approach:

In addition to facilitating and leading over 80 staff through all modules in the 18 month program, we assisted with the:

  • Facilitation of workshops with program participants;

  • Conduct of individual coaching sessions and debriefing sessions;

  • Facilitation of reinforcement program components;

  • Workshop facilitation;

  • Training and development of staff;

  • Development of communications strategies; and

  • Program performance reviews.

The Outcome:

During the two years that we worked with the corporation on their CCL program:

  • On average, participants that were re-tested using psychometric tests identified a significant change in the demonstration of constructive styles and a decrease in the passive, defensive or aggressive defensive behaviours in the workplace;

  • The overall culture of the organisation shifted towards more constructive behaviours; and

  • Participants had become aware of their behaviours and could recognise when they were not operating in a manner which was supportive of a positive workplace.

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Business Plan development

The Client:

A large emergency services project management institute

The Project:

We were commissioned to develop a 12 month Business Plan to support the operation of the institute.

The Approach:

In order to develop the business plan, we consulted with staff and selected stakeholders to identify key activities, milestones and reporting requirements for the plan.

This included conducting in-depth interviews with:

  • The Chair of the Board of Studies to understand his expectations and requirements of the Business Plan.

  • Internal staff to understand their function and deliverables in relation to the Strategic Plan and identify appropriate activities and measures for the Business Plan.

We also designed, developed and facilitated a half day business planning workshop to discuss the draft Business Plan and resolve gaps and issues identified.

The Outcome:

Based on the information provided during the interviews, workshop and from key documents, we developed a Business Plan for the next 12 months which operationalised the institute’s Strategic Plan.

Evaluation of Post Fire Research: Post Fire Analysis Project

The Client:

A NSW Government Department

The Project:

We were commissioned to conduct an analysis of Post Fire Research practices currently undertaken by RFS. The objectives of this analysis were to understand:

  • The needs of end users (those who will use the data) with regard to Post Fire Research;

  • Whether current research questions are meeting these needs;

  • Whether the current research methodology and approach is meeting these needs; and

  • Based on this analysis, develop recommendations for future practices.

The Approach:

The project adopted a participatory approach based on consultation with stakeholders and end users for Post Fire Research. The consultation program is outlined below.

  • Consultation with internal staff:

-   Eight staff members participated in the Post Fire Research workshop facilitated by our consultants;

-   One staff member provided additional information and input following the workshop; and

-   In-depth interviews undertaken with the following internal staff members, including the:

  • Supervisor, Bush Fire Planning – Community Resilience, Operations;

  • Operations Manager; and

  • Community Engagement Manager.

  • Consultation with external stakeholders:

-   Seven external stakeholders participated in the Post Fire Research workshop from the following organisations:

  • Australasian Fire and Emergency Service Authorities Council (AFAC);

  • Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO);

  • NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI);

  • Tasmania Fire Service (TFS);

  • University of Wollongong (UOW); and

  • Western Sydney University (WSU).

We then proceeded to collate all stakeholders’ views on:

  • Current Post Fire Research focus, method and tools; and

  • The future of Post Fire Research, and how this can best respond to the needs of stakeholders.

Throughout the consultation process there was a high level of engagement and participation from staff and stakeholders who were keen to ensure that Post Fire Research practices were continued in a way that would provide optimal outcomes to end users.

The Outcome:

In addition to developing a series of project management tools, we developed a final report outlining key findings and recommendations in relation to governance.

Review of the tendering function for a global medical instruments company

The Client:

A Fortune 500 medical technologies firm

The Project:

The client had undergone rapid growth and needed a consistent approach to the management and governance of its tendering projects. We were engaged to assist the organisation to research and evaluate their structure in order to improve tendering and bid management in the government sector.

The Approach:

Our consultants facilitated a series of consultation sessions and workshops with staff and stakeholders to gain an in-depth understanding of current tendering practices and processes and to identify opportunities for improvement. Consultation included individual interviews, process mapping workshops and cluster group meetings.

Following the consultation sessions, we:

  • Developed a governance framework for tendering projects;

  • Developed a flexible project management methodology to assist the client to respond consistently to tenders;

  • Built project management tools to provide organisational wide visibility of tenders;

  • Instigated the adoption of the new project management tools across the organisation;

  • Provided support for staff to learn and adopt skills and tools; and

  • Built the capacity within organisation to continue to build and sustain these initiatives.

It is worth noting that after assessing the need, we recommended that the client could avoid the costly uptake of dedicated project management software by utilising software and tools that were already being used organisation-wide such as Excel and Sharepoint. This had a number of additional benefits including reduced costs, simplicity, and the processes, once they were designed, could be quickly understood and used by a large number of staff without the additional need for complex training.

The Outcome:

In addition to developing a series of project management tools, we developed a final report outlining key findings and recommendations in relation to governance.