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Smarter change

Productivity Review

Field Office Administration

NSW Public Sector
Large Agency
Centralised Corporate Services with regional processing


Economic pressures to reduce administrative labour costs in more than 100 regional centres meant that our client needed smarter ways to process regionally and interact with Head Office.


Verify headcount savings identified an internal review; identify practical ways of managing activities  to allow headcount reductions

Approach & Method

We consulted Head Office and the Regions about what they understood was done regionally and centrally, and found multiple conflicting views.
We identified all processes and mapped the most labour intensive ones.
From this information we identified substantial error rates and redundant activities – for example:

  • Triple handling
  • Manual processing when technology was available
  • Unmet equipment needs
  • Unbatched processing

Across Regions and Head Office we noted there were no SOPs, creating substantial lost time in misunderstandings and reinventing the wheel for common processes.
On the basis of this data we verified the previous headcount numbers and identified extra savings.


In less than 3 calendar weeks we:

  • Identified savings of $8.5m annually (organisation constraints reduced realised savings)
  • Confirmed the client could improve their processes significantly
  • Recommended a staged approach which allowed time to relocate staff and continue to maintain their level of customer service.

Solutions focused on:

  • Appropriate use of databases and communications technology
  • Rationalising forms and using fewer processes
  • Eliminating activities altogether that no longer served any purpose.

As always, every client solution is different. This project required understanding of political and organisational constraints on regional processing and limits to spending on technology to improve productivity.