Human Centred Design Case Study

Ending operational silos through new ways of working at an international bank

The Challenge

Our client, an international bank, had embarked on a transformation with the aim to respond more quickly to rapidly evolving customer needs;​ enhance business value; increase productivity; ​and improve employee engagement​. A key initiative within the transformation was the introduction of agile ways of working yet the bank faced two key challenges: limited information sharing and resistance to change.

Information-sharing between teams was limited as, even within a division, many teams preferred to work in location-based silos. This was exacerbated by a high-level of turnover among within teams.

Working in a high-pressure environment with ongoing turnover of staff, the remaining staff felt they didn’t have time to change. Teams were resistant to agile having previously worked with a multiplicity of agile coaches with no consistent view.


With the client, ADAPTOVATE developed a change program to improve information-sharing and the use of validated information in decision making.  We gained and maintained trust with senior execs through regular feedback sessions on progress made.

ADAPTOVATE directly helped the teams deliver through one-on-one coaching and just-in-time coaching. Together we rethought the flow of work and challenged the status quo using​ Human Centred Design techniques. We introduced a focus on issues from a customer perspective​ and created cross-functional teams to increase sharing of information.

Finally, ADAPTOVATE set up a group to embed new ways of working within the teams and disseminate best practice. Train-the-trainer sessions helped scale knowledge of agile across the organisation.


ADAPTOVATE produced a new operating model that engaged with the flow of information based on data. This new operating model was tested to ensure it worked in a new faster-paced agile environment.

Through the initiative, ADAPTOVATE were able gain trust and create a shift in mindset, both overcoming the established resistance to agile and establishing a new way of working. This led to the breaking down of the location-based silos, fostering a collaborative and transparent environment between functions and locations.


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