Fortune 500 Metals & Mining :: Collaboration + Innovation

Business Challenge:

This $5 billion Fortune 500 mining company has operations scattered around the globe; and each location relies on an extended network of constructors, consultants, communities and governments in order to explore, build, mine and reclaim the land.  The challenge was that each location was acting on its own – conducting similar activities in parallel but without any awareness of each others issues, ideas or insights.

This resulted in mechanics struggling with a tricky diagnosis that had already been unlocked elsewhere, a geologist being puzzled by a core sample that had been identified by a colleague on another continent or a Supervisor that heard a vendor for another region had a critical fix for his haul trucks but didn’t know who it was, how to get ahold of him or time to try.  They were wasting time, money and opportunities for innovation while increasing frustration.

Solution:

Orbital RPM conducted an Organizational Network Analysis [ONA] to determine the professional fabric of the organization and a Value Network Analysis [VNA] to determine how work from headquarters was affecting regional sites.  The results revealed virtually no interaction between sites and teams in headquarters that were not supporting their colleagues in the field despite their best efforts to do so.

Orbital RPM used this information to build Knowledge Networks that now collaborate globally and enjoy easy access to the knowledge of their peers, vendors, and everyone else they count on for success.  This formed the basis of what is now their Knowledge Management department and included an implementation of Social Software from one of our recommended partners.  This is a good example of our Organizational Learning solution.

Our project was merged with their innovation initiative to provide the infrastructure for isolated ideas becoming better submissions through input from the network.  Orbital RPM also provided consulting on the process and structural elements of the initiative which is represented by Innovation Management.

Outcome:

People can find what they need when they need it – that includes from members of an extended network that were highly dispersed.  Instances of work being duplicated or time lost due to a problem that has been solved has reduced dramatically.  They are on track to build a prototype mine that will serve as a test bed for innovative ideas.

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