National Physical Laboratory – Logistics Service Improvements

Achieved an 80% reduction in process cycle time and reduced a £600k risk liability through improving the import and export process

How we helped...

The National Physical Laboratory (NPL), the world-leading centre of excellence in accurate measurement standards, science and technology has been a client of ours since 2016. The laboratory maintains a wide portfolio of internationally visible research programmes that supports various cross-disciplinary technologies and as part of this it relies on the logistics service to successfully import, export and courier their packages.

NPL was experiencing consistent problems with their logistical team; packages to customers were lost or delayed, and important paperwork relating to importing and exporting of goods was not being managed.  Logistics started to develop a bad reputation for their customer base and amongst their scientists, who were losing time trying to track down their packages.

We were commissioned to undertake a Lean Six Sigma review on the logistics service and subsequently commenced a series of activities, including a Voice of the Customer (VOC) exercise and a time-and-motion study of the logistics process in action.

A number of improvement solutions were swiftly generated and prioritised following a full root-cause analysis. With the support of operational leadership, we were able to implement some quick wins and some longer-term solutions to demonstrate a significantly improved service.

Using Lean Six Sigma and Change Management techniques, we were able to realise and demonstrate numerous benefits including:

  • Savings in excess of £1m
  • Improved process cycle-time by 80%
  • Improved staff engagement and retention
  • Reduction in lost parcels (down to zero lost parcels)
  • Improved the rate of parcels delivered on time
  • Improved customer confidence

The Contract Director was pleased with the benefits delivered:

“Continuous Improvement Projects were faced with several challenges when undertaking the Lean Six Sigma exercise on the logistics service, but overcame them well and produced valuable outputs that enabled a significant and demonstrable service improvement. The overall result was an improvement in staff engagement, end-user engagement, process efficiency and an overall improved service that aligned to the customer’s expectations.”

To find out more about our Lean Six Sigma Review Service Package, click here.


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