Planview Blog

Your path to business agility

Customer Success

Royal Bank of Scotland Received Project Award

Published By Esther Porter-Quinn


We are excited to announce that the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) was named winner of the Project Award for Operational Efficiency at the 2019 Real IT Awards Ceremony in London.

Lead by Stephen Marjot, the Change Centre of Excellence team set out to a clear vision in mind––to make RBS the industry leader in customer service, trust, and advocacy by 2020. One of the ways the team achieved this transformation was through an initiative known as the “I Want Funding” user journey. This project focused on improving the internal investment process, reducing the time it takes for funding to be allocated, approved, and governed.


Of course, delivering this transformation was no easy task. Marjot and his team had to adopt a new project management approach and optimize the way they collaborated to ensure everyone involved was working outside of departmental silos.

To ensure that his department’s initiatives ran smoothly, the team adopted a Lean-Agile approach that was aligned with one of the bank’s top core values, simplification. Using this approach, the team set out to deliver value faster to their internal customers by focusing on:

  • Continuous planning and innovation
  • Continuous delivery
  • Continuous improvement

This focus on simplicity meant that the team could limit data collection to just enough to inform decisions being made at that time. This created a mindset shift that caused teams to prioritize working solutions over excessive documentation, so that teams could actively respond to change rather than simply following a plan.

Marjot and his team also created an idea-to-value blueprint based on SAFe, which ensured his teams were applying Lean portfolio principles while using a combination of Agile and traditional methods to execute work. One way this was achieved was by creating two-week feedback loops that involved releasing a prototype, soliciting feedback from internal customers, and then repeating the process.

To measure the success of his initiatives, the team set out to achieve the following six objectives:

  1. Reduce approvals from multiple controls within three governing bodies to a single control embedded in a tool.
  2. Scale back cycle times in order to deliver value more quickly.
  3. Shorten cycle times to approve scoping.
  4. Reduce the required documentary evidence for beginning a program from three artifacts to one.
  5. Automate workflow, turning project kick-offs into a 24-hour process rather than a two-week one.
  6. Retaining a single, independent assurance review to ensure the project operates within risk appetite.

We’re excited to announce that the Change Centre of Excellence team achieved all six of their success measures, reducing program commencement to as little as two days in some cases. They were also able to significantly reduce the time it took for programs to move into P1, going from a 4-6-month process to a single month.

Ultimately, Marjot’s team successfully reduced cycle time for investment funding by 500%. In the past, cycle times took longer than six months, now the average cycle time is less than a full month. On top of that, the bank is now able to approve initial funding requests within a week, dramatically enhancing the level of customer service offered to internal investors as a result.

Amplify and Expand Agile Team Success WhitepaperWhile it was Marjot’s strategic vision and innovative management techniques that delivered this transformation, Planview® Portfolios helped simplify the journey. With the help of innovative features like automated reporting, customizable Kanban boards, and strategic planning tools, the Change Centre of Excellence team was able to collaborate with teams like Finance (FP&A), Operational Risk, and IT more effectively. This meant that all teams involved could work together to achieve a common goal, which they accomplished without even requiring a special budget.

Congratulations to Stephen Marjot, the Change Centre of Excellence team, and the rest of the Royal Bank of Scotland who helped make this collaboration a success!

Related Posts

Written by Esther Porter-Quinn

Esther Porter-Quinn is the Field Marketing Manager for Northern Europe at Planview. She is an accomplished marketing professional in both B2B/B2C across the Technology, Media, Finance, and Professional Services sectors. She has extensive experience in marketing strategy, planning, developing brand awareness, and communications in an international environment.