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Featured insights on issues that are shaping the future of organisations.

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Mark-Patch
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Meet Prominence consultant Mark Patch

A former Director General within the Defence Materiel Organisation, Mark had a 31 year career in the Australian Defence Force before becoming an independent consultant. Mark's experience covers strategic management, project leadership and assurance of high risk and high value initiatives in the public and private sectors. With a passion for giving back, Mark is Chairman of two not-for-profit charities supporting the underprivileged in the Redlands district of Brisbane. What's the most exciting part about your job? Working with a broad range of clients across a diverse industry landscape. In particular, being able to share lessons that we have learnt with our clients and witnessing the benefits of seeing them apply those lessons. What's something you find challenging about your work? Working with our clients through the transformational change many have had to implement to survive. What was your first job? I delivered milk in the streets of Wollongong from 4.00am as a 15-year old - and loved it. What's the best professional development book you've ever read? John Maxwell's 'The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership'. What's the best piece of advice you've ever been given? My boss once told me to "Fess up early and fess up often". Do you have a favourite charity or not-for-profit you wish more people knew about? Cereal for Coffee which provides breakfast to the 20% of Australian school kids who arrive at school not having eaten breakfast and thus lose 20% of their capacity to learn. What would the title of your autobiography be? Patchwork with a Purpose. What are you reading at the moment? Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (with my granddaughter). If you could tell your younger self one thing, what would it be? Your children are your legacy. Love them unconditionally and recklessly.

SERVICE:
All services
INDUSTRY:
All sectors

Meet Prominence consultant Mark Patch

A former Director General within the Defence Materiel Organisation, Mark had a 31 year career in the Australian Defence Force before becoming an independent consultant. Mark's experience covers strategic management, project leadership and assurance of high risk and high value initiatives in the public and private sectors. With a passion for giving back, Mark is Chairman of two not-for-profit charities supporting the underprivileged in the Redlands district of Brisbane. What's the most exciting part about your job? Working with a broad range of clients across a diverse industry landscape. In particular, being able to share lessons that we have learnt with our clients and witnessing the benefits of seeing them apply those lessons. What's something you find challenging about your work? Working with our clients through the transformational change many have had to implement to survive. What was your first job? I delivered milk in the streets of Wollongong from 4.00am as a 15-year old - and loved it. What's the best professional development book you've ever read? John Maxwell's 'The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership'. What's the best piece of advice you've ever been given? My boss once told me to "Fess up early and fess up often". Do you have a favourite charity or not-for-profit you wish more people knew about? Cereal for Coffee which provides breakfast to the 20% of Australian school kids who arrive at school not having eaten breakfast and thus lose 20% of their capacity to learn. What would the title of your autobiography be? Patchwork with a Purpose. What are you reading at the moment? Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (with my granddaughter). If you could tell your younger self one thing, what would it be? Your children are your legacy. Love them unconditionally and recklessly.

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INDUSTRY:
All sectors

Meet Lauren Ryan our Business Support Coordinator

Lauren is Prominence's Business Support Coordinator. She's been a part of the Prominence family for a number of years, and has now joined us full time. A wonderful asset to the team, Lauren is a quick learner with a 'can do' attitude. She's also extremely creative and passionate about sustainability, reuse and upcycling! What's the most exciting part about your job? Learning! I have always loved to learn and always sought information even in my downtime through podcasts or developing skills and hobbies. It's exciting to be in a new role that continues to challenge and educate me. What was your first job? I worked as a nursing assistant in the veterinary clinic my parents owned. From a young age I often visited with my father at night when he was on call, helping where I could. I started working there after school officially when I was fifteen. This nurtured my love for animals and inspired me to adopt my first dog, Carrie, from a rescue. What's one career you wish you could have? I have always been creative and have a background in Fine Arts. I would love to be self employed in the arts someday. I'm also passionate about sustainability, reuse and upcycling. There is an increasing overlap between these passions, especially within online communities. I am inspired by Australian creators and influencers that I follow online who have built their careers from simple YouTube or blog tutorials to being international brand ambassadors, spokespersons, role models and educators for sustainability. I would love to leverage the skills I am developing in business now to one day be in business independently. What's the best professional development book you've ever read? 'Oh, the Places You'll Go!' - Dr Seuss. Perhaps not the answer expected but the one with the most impact on my life! It's a message that followed me from childhood to my first day of university, where my lecturer centred her orientation presentation around the book. Do you have a favourite charity or not-for-profit you wish more people knew about? I wish more people knew about the different ways you can reduce or recycle waste through certain organisations and not-for-profits that can use the waste to benefit society. REDcycle for soft plastics is becoming more widely known - but you can also collect bottle caps to make prosthetics for children (Lids4Kids) and bread tags to make wheelchairs (Aussie Bread Tags for Wheelchairs). Torn and damaged clothing can be recycled with UPPAREL and coffee cups and straws at 7-Eleven service stations. It's better to first reduce waste and re-use, but if you can't do that - recycle! What's something you want to do in the next year that you've never done before? I hope to become a first homeowner which is simultaneously daunting and exciting. What would you do and where would you go if you were a tourist in your own city? I think Brisbane is a really beautiful city, with views enjoyed best from the cliffs at Kangaroo Point. I would take a walk along the river at sunset, then walk up the steps to the cliffs to see the lights of the city at night. I'd spend the day visiting Newstead House and park or GoMA and the Queensland Art Gallery.

SERVICE:
People, process and optimisation
INDUSTRY:
All sectors

Workplace conduct – prevention is better than the cure

Each day, millions of Australians go to work and have positive interactions with their customers, colleagues and leaders. It's natural that some days there will be tension within the workplace and employees will make genuine mistakes and, in most cases, everything is forgotten overnight and it's back to business as usual the next day. However, there are then the situations where this may not be the case such as: discrimination harassment criminal activity anti-competitive behaviour undisclosed conflicts of interest misappropriation unauthorised disclosure of official information. Where these situations arise, the consequences can often be wide ranging including business disruption, financial and reputational losses, impact on mental health and wellbeing, welfare issues, loss of employment and in extreme cases, lengthy and costly legal proceedings, fines and custodial sentences. To prevent workplace conduct issues the key is to develop clear and effective policies, codes of conduct, detection, and intervention procedures, which is certainly a common-sense solution, however, within many organisations, still overlooked. Prevention is better than cure... The rampancy of workplace issues around the world and across all levels of an organisation, reveals that either codes of conduct are not being established or they're not being effectively implemented from the top down. It also exposes that an ad hoc approach to addressing workplace issues can cause far greater disruption, taking business leaders away from their core business and costing them far more than just their bottom line. With a clear, relevant, and well-communicated workplace conduct policy in place, one that accurately reflects the organisation's values and is measurably upheld by everyone alike, the above situations can often be prevented. In other words, prevention is better than cure. The best place to start in preventing workplace conflict and issues is by: Developing clear and effective policies, codes of conduct and procedures unique to your organisation's culture Training your leaders and employees on policies, codes of conduct and procedures to ensure standards and expectations are set and implemented Assessing compliance risks on a regular basis and developing effective controls to reduce the risk of adverse conduct issues Auditing to help detect any adverse conduct issues occurring in your workplace Surveying employees to establish an understanding of your workplace culture and levels of engagement Investigating workplace issues using a clear, pre-defined protocol so you can take immediate action if an issue arises Mediating with an impartial and independent viewpoint to ensure employees resolve conflict swiftly and so that each party involved is satisfied with the resolution. While these may be commonly understood measures, we understand business owners and managers may lack the time, resources, or experience necessary to develop, implement, train, monitor and audit such measures. Prominence Consulting has nearly two decades of expertise in putting in place policies, procedures, and training to help prevent conflict in the workplace, as well as expertise in investigating and resolving workplace conduct issues, so please get in touch for a confidential discussion to establish how we can add the most value to your organisation. Contact us to learn how together, we can shape your future

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All services
INDUSTRY:
Infrastructure

How the Internet of Things (IoT) is bringing benefits to the infrastructure industry

There are a range of challenges facing the future of infrastructure relating to sustainability, resilience to climate change, whole-of-life costs, connectivity, traditional congestion as well as additional uncertainties brought about by COVID-19. These challenges are both complex and interrelated which will require changes to our traditional approaches to infrastructure planning, investment and optimisation. New technology undoubtedly has a key part to play in dealing with the complex challenges we are facing and innovative technologies such as the Internet of Things (IoT) and cloud computing are no longer mere gadgets or nice-to-haves. The worldwide number of IoT-connected devices is projected to increase to over 40 billion by 2023 and with the roll-out of the 5G network, the rate of uptake will continue to accelerate. The cost of IoT devices is likely to continue to fall, whilst computing power will continue to rise which means the application of this technology will be limited only by the imagination of the users. Craig Haughin, Industry Director - Infrastructure, Health and Community Services at Prominence Consulting, discusses how this fast-developing digital age is helping the infrastructure industry deliver greater benefits. Infrastructure Planning Many cities and towns around the world are turning to IoT to solve various urban problems, such as traffic congestion, and to improve the safety and quality of life of their citizens. By deploying IoT technologies such as smart sensors throughout a city, on a bridge, on a road, or in a building, governments around the world can accurately forecast future infrastructure requirements. This ensures money is invested wisely, future infrastructure demands within society are satisfied, new infrastructure assets are seamlessly integrated with the overall city network, and future resource skills and industry needs are known well in advance. Infrastructure design In the post-COVID world, a new set of challenges has emerged for those planning and designing infrastructure, making it even more crucial to use technologies that help solve these challenges quickly and effectively. The construction sector has been using Building Information Modelling (BIM) for quite some time now, which represented the industry's first steps towards digital transformation. However, during the COVID-19 lockdown, BIM has become increasingly important, enabling projects to continue in digital and virtual environments even when people were unable to physically meet on-site. Taking a step further, BIM can be used to effectively design 'smart' infrastructure projects. According to the technology giant IBM, once a building is up and running, data from IoT sensors can be pulled into the BIM to understand energy usage patterns, temperature trends or people movement throughout a building. As well as assisting with optimising the ongoing operations of an asset, the data can then be used to optimise future designs. Infrastructure sustainability Currently, Australia's construction industry is estimated to be responsible for 18.1% of the nation's total Carbon Footprint (CF). Given global commitments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and combat climate change, the Australian construction industry urgently needs to adopt more sustainable methods and practices. Sustainable designs is not merely the use of sustainable, energy-efficient material or the use of intelligent prefab technology during the construction phase. Today, it involve the creation and use of IoT systems to minimise energy use, to detect leaks and to allow energy companies to drive greater efficiencies. Article continued below infographic. Infrastructure construction Many IoT technologies are introduced in this space each-and-every month; each with their own set of benefits when it comes to delivering timely access to the right information and keeping a project on track. When it comes to 'smart' construction management technologies, the latest cloud-based systems are capable of integrating information provided by the IoT. For example, Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems allow diverse information to merge into a single, all-encompassing platform so that the project managers can effectively manage the entire lifecycle of a project under one management system. With so many processes simultaneously at play, these systems give decision-makers in infrastructure construction companies the power to monitor, track, and analyse project performance 24/7, improving the profitability of each project by reducing costs and mitigating risks. Infrastructure operation and maintenance Collecting and analysing infrastructure asset data has historically been difficult to achieve as it often requires on-site access for monitoring, inspection and testing. However, numerous companies are now using innovative technology to enhance and streamline Operation and Maintenance (O&M) once the infrastructure asset has been constructed giving them the power to predict and prevent. In most cases, IoT is offering the ability for remote real-time monitoring of assets. For instance, real-time traffic monitoring and optimisation has the potential to ease congestion points across the infrastructure network, while 'condition monitoring' systems help monitor and maintain the condition of existing assets in real-time, with the potential to reduce the whole-of-life maintenance costs. By analysing and comparing historical data from these IoT systems, asset owners and operators can identify trends that indicate when a problem will occur in the future. This allows them to implement preventative maintenance strategies rather than adopting a reactive, and often expensive and disruptive, breakdown maintenance strategy. Contact us to learn how together, we can shape your future

SERVICE:
People, process and optimisation
INDUSTRY:
All sectors

Reducing costs and improving service delivery are not mutually exclusive

Now more than ever before organisations are under increasing pressure to improve efficiencies and reduce operating costs without compromising safety or quality. For many leaders, knowing where to start and how to approach this can be a daunting challenge. In our experience, there are a number of key factors which are critical for success, including: identifying the initiatives which offer the highest return / benefits ensuring there is senior sponsorship adopting a structured and focused approach having roles and responsibilities clearly defined generating engagement within the workforce supporting the initiatives with appropriate resources and skills ensuring a smooth transition into Business as Usual (BAU). Our experience is that when these improvements are managed well, they have an average payback period of less than three months and generate significant benefits in the following areas: employee engagement - employees who work in a more efficient work environment are always more engaged customer experience - customers who are serviced by an efficient organisation have a more positive experience income / revenue - a positive customer experience positions an organisation well to secure a larger market share cost reductions - reducing waste has the potential to deliver a direct positive impact on the bottom line capacity increase - reducing waste opens up more time to service other customers. Over the last decade, Prominence has developed and optimised a process known as FLIP (Facilitated Lean Improvement Program) which is a simple Lean Six Sigma approach that uses a project based methodology to resolve issues and drive efficiencies. Prominence has repeatedly delivered FLIPs to organisations in various industry sectors, including health, defence and not-for-profit to realise significant benefits such as: Not-for-profit organisation - achieved a reduction in annual employee onboard costs of over $200,000 and reduced onboarding time by 25%. Defence and defence industry - achieved an average FLIP payback period of less than three months with total cost savings running into many millions of dollars across 20+ Lean process improvement projects. Health - improving the Patient Off Stretcher Time (POST) key performance indicator from 75% to 82% for an Emergency department. "FLIP is a powerful tool for organisations as it involves cross functional teams working together to develop sustainable solutions to key challenges faced by organisations and the FLIP process also generates significant buy in. The model of FLIP has a teaching component so team members not only solve the problem they are working on, but learn a new way of 'Lean thinking' which can be used in their roles on a daily basis to improve efficiencies." Kate Prohasky (MBA, Lean Six Sigma Black Belt) View our FLIP overview Contact us to learn how together, we can shape your future

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All services
INDUSTRY:
All sectors

Communications

COVID-19 is deeply shifting the ways in which we live, work and do business. The demand on business leaders, executives, and board members to effectively communicate with their employees, customers, investors, and stakeholders has never been so high, or so critical. Our dedicated COVID-19 Advisory team are here to support you in assessing and reshaping your marketing and communications plan, to develop the necessary frameworks for effective communication (internally and externally), and to ensure your organisation is always leading with clear, transparent and timely communications. "No longer are leaders just running a business; they are now running a virtual community where clear, regular and effective communication with employees, customers, investors and stakeholders is critical to its success." Leanne Ryan, Managing Director of Prominence Consulting Our tailored COVID-19 Communications services include: Communications Planning: During times of uncertainty, it is critical for organisations to establish clear, consistent, and transparent lines of communications with employees, customers, investors, and stakeholders. Using our proven and robust planning process, work with our Advisory team in assessing and reshaping your objectives for communication and outreach, and establish a clear COVID-19 Communications Plan to ensure you are consistently crafting the right messages, targeting the right people, at the right time using the most effective online and offline channels. Communication Plan Implementation: Work with our Advisory team to ensure effective implementation of your Communications Plan. Our 16+ years of operations has given us the experience as well as the know-how to deliver integrated communications campaigns that are on-message and support your business objectives. We will work with you to effectively implement your COVID-19 communication initiatives with impact, ensuring you keep your employees, customers, investors, and stakeholders feeling engaged, informed and performing. Leadership Communications Development: During a crisis like COVID-19, people look to leaders for confidence, care and compassion in navigating the company into the future. Through our tailored leadership development programs, we equip leaders with a range of skills and techniques to ensure they are connecting with your people effectively with a focus on establishing trust, confidence, and commitment. Media and Presentation Training: Work with our media training experts to prepare you and your leadership team for the full spectrum of COVID-19 issues and scenarios. We will equip you with skills to effectively communicate complex messages, and to deliver live or pre-recorded presentations with confidence, including: media interviews, webinar presentations, podcasts, video announcements, streamed events and more. Our team of media training experts are also backed by our sector experts, which gives our training programs a unique edge for Senior Managers and Executives in specialised appointments, departments, or industries. Investor Relations: With COVID-19 comes unpredictability and uncertainty. Organisations must remain agile in their communication with shareholders and strive to be appropriately transparent. Work with our experts to develop an action plan to improve investor and shareholder communication and confidence, including revised reporting arrangements and frameworks. Marketing: Using our proven framework to assess the political, economic, social, and technological (PEST) landscape, work with our team to evaluate, reshape and affirm your organisation's unique position and value proposition for today's and tomorrow's marketplace. Consider the 'new' behaviours, needs and wants of your customers and realign your marketing initiatives to ensure you are delivering results-driven campaigns, to the right people, at the right time using the most effective channels. All our services have been designed for face-to-face and remote delivery. COVID-19 Initial Diagnostic Review Package We recognise that some organisations may benefit from a baseline organisational assessment to help them better understand which key areas require focused support. Prominence is offering an initial COVID-19 Diagnostic Review Package where our dedicated team will collaborate with you and your team to benchmark your organisation's response across a broad range of areas including, but not limited to: strategic response and recovery planning workforce planning and restructuring communications health and well-being strategic partnerships supply chains.  

SERVICE:
People, process and optimisation
INDUSTRY:
All sectors

People

Drawing on years of industry knowledge and experience, our COVID-19 Advisory team can support you to empower your leadership team, guide your organisation through workforce planning and to more broadly support you as you reshape and reform your organisation through the COVID-19 crisis and beyond. "As clients are trying to strike the difficult balance of keeping their employees safe and maintaining key business functions, they are requiring timely support and skills to navigate the uncertainty and complexity that COVID-19 continues to bring" Leanne Ryan, Managing Director of Prominence Consulting Our tailored COVID-19 People related services include: Leadership Development: Most organisations are experiencing unprecedented disruption and leaders need to be fully equipped with the required skills to lead their teams effectively. Through our tailored leadership development programs, we equip leaders in skills such as effective communication, understanding emotional intelligence, leading through change, building high performing teams, managing performance, holding difficult conversations and resolving conflict. Building Resilience: As organisations continue to make significant changes and routines have been disrupted, this can result in high levels of uncertainty amongst employees. Through focused coaching sessions, we can help individuals and teams reflect on their resilience and develop simple but effective strategies to help them cope through one of the most difficult periods our generation has ever encountered. Workforce Planning: As COVID-19 evolves in unpredictable ways, many organisations are faced with the continual challenge of realigning their resources with new business demands. Unfortunately for some organisations, this can result in the standing down of employees or even redundancies. Work with our specialists who will safely guide you through the entire process, from developing the strategy, planning the implementation and then undertaking the necessary workforce changes in a respectful way, and in compliance with employment legislation. Outplacement Services: How well you support employees faced with the difficult process of leaving an organisation is a test of the core values of the organisation's leaders. Departing an organisation without any support can be often traumatic and can have a wider impact on families. We provide support by coaching exiting employees through the process and providing practical guidance around employment options, preparing resumes, leveraging personal networks, interview techniques, upskilling and managing their personal wellbeing. Transition Sessions for Organisational Change: When organisations are undergoing change, employees often need support to help them transition from the 'old' to the 'new'. This progression includes stages such as celebrating and acknowledging the achievements of the past, focusing on the future, and engaging in new strategies around future growth. This forms a critical part of an organisation's culture and ensures employees are properly prepared to adapt and support the organisational changes required. A single session with a core leadership team or a tailored program of sessions can be conducted across your organisation with both small and large group sizes. Remote Working Techniques: Many organisations have had to introduce remote working policies to keep their workers safe and with this brings a new set of challenges. Prominence has practised remote working since its establishment in 2003, and as such offer coaching based on our proven techniques and systems. With a focus on best-practise video conferencing techniques and etiquettes, performance management, effective teamwork, confidentiality and information security, we support you in maintaining effective communication and collaboration both internally amongst teams, and externally amongst customers, partners and stakeholders. Workplace Health and Safety: Our recent 'COVID-19 Pulse Survey' revealed that the safety and wellbeing of employees, suppliers and key stakeholders was the number one priority for 58% of organisations. There are now new and evolving risks in relation to working from home, attending the workplace while COVID019 still exists in the community, and the mental health of employees. We can assist you in assessing these new risks, as well as developing and implementing effective controls to minimise them, whilst ensuring your organisation remains compliant with health and safety legislation. All our services have been designed for face-to-face and/or remote delivery. COVID-19 Initial Diagnostic Review Package We recognise that some organisations may benefit from a baseline organisational assessment to help them better understand which key areas require focused support. Prominence is offering an initial COVID-19 Diagnostic Review Package where our dedicated team will collaborate with you and your team to benchmark your organisation's response across a broad range of areas including, but not limited to: strategic response and recovery planning workforce planning and restructuring communications health and well-being strategic partnerships supply chains.

SERVICE:
Strategy and planning
INDUSTRY:
All sectors

Strategy, Planning and Risk Management

Drawing on years of expertise from across all our business sectors, our COVID-19 Advisory team are here to support you in stabilising the issues you are currently facing, to review your organisational health and to reshape your strategy and planning to ensure you are in the strongest recovery position possible following our COVID-19 Organisational Management Model. "The current pandemic is challenging Australia's public and private sectors in unprecedented ways, but recovery is on the horizon for organisations willing to review and reshape their position." Leanne Ryan, Managing Director of Prominence Consulting Our tailored COVID-19 Strategy, Planning and Risk Management services include: COVID-19 Impact Assessment: Taking you through our structured and comprehensive COVID-19 Impact Assessment process, you and your stakeholders can be confident that there are no 'blind spots', your short-term action plans are robust and every aspect of your organisation is considered. Recovery Planning: Over time a 'new normal' will emerge, restrictions will begin to ease, and activity levels will increase. Work with our expert team in establishing a clear pathway forward for your organisation, using our proven planning process, to ensure you are in the strongest recovery position during and post COVID-19. Strategic Reviews: Many aspects of your overarching business strategy may have been impacted and no longer be valid. Gain an independent review of your strategy and use this as an opportunity to reshape your approach. Governance and Risk Reviews: The pandemic has changed the risk profiles and operating structures within most organisations. As we progress through this year, there will be new, evolved and increasing risks (including cyber security) emerging. To ensure your organisation is not left exposed, our team of risk experts are here to support you in reviewing your governance and risk management arrangements. Strategic Projects: Some organisations have already identified key strategic projects which will assist them in the recovery and reform of their organisations. Developing these projects from concept to execution requires focused effort. Our specialist consultants can assist you in the review and/or full development of these strategic projects for optimal outcomes. COVID-19 Initial Diagnostic Review Package We recognise that some organisations may benefit from a baseline organisational assessment to help them better understand which key areas require focused support. Prominence is offering an initial COVID-19 Diagnostic Review Package where our dedicated team will collaborate with you and your team to benchmark your organisation's response across a broad range of areas including, but not limited to: strategic response and recovery planning workforce planning and restructuring communications health and well-being strategic partnerships supply chains.