Case One


Service Structure Incorrect: Large Local Assignment

In 2014 – less than one year into a newly-won assignment – an agency was incurring unacceptably high losses on a major client. Due to the large size of the client this had a knock-on effect on the financial health of the entire agency. And clients were also not completely satisfied with the output.

What was done

Deep dive into job dockets going back to the beginning of the newly won assignment – what was the nature of the work?

Timesheet analysis to discover what agency people were actually spending their time on

Interviews with 9 client staff (all business units)

Agency operational audit – 30 staff interviews

Agency talent audit – 44 staff interviews

The agency was built upside-down; 80% of staff had strategic and higher-end creative skillsets while 80% of the work was day-to-day retail in nature

In fairness, the agency had staffed to a strategically-focused scope provided by the client

But reality did not match vision—there were too many juniors on the business

All work was streamed in the same way

Rebalanced the team with more emphasis on the day to day delivery skillsets the business actually required (NB without a reduction in headcount.)

Implemented proper work-streaming; fast turnaround work could now be handled in a streamlined way by a team with the right skills

Agency went from double-digit losses to double-digit profit

Agency avoided a potential pitch, which was possible after the first service period as outlined in the contract