validus management consultancy UK

Local Government Case Study

A Scottish based Local Authority

Lean systems implementation
For improved performance


A Scottish based Local Authority


  • The Planning service within the Council was under severe pressures from increased applications and workloads
  • Staff turn-over had adversely impacted on the quality of service delivery and led to an increase in complaints
  • Further workload pressures were anticipated from implementing the proposed National Planning reforms
  • Need to fundamentally review the current operating model within the service to improve overall effectiveness, efficiency and quality of delivery


Provided expert guidance and support to the Council in:

  • Formed a joint project team to apply 'Lean' principles within the Planning service
  • Constructed full-scale value stream process maps and critiqued with full involvement from all staff within the service
  • Constructed a workload and capacity management model to give visibility to current resource utilisation and effectiveness.This included a breakdown of resources consumed by 'core' activities and 'non-core' activities
  • Carried out 'focus group' workshops with key stakeholder groups (community councils, agents and developers, statutory consultees) to define and agree information requirements and expectations to enable effective and efficient applications processing
  • Carried out a series of re-engineering workshops to define an improved operating model to satisfy both local and national imperatives
  • Developed 'milestone management' techniques to support performance management within the service and ensure visible progress of applications against targets
  • Carried out an audit of existing skills within the Planning service and identified key training requirements
  • Reviewed and re-defined key roles and responsibilities to support the new operating model
  • Coached staff in '5S' principles to streamline workflows and improve the office environment
  • Developed plans for improved office accommodation
  • Defined the detailed implementation plan


  • Vastly improved and consistent business processes defined
  • Re-distribution / re-balancing of responsibilities across grades to improve resource utilisation and develop skills and competencies
  • Improved visibility and management of workloads, including clearance of major backlog in Enforcement activity
  • Enhanced responsibility amongst officers for quality of service outputs
  • Enhanced staff skills and competencies (both technical and managerial)
  • Improved understanding and working relationships across key stakeholder groups
  • Implementation plan actioned