Effectus uses business architecture to help Parliamentary service think holistically
The Parliamentary Service (PS) are typically focused on operational delivery. A great deal of what they offer is tailored to particular groups or individuals and their general operating environment is complex and often dependent on ‘heroes’ to keep the boat afloat.
PS ICT group were keen to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of service delivery, but with so many different service variations, pathways and approaches it was hard to see the wood for the trees. They suspected there were opportunities to consolidate and constraints that were really hurting them, but they lacked the resource and expertise to communicate these in a way that would resonate with the business. So, they asked Effectus to help provide a single point of reference that would support all these (and other) service improvement discussions.
Step one of our approach was to work collaboratively with the client to quickly build up knowledge about their organisation and its work. We have highly experienced consultants who can do this quickly, and in this case we had someone work on the engagement who had spent nearly twenty years working in central government in Wellington and already knew the terrain!
The second step was to turn this knowledge into a holistic one-page picture of PS. We call this view a service capability model. This allowed PS to see themselves, with all the complexity and duplication removed. We call this phase ‘reverse engineering the blueprint’ – because in essence that is what our clients receive.
With a blueprint, PS were able to start thinking about capabilities that were missing or immature. For instance, both stakeholder and service request management were critical services in the blueprint – but neither were services that had clear ownership, or systems to support them. The blueprint also highlighted (visually) just how important asset management was to PS, but again how little systems they had to support the process.
Our approach to the blueprint removes any service-line silos. Typically, it highlights duplication and opportunities to consolidate. However, for PS the opportunities here were less significant.
Our pragmatic use of business architecture techniques unearthed significant insights into what PS need to improve to be more efficient and effective in their service delivery.
It provided PS with a Rosetta stone reference point for other parallel discussions, including future mergers and target state and provided the ICT group the means for leading a more strategic conversation with the wider business. One the CIO hopes to re-establish, post-election upheaval.
“Effectus quickly assimilated our complex business and turned it into a useful ‘single view’. Now we can start to have more effective conversations about what we need to change, and why…” Robert Lockerd, CIO