Recruitment agency

  • Sector : HR
  • Time saved : 30 hours/week
  • Money saved : € 18,720/annually

#Challenge Accepted

We have been asked to review existing processes and procedures within the organisation and propose improvement solutions.
Some of the issues were highlighted:

  • Processes within the finance department were too complicated.
  • Weekly reporting contained errors. The errors were significant, rather than minor; performance of the weekly board meetings was being affected.
  • The staff spend too much time on selected tasks.
  • There was no SOP's (Standard Operating Procedures) in place. The same tasks were carried out differently in two different offices (one in UK and one in Ireland). There was a need for a structure at local level as company is going to expand globally and is planning to open two new offices very soon.
  • #Our Approach

    Our aim was to reduce cycle times, eliminate defects and enhance its productivity and quality.
    Lean and Kaizen all the way.

  • From the beginning we told all employees our plan; what we are trying to do, why we were hired, how long it might take and that everyone will need to spend time to save time. That we want to help everyone to be more productive, be less stressed when approaching deadlines.
    From our experience, we know, that employees might be scared that their job might be at risk with all the robotisation. We ensured all employees that the automations that we will implement won't make anyone redundant, but it will improve quality and make their day more productive. Their skills are more important and need to be used efficiently during the day and 'robots' will only help them to perform better day on day.
  • We were going to investigate if the errors in weekly reporting were caused by "human error" or by the system and eliminate them.
    In order to find it out and fix, we mapped existing processes and analysed them. We have identified the major areas of strengths and weaknesses.
  • The staff spend too much time on selected tasks, ensure its quality which was still containing errors.
    We also wanted to increase employees' morale and make employees' work more enjoyable, because happier employees lead to higher productivity.

  • We wanted to engage every employee in this transformation. The more time we spent with each person, the more details we were given and this helped us to get enough information to know each process better and propose better solutions for improvements.
    The more the tasks owner was engaged in the project, the better results we achieved.

    Also, the higher engagement rate during the project, the higher effectiveness level of the project when completed.

    #Solutions

  • Old and outdated Excel templates which were created by former employees were replaced with new robust templates and user friendly automated solutions. It was taking an average 2 days to complete weekly reporting and it could go as high as 3 days.
  • Computer system that was used to produce reporting was used only in 50% of its capabilities. The other 50% was populated manually and contained errors on a weekly basis. There were no manuals available on 'how to' use main system efficiently and use advanced options. The Subject Matter Expert (SME) within the company was asked to run training sessions with other team members to show them more advanced options to generate ad hoc reports, not to rely on old functions saved long time ago.
  • Standardisation of processes between two offices was a must. Standard operating procedures were developed and all SOP's were written and distributted among employees. During this excercise some processes were also improved, shortened and adjusted to present needs.
  • Conventional paper invoices to be switched to digital invoices.
  • Software used onsite to be adjusted to meet the highly specialised needs of this implementation.
  • We also identified training needs and some employees were very eager to gain new skills and learn how to troubleshoot basic issues by themselves .
  • #Results

    The business was seeing a time save within a matter of days.

  • Average time to process sales invoices dropped by ~64%
  • Average time to produce weekly reporting dropped by ~87%
  • Annual operating costs reduced by € 18,720
    30 hours saved * 52 weeks in a year = 1560 hours saved

    Calculation:
    (number of total hours saved) * (hourly rate paid to employee carrying tasks) = total savings

    1560 * € National Minimum Wage = € total savings
    1560 h * € 10.30 = € 16,068 per annum (National Minimum Wage employee)
    1560 h * € 12.00 = € 18,720 per annum (average of hourly wage of employees in this project)


  • Other benefits:
  • Employees are more satisfied
  • Employees are more knowledgeable and motivated
  • Automations that speed up processes are error free, quality improved
  • The feeling of stagnation was eliminated
  • Employees are happy to be part of future improvement projects
  • Standard operating procedures (SOP) are available for new employees, so onboarding process is more smooth and effective

  • Our solutions were implemented to meet higher volume of work when company expands. The beauty of automation is that there is no need to hire more employees as it works well no matter how small or big the workload is. Our solutions can meet increased demand in business in no time.

    #Happy End

    During this project we were called names (nice ones!) and at the end we were the Shiny People .
    Thank you!