Case Study

Copenhagen Citizen ServiceDevelopment of business case culture

Copenhagen Citizen Service and Implement Consulting Group

Author

Copenhagen Citizen Service is spearheading a large number of digitisation projects in the City of Copenhagen, where there is a demand for more efficient work procedures. In cooperation with Copenhagen Citizen Service, Implement designed a training programme where we worked with the method on actual cases, thus anchoring and ensuring ownership of the method in Copenhagen Citizen Service.

Copenhagen Citizen Service is responsible for the City of Copenhagen’s citizen-oriented digitisation process (Citizen 2015) and has approx. 800 employees in front office (citizen service centres) and staff functions.

Copenhagen Citizen Service is a knowledge-intensive organisation with a strong focus on project organisation. Therefore, Copenhagen Citizen Service places heavy demands on project execution, but also on executing the right projects. Up until now, Copenhagen Citizen Service has not had a standardised approach to establishing concrete and valid business cases as basis for decision-making.

Thus, the challenge is to find a method for establishing the most solid business cases to be used for:

  • Prioritisation between projects
  • Qualification and follow-up on projects in relation to realising the desired impact

A standardised business case method

Today, Copenhagen Citizen Service has a standardised business case method for how to prioritise projects with focus on realising the desired impact. The method comprises six step, which are developed by Implement, and is based on sound project management principles. It is a cascade model with focus on avoiding the “execution trap” where you bury your head in spreadsheets with little involvement of specialists, stakeholders and project owner.

The method is simple, easy to use and very inclusive.

Phillip Seidler, Project Manager, Copenhagen Citizen Service

Thus, focus is aimed at developing the business case rather than executing the project. The standardised business case method involves the classic project roles closely in the process, thus creating ownership of the established data, including the impact, which subsequently is to be realised in other departments in the municipality (e.g. in other administrations).

The standardised business case method provides:

  • A common language in the organisation
  • Focus on impact from everybody in the project
  • Ownership and involvement

In cooperation with Copenhagen Citizen Service, Implement designed a training programme where we worked with the method on actual cases, thus anchoring and ensuring ownership of the method in Copenhagen Citizen Service as well as establishing a common business case language. The training consisted of several modules with real deliverables after each module and subsequent sparring on specific assignments as well as dialogue workshops with management concerning the anchoring. The training scored 4.7 on a scale from 1 to 5.

Overview and focus on project impact

A common business case language has been established in the entire organisation, and all project managers know and use the method in their projects. The method has also created more focus on realising the desired impact and the ownership of it as the method is inclusive and easy to use. For that reason, stakeholders and managers are interested in participating in workshops with a minimum of preparation. In that way, the project manager creates ownership of impact and business case.

Furthermore, Copenhagen Citizen service has established clear roles and responsibilities in relation to the business case and in the projects, and Copenhagen Citizen Service now involves other administrations and stakeholders in the development of a business case to a much greater extent than previously, which results in more robust business cases to ensure the right decisions are being taken.