Case Study Northpower




New Zealand

Company Size

1200+ Members

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Northpower maintains and operates both the electricity distribution and fibre networks in the Whangarei and Kaipara regions on upper North Island, New Zealand. Its contracting business provides construction and maintenance services to some of NZ’s largest electricity networks and prides itself as continually redefining service delivery to driver performance to help communities thrive.

The Challenge

Driving consistent service delivery to customers across different contracting branches comes with challenges. There are always opportunities for the different teams to learn from each other and apply better practices and innovations. An area of growing concern has been how ‘design estimation’ are made with customers. Design estimation is the upfront process that provides a quote to customers and determines the work to be delivered by Northpower project managers and engineers. It is a complex process that not only varies by geographical region, but also by the different types of jobs.

Northpower needed external help that could act independently and bring together its teams to facilitate sessions from a position of neutrality. Boxfish was engaged to drive consistency and efficiency in the design estimation process. A key challenge for Boxfish was bringing together stakeholders from various geographies to standardise the design estimation process and make it Lean.

Our Solution

Boxfish applied the 6 R’s process improvement methodology enabled by the Boxfish digital platform. The 6 R’s methodology accelerates the traditional Lean approach. During the transformation journey, Lean events were ‘rapidly’ completed, value stream analysis automatically ‘reported’, and improvements generated to ‘reimagine’ the process. This was all achieved in virtual workshop sessions to cater for the geographically spread stakeholders and restrictions due to Covid.

A key to enabling this virtual work environment was the use of the Boxfish digital platform. This platform captured inputs from workshop participants by walking through the end-to-end current-state of the design estimation process. From the data insights on the process, the platform clearly showed areas of significant waste to then capture improvements.

Key Outcomes

Northpower has a clear roadmap for making improvements to the design estimation process based on data-driven decisions. Following the 6 R’s process improvement approach and using the Boxfish platform has enabled Northpower to:

  • Unite stakeholders across all regional offices on a common definition for major, minor and customer tender project work as well as their current-state processes .
  • Identify measurable value-add, non-value add and waiting times and associated cost to the business.
  • Capture, prioritise and track progress of completing improvements.
  • Develop staff in Lean to instil a culture of continuous improvement.

The Boxfish Difference

We combine world class Lean techniques, deep Energy and Utilities industry knowledge and our Boxfish digital platform to ensure targeted outcomes for organisations. Whilst our competitors end at producing a future-state process, our approach and digital platform continues the journey with organisations to track improvements through to completion for sustainable change. This is where the rubber hits the road and true transformations happen.

Boxfish enabled us to quickly gain data insights to how we perform design estimations and make significant improvements.”

Andreas Gabler (Group Manager, Northpower)

If you’re wanting a uniquely different option that unites, not divides your business, contact us.

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