Case Study

Operational Excellence: Lessons from Urban Waste Management

Innovative solutions and strategic improvements from an Operational Interim lead to a remarkable turnaround for a waste management company facing financial challenges amid leadership changes and external crises

By Claire Lauder

The Client

The client's main activities are municipal waste, recycling, and collection from 250,000 households in a major UK city. They provide street security and cleaning for council buildings, schools and other local buildings. There are approximately 850 employees, and the business has a turnover of around £55m.

The Challenge

The business had undergone several changes of senior leadership over the past two years, and because of that, the various impacts of COVID, Brexit, and the cost of living crisis led to a challenging financial situation where the business was heading for a significant loss. In addition, due to the many changes in senior leadership, operational improvement had stagnated, and no one within the business had that focus or capability.

The Solution

The approach developed for the client was quite bespoke and varied according to the challenges presented.

They all involved setting up cross-functional teams, using lean business improvement tools and facilitating workshops to gain consensus and drive change implementation plans to deliver improvements.

The Results

Business analysis led to savings of £50k made through the cessation of a weighbridge project and re-justification for a can/plastic sort machine for a new facility – value £1m approx.

From the process improvements, significant improvements were made to reducing overtime spend to budget levels, reducing late PO approvals by 20%, setting a new compliant process for POs and creating a plan to reduce agency use significantly.

The introduction of the tiered daily meetings significantly reduced email traffic and improved communications (direct feedback received from managers).

Ready to transform your business operations and drive success? Contact Claire Lauder today to discover how our tailored solutions can help you achieve your goals!

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