Workplace PIN


The Workplace PIN (Performance Innovation Network) is our network that supports leaders who want to be on the leading edge of thinking in matters work, place, change and innovation. One of our members is BDO.

BDO is, of course, one of the UK’s leading accountancy firms. It has several thousand accountancy professionals and consultants on its payroll and is constantly seeking ways to deliver more to it’s clients, whilst using it’s people in the most innovative way.

It’s Chief Operating Officer, Mark Sherfield, was keen to understand what the firm could do to improve the productivity of its professional ‘Knowledge Worker’ workforce and understand what good practice looked like in the management of an increasingly virtual, flexible and diverse work community.

Mark decided to sign up to our Explorer Group on Knowledge Worker Productivity, which we run in partnership with The Centre for Evidence Based Management in Amsterdam. BP, Telereal, Old Mutual, Allied Bakeries and Allsteel were also involved in the group.

First, as a sponsor, Mark was able influence the research questions our team were to explore through discussions in the virtual meetings that kicked off the project. Then, once the research team had done their review of 800 academic papers, he gained direct access to the research team through the first workshop, at which the team played back the results from the initial part of their study.

Then, in the third workshop, he was able to mould and shape the tools and style of guidance papers we generated. In this study, we provided a guide which set out the subject, provided answers to questions and gave guidance on what organisations should do, as well as offering an assessment tool to help measure how teams performed on 6 factors that the research proved made a difference to the productivity of Knowledge Workers. Mark and the other members of the PIN were presented with the tools and scientific guidance that they can now apply to their organisations.

But that’s not all. Now we’re trialling the tools and the methodologies in a ‘Pathfinder’ organisation, where we apply the output from the research and monitor and quantify the impact.

BDO were also involved in the Workplace PIN our ‘Managing the Agile Workplace’ study and are standing members of our ‘Transition’ group.

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