Achieving step change improvement in core operational processes

The majority of investments in operational efficiency gains do not hit their targets and less than 20% of the ones that do can demonstrate sustainable benefits.

If you have been attempting to substantially improve the performance of highly complex core business systems and processes within the context of a demanding and changing operational and business environment, you are by no means alone.

In many settings, all of the “easy” answers have already been found; skilled members of the company’s team have been looking for years for ways to improve the core system in question and have been applying point solutions to identified pain points to continue to tune performance.

What is required is “operational innovation”, a fundamental reconsideration of the underlying logic behind the system or process. we have developed a method for operational innovation that we call Principles Based Redesign™.

Principles Based Redesign

Every system is based on a set of design principles, whether explicit or implicit. Over time system or process complexity usually increases to adapt to changing circumstances. This often takes place without re-assessing the underlying logic or design principles and fending of any challenge to the status quo with “that’s how it has always worked”.

Once we know what these principles are, we can begin to challenge them by investigating relevant forces of change that affect system requirements and context, looking at analogues of similar systems in other companies in other industries that seem to operate on different assumptions.

Đơn giản hóa triệt để

Key elements of our approach

  • We engage leaders on developing a shared perspective of the future
  • Identify drivers of change and their impact on our business
  • Understand our core competencies and how they can be leveraged
  • Challenge our thinking on company and industry conventions that can lead to disruption
  • Identify opportunities for growth in our core business, adjacencies and white spaces
  • Define how we will play to win in current and future markets
  • Develop multiple pathways and clear plans to achieve our goals


By applying innovation techniques to management principles we can produce dramatic shifts and step changes in performance. The result is a realization that the design logic behind our current way of doing things, while well suited to past conditions, has become obsolete as external conditions or internal performance requirements have changed. More agile approaches, (digital) technologies, funding models etc. can lead to significant opportunities for efficiency gains.

Example Packaging Design, Consumer Products

bao bì

A major consumer packaged goods company found that, despite several efforts to improve the responsiveness of its Packaging Design function and process, the brand manager clients of the process were increasingly dissatisfied with the system’s speed and cost.

As a result of using principles based redesign, the client reconfigured the system around a new set of principles. The packaging group shifted from a service function to a market driven model that allowed for much better resource and project portfolio planning.

Example Major Capital Projects, Global Energy Company

dự án dầu khí

A leading global energy company has been plagued by underperformance in its major capital projects (e.g., offshore platforms, LNG processing plants, etc.) with some individual mega-projects several years behind schedule and billions of Dollars over budget.

The principles based approach resulted in a shift from maintaining process quality to an outcome driven one that recognised interrelated risks and created a sense and respond capability to deal with truly unforeseeable disruptions.

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