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Case Study

Driving productivity in complaints handling.

Higher capacity, lower cost

Rapid and variable expansion

With growing and unpredictable complaint volumes, a major high street bank was challenged to deliver a significant uplift in complaint handling capacity.

The activity centred on a high-volume, staff-intensive and multi-product process over five operational sites. The operation had been constructed at speed with staff of variable experience, and was expanding rapidly (with a projected rise from 1,200 to 1,800 FTE). A bespoke process had evolved, including a number of workarounds with variable application across the sites.

Much of the expert resource had been deployed to support the volume ramp-up, with very limited focus on process improvement activity.

There was insufficient capacity to review all incoming cases resulting in a high proportion of ex gratia payments and significantly increased costs.


A simpler process

OEE Consulting led a cross-functional team tasked to deliver a 15% productivity uplift through case review process improvements, which included:

  • Simplification of the end-to-end decision-making process and systems, removal of duplication and consolidation of some steps
  • Better definition of policy, and alignment of the decision process with policy requirements
  • Rationalisation, simplification and semi-automation of customer communications

A range of operation management priorities were identified to respond to common needs of the business on each site. Improved control of performance was introduced through enhanced planning processes, visual management, workflow management and interval control. Team leader capability was enhanced through a focus on individual assessment and one-to-one coaching.


Ongoing savings

30% productivity increase

The supported sites successfully delivered productivity improvement of 30-40% due to the streamlined process and more effective operations management practices.

Cost savings of £4m per year

The equivalent of around 350 FTE capacity was created, enabling the operations to fully review all incoming cases, eliminating ex gratia payments and saving millions of pounds in payments per month.

Lasting results

With effective training, coaching and skills transfer throughout the project, the operational teams were left with the capability to continue working on the upgraded practices and sustain further improvements moving forward.

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