The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea
The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea (RBKC) is the second smallest local authority in the UK, and comprises approximately 4,500 staff. It is also one of the best performing councils in the country; nevertheless, it is still faced with many challenges to improve efficiency and reduce costs as set out in various Government agendas. The Council works to provide services for all who live, work or visit this vibrant part of Central London. Whether it is going to school, borrowing from the libraries, visiting a museum, working in an office, using social services, using the refuse collections, or simply travelling through the Borough, the Council is working to ensure services operate smoothly and efficiently.
The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea uses the JD Edwards Enterprise One Financials module as its Procurement to Pay system. One of its challenges was persuading staff to use the system effectively to enable RBKC to track all its transactions. "We were looking for a key change in the way that our staff worked and used our financial systems", said Jeremy Beresford, Financial Systems Manager at RBKC, adding, "This was the key driver in searching for a solution to implement these changes."
Having investigated a number of systems it became evident that Oracle´s User Productivity Kit (UPK) provided all the elements required for this project. One key element that UPK offered was the ability to produce complete classroom training materials but also to make this material available as eLearning for users to access through the RBKC intranet, enabling continual training and support from their desktops. The UPK application had been identified and presented to the Borough by Larmer Brown, an Oracle Partner specialising in UPK. One of the goals set by RBKC was to ensure that its internal support team fully understood the tool, to enable them to continually update and improve the user training and support materials. They gained the confidence and assurance from Larmer Brown that their expectations from the implementation would be fully achievable. As the support teams progressed through each phase of the project it became clear that this project would exceed those expectations.
As Jeremy Beresford commented, "UPK really was the only tool that we found delivered all of the elements we needed in a training tool, and a partner with the experience that Larmer Brown offered was an obvious choice for us." Since implementing the system users are shown, at the end of each classroom session, how to access UPK from their desktops, at their own pace in a no risk environment. The support team at RBKC has seen major benefit where they are able to capture changes to a process and show staff, "This is what you did then. This is what you do now." Jeremy´s team has also noticed a reduction in the volume of support calls, particularly from users, post-training. "What we´re seeing now is: people that have gone through training and, knowing that the UPK product is available to them, are using that rather than coming to the support team." said Jeremy.
One of the unforeseen benefits from the implementation of UPK was this overall reduction in the number of support calls. This has in fact enabled the team to run more efficiently and with less staff.