Financial Services

blue and yellow graph on stock market monitor

Typically, our clients in Financial Services will:

  • increase GI sales from 55% to 161% of target
  • increase NPS from -5 to >90%
  • reduce indemnity spend
  • decrease the time to open and fund new bank accounts from an average of 51 days to the same day
  • receive a return of 1:8 on their spend with Vanguard
  • gain 35% capacity in global Banking servicing
  • change the fundamental economics of claims handling
  • insource work without adding headcount
  • gain 80% capacity in Life servicing
  • eliminate the need for IVR systems.

From pensions to credit cards, bank loans to household claims, business banking, global account opening and payments, the Vanguard Method is achieving amazing results for our financial services clients.

All have achieved improvements in customer satisfaction, it’s been better for the people that serve customers and the shareholders have seen the benefits of improved profits.

The Vanguard Method is fast becoming the standard design in the Life and General Insurance sector. It is already been used to transform service, performance, and reduce indemnity spend in Aviva and Lloyds Banking Group. Don’t take our word for it, listen to Rob Brown!

The Vanguard Method is better for customers:

Insurance claims settlements average from 84 down to 6 days
Bank account opening and funding average from 35 days down to 38 minutes
Bond encashments average 60 days to on demand
First point resolution from 60% to 90%

Emergency Services


  • 40% reduction in false alarms (fire)
  • Reduced journeys and maintenance spend (fire)
  • 30% reduction in total recorded crime
  • Young people missing from care reduced by 75%
  • Demand due to mental health issues reduced by 50% (police)

The Vanguard Method has been used by Police Forces and Fire & Rescue services across the UK to fundamentally change the way these services are delivered. By challenging assumptions underpinning the traditional service designs and giving up government targets in favour of measures relating to purpose, better outcomes have been achieved in –

999 Call Handling

Reduced abandoned/un-answered calls
Providing expertise at the initial point of contact

Roads Policing

Non-reportable collisions administration redesigned resulting in annual efficiency savings of approx £300,000 – a 1500% ROI.

Community Operations Room

Front end/hub policing redesigned into local geographies delivering a better response to local needs
Enhanced issue identification and resolution resulting in greater capacity for front-line policing

Organised Crime

Increased collection of proceeds of crime, additional arrests and convictions (Specific results withheld for operational reasons).

What it’s been like for the Fire & Rescue Service

Better for the people

Rebecca Bryant, Deputy Chief Executive of Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service (in the video below) and Graeme Gerrard, Deputy Chief Constable at Cheshire Constabulary describe how applying the Vanguard Method has been better for their frontline staff and managers.

Graeme Gerrard, Deputy Chief Constable of Cheshire Constabulary: ‘We own our own cases. It gives people pride back in their job.’ Gerrard sums it up this way: ‘We’re well on the way. We know we’re doing the right thing – I don’t think the staff would let us turn back now even if we wanted to.’



The simple application of the steps listed below can lead to a ‘triple whammy’ of improvement: Faster software development whilst spending less and delivery of software with much greater utility.

An ROI of over 3000% is a typical outcome of a Vanguard Method intervention in IT.

Work with IT helpdesks has increased first time fix rates by 63%, with the end to end time taken to resolve a help desk call being reduced by 91%

The Vanguard Method applied in support functions always has a dramatic impact on the delivery of core services delivery. A Vanguard Method intervention in IT improves the service delivered to customers and IT users and dramatically reduces the time and money required to provide the solutions.

The Vanguard Method and Agile development

Research in the 1990s identified the ‘organisational culture’ (Current operational principles) accounted for the failure of 80% of IT projects. IT development has come a long way since the 90s. Agile IT development has an affinity with the principles underpinning the Vanguard Method but still does not have within it the ability to allow those principles to be applied, its success is still subject to the current operational principles being aligned to its method.

In order for Agile development to be focused on solving the right problems and be accepted by the organisation the business must be transformed first.

Health and Care

Results and Testimonials

In Health and Care, Vanguard’s clients have achieved the following astonishing results:

health and care testimonials3
  • Sustained underspend in community care budget – cost avoidance of £1.5m in 2013/14
  • Referrals resulting in statutory funded packages of care reduced to 10.9% – down from 24.1%
  • 28% reduction in residential and nursing care placements
  • 46% reduction in contacts into Social Services
  • Re–referrals reduced by 46% to 10%
  • 30% reduction in assessments
health and care testimonials3
  • Overall reduction of 36% in non elective admissions to hospital in one GP practice
  • 75% of worker’s time now focused on work of direct value to citizens. Pre-intervention 80% of work was waste activity
  • Reduced need or no ongoing need for social care support
  • Prevention of strain / breakdown for carers

Inpatient Services

Steve Allder - smaller image

Cashable Savings:

  • 14% of the whole hospital budget
  • 23% of the neurology budget
  • 17% of externally commissioned care
Inpatient Results

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Outpatient Services

Patients said:

  • “I have never been seen so quickly”
  • “The doctor had time for me”

Staff said:

  • “Consultations feel more personal”
  • “The clinic feels much calmer”
Outpatient Results

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Laboratory Services

  • Significant reduction in the number of routine liver function tests and full blood count tests. Pre-intervention 60% of liver tests were found to be unnecessary.
  • 40% reduction in urine specimens from GP practices across the area resulting in a cost saving to the CCG of £200k
  • 28% year on year reduction in the number of all biochemistry tests in a single GP practice
  • Increased capacity of specialist microbiologists to provide more targeted help to clinicians dealing with complex cases and ability to use tests results earlier to get the treatment right first time
  • Reduction in use of antibiotics and reduction in duration of symptoms and recurrent infections
  • Reduction in anxiety to patients who were able to get back to normal as quickly as possible or to better understand what new normal would look like for them
  • Significant reduction in incidences of iatrogenic harm

Youth Protection

health and care testimonials3
  • Overall savings of 30m euros (£22.9m)
  • Cost saving of 12m euros (£9.1m) within the Youth Protection Amsterdam region and 10m euros (£7.6m) for expensive youth care
  • 50% reduction in the number of families under the care of the organisation from 8,000 (around 20,000 children) to 4,000
  • 61% reduction in protective measures
  • 53% reduction in the number of out-of-home placements
  • 46% reduction in youth parole measures
  • 16% reduction in child custody / wardship
  • 28% reduction in referrals to youth care providers
  • 75% reduction in unnecessary administration


health and care testimonials5
  • 17% demand reduction
  • Recurrent savings projected at upwards of £85m per annum

Children’s Services

  • 92% reduction in time from referral to the provision of service
  • 50% reduction in failure demand
  • Pre-intervention – 80% of worker’s time spent on paperwork and writing reports; post-intervention 80% of workers time spent face to face with the child and their family
  • Better for children – children only need to see one person (rather than 15)

Adult Services

  • The old system took an average of 62 days simply to assess needs. The new system understands people and their needs and provides the right help on average within 49 days
  • More effective assessment – ‘right first time’ increased from 52% to 90%
  • More efficient assessment – 85% reduction in cost of assessment
  • £3m savings by designing out waste work
  • £2.2m saving in residential homes budget

Contact Centres

working woman technology computer

Our Public and Private sector clients’ Contact Centres have been transformed through the application of the Vanguard Method; all have massive improvements in service and efficiency.

It is quite normal for a transformed Contact Centre operating using Vanguard Method principles to be 70-80% more efficient and for first point resolution to be between 85-95%.

Value & Failure Demand

In the early 1990s we made a breakthrough in how to study demand into Contact Centres. In the course of studying customer demand we realised there are only two types – Value demand (the kind of demand we want) and Failure demand (the kind we don’t want).

This simple, yet incredibly powerful, distinction has given Contact Centre managers a fundamentally different insight allowing them to act in ways that reduce failure and therefore liberate resource.

The current paradigm

The industry that has grown up around Contact Centres has failed managers by encouraging them to adopt and manage using numbers that will make performance worse not better and that will lead to ‘Sweat shop’ conditions for their agents.

AHT, Wrap & Speed to answer are the cause of poor performance not the solution.


Whether it’s up a pole or down a hole,
the Vanguard Method works in Telecoms companies.

Clients have:

  • Grown demand for new residential services by 800%
  • Sold 60% more in new business sales
  • Reduced failure demand in repairs from 88% down to 1%
  • Increased their productivity by more than 20%
  • Increased sales of additional services to 50% of existing business customers

Our telecom clients have learned that applying our principles dramatically improves their customers’ experience, their networks’ resilience and their financial performance.

Better for customers

“It helped us get off the ground when we were just starting out. It’s been a first class service, 11 out of 10”

“How you guys worked together, to customize a package, you didn’t chuck me into the one size fits all bracket and you actually know what you’re talking about”

“The one point of contact I can just talk to one person for anything for sales, trouble shooting. I just need one person to look after me and they get a better understanding of me and what I need”

“Without complicated hardware it works. It does what it’s supposed to do”

“You were very, very efficient, felt like I had a whole team looking after me you were quick and you got it all done”

“All aspects were brilliant – understanding was good, turned up when you needed to, and I know you are only a phone call away”

“It’s so amazing and it’s just saved so much time calling you guys”

The Problem

Telecoms companies have designed themselves as ‘Product’ businesses with tariff packages and technology being the only differentiators. Our clients have learned their current designs and confusing product packages have created a systematic ‘churn’ of customers. Their application of the Vanguard Method principles has transformed them into services systems designed to allow customers to ‘pull’ the value they want, how they want it, when they want it.

Within the telecoms sector the Vanguard Method principles have been applied in:

  • Sales
  • Service
  • Network & infrastructure maintenance
  • Network build
Fewer faults on the line
Our purpose
  • 90% of installations are completed on the date and time the customer picks
  • Incomplete or incorrect business orders reduced by 25% to less than 10%
  • 97% of installations completed in one visit

Better for staff

Perceptions from the front line
“We’ve taken over Droitwich”
A better relationship between engineers and managers

Better for the organisation:

  • 70% reduction of people needed to fulfil the business customers’ orders
  • 90% reduction of calls from engineers needing assistance whilst on site

Malcolm Newing, Director of Field Transformation, describes how applying the Vanguard Method to this operation helped him to understand and improve his system.

What we learned about our MI
Improved efficiency
Improved throughput