DIO is responsible for managing the military estate, including accommodation for Service personnel and their families, on behalf of the MOD. DIO’s Estate Priorities, aligned to the Defence Strategic Objectives, include providing support to current operations, delivering improvements to Service living accommodation and delivering an estate of the right size and quality, centred on or around sustainable defence communities.
In order to manage the day to day operations of the company, DIO has been operating a Business Management System since 2006. Whilst extremely innovative and novel to begin with, the system has not evolved at the same pace as the organisation itself, resulting in a ‘fall-off’ in employee compliance and process improvement which in turn has lagged the pace of changing operations.
With this in mind, the Continuous Improvement Team at DIO proposed a major refresh of the system to improve and broaden good practice, build quality and learning into all processes and improve process/business alignment.
Subsequently accepted and approved by the Head of Secretariat, the organisation agreed the following criteria to achieve it:
- The system should engage employees so that they actively and consistently seek to use it across the organisation.
- All information required to complete a task should be available in one place including task instructions, associated data including automated workﬂows and documentation.
- The system should enable learning to be captured so that processes can be continually improved.
E-Squared’s flexibility enabled the DIO Continuous Improvement team to undertake this work largely unaided.
E-Squared software was already being used by DIO as the underlying process and portal management software for the original BMS. Since the change in the BMS’ structure consisted of a design change rather than a technical change, E-Squared ensured that the programme was highly cost-effective and continually evolving.
Despite extensive consultation prior to the build and detailed testing across two operational areas afterwards, the whole design to pilot process took less than six months to complete. In addition, the positive response to the pilot has meant that the system can now quickly roll out to the remaining operational areas with minimal further effort.
As a result of the new BMS, DIO now has a powerful system which:
Ensures that going forward, all processes will be developed in a similar fashion to an agreed set of common standards
Focuses management effort, since it represents a single version of the truth, fully endorsed by the DIO Board
Will enable process learning to be continually captured and thus operational effectiveness continually improved
Will sit above and control the automation layer; ensuring that staff have every piece of information they need to do their jobs, right at their ﬁngertips
Requires little external input to manage. All of the required skills now exist internally within DIO.
DIO will be applying the new BMS across its entire operations including its Next Generation Estate Contracts (NGEC) Programme.
NGEC is an innovative programme to develop the most cost-effective mix of estate contract models to meet the future needs of Defence. From 2013 the current arrangements with industry to provide management, maintenance and development of the UK Defence Estate will expire; the NGEC programme will replace these arrangements with a mix of contracts that deliver the best possible service for the Armed Forces and achieve real value for money for the UK taxpayer.
As DIO moves towards this point, whilst also conducting its £350m estate rationalisation stipulated in the Strategic Defence Review, the optimum use of processes to create further efficiencies whilst maintaining full military effectiveness will become critical to DIO, the MoD and the UK as a whole. In achieving that, the new BMS will doubtless play a vital role.