Team Effectiveness

Team performance prioritised as shared services are privatise

A large public sector organisation divesting its HR, Finance and IT shared services operations to a global business process outsourcing (BPO) company in the private sector, responding to the government’s modernisation and privatisation of the public sector.

Its objective was to help the public sector organisation – which collects £4 billion in revenue each year as part of its work – to introduce new ways of working and greater efficiencies, to reduce costs for taxpayers.

We were brought on board to assist in two ways: firstly, to provide HR consultancy and project management services to support the divestment and transition of employees to the new BPO organisation; and secondly, to help develop the relocated teams and their effectiveness as quickly as possible.

How we did it

Following a six-month bid, working collaboratively as part of a larger bid team, our role was to lead the transition of HR services to the BPO partner. We made plans for the transition and beyond.

A large part of this was helping employees to adjust to working within the new organisation, supporting them to feel part of a wider team, and motivating and engaging them to ensure service remained exceptional during and post-transition.

We adopted our tried-and-tested approach to team effectiveness to deliver exactly what our client was after. This was shared with the team and involved:

  • Identifying both organisations’ expectations for delivery, so we fully understood the changes needed.
  • Assessing the team dynamics and capabilities. We did this by observing, gathering feedback and using psychological tools to help us establish the current state of play.
  • Developing models to evaluate performance. This would enable us to support a change in team behaviours and capabilities.
  • Building emotional resilience to support the team in improving its effectiveness and performance.

We worked closely with the teams to define what ‘team effectiveness’ meant to them and to agree the post-transition standards and expectations. This was written into a customer service charter, and a development programme with one-to-one support was established to help employees upskill. Our approach helped the team to adopt an improvement and growth mindset, which would support the organisation on an ongoing basis.

By gathering feedback from stakeholders, we were able to re-align the teams around common delivery goals and the new set of customer service standards that had been jointly agreed. We created common goals, clear roles and developed an understanding of working styles, personalities and preferences, which would help the teams to work more effectively together for positive outcomes.

In addition, we helped the organisation to build a new model of leadership to facilitate great performance, and to create an environment focused on successful change. The concept was to bring out the best in everyone – and the best results, through empowerment, risk taking, decision-making and supporting talent to rise.

“Agile teams are more effective and deliver results because they regularly pause to reflect on their goals and ways of working.”

The result

The success of the project was measured using data which focused on results and client outcomes. The indicators were agreed at the start and focus groups enabled us to establish the baseline we were working with.

Data was gathered at both three months and nine months post-transition. This demonstrated a steady increase in performance and team effectiveness, aligned with the changes we were making.

Excellent customer service delivery standards were being provided to the public sector client as a result of our work, and we were proud to have played such a significant part in the delivery of this project.