CASE STUDY

U.S. Department of Transportation Policy and Procedure Reviews + Performance Assessment and Training​

October 2016 – June 2017 

BACKGROUND

In preparation for the new White House administration, SCB was engaged as a subcontractor to assist senior Department of Transportation (DOT) Administration leaders assess internal operations and identify opportunities for improvement.  As a project manager, SCB evaluated current policies and procedures to improve the ability to build strategic partnerships across the Department that support the agency’s mission. SCB was ultimately engaged to manage three (3) concurrent projects: 

1. Policy and Procedure Review – Human Resources Operations 

2. Policy and Procedure Review – Physical Security Operations 

3. Transition Support Services – Performance Assessment and Training 

1. POLICY AND PROCEDURE REVIEW - HUMAN RESOURCES OPERATIONS

DOT’s objective for this project was to support improving operational efficiency by conducting an analysis of operations, conducting benchmarking research, and creating an action plan with implementable actions and metrics for the agency’s human resources operations and outcomes. 

APPROACH

SCB began with the interviews with senior human resources administration officials to identify challengesopportunities for improvement, and collaborate with key stakeholders to establish key priorities for the project. The following tasks were completed: 

  • Reviewed client data (e.g., customer survey) to identify specific pain points 
  • Identified and prioritized key human resources processes 
  • Facilitated business processing mapping sessions with subject matter experts 
  • Draft new business processes and validated with end user focus groups 
  • Developed user-friendly job aids to support consistency, accuracy, and compliance 
  • Documented all high priority Human Resources processes.  
  • Facilitated multi-level validation sessions with human resources department end users and key business partners from other DOT modes 

 

As Project Manager, SCB developed and continually monitored the budget, schedule, resources, quality, and client expectations. Additionally, SCB met bi-weekly with senior leaders to provide a status of results against the scope of work plan. 

RESULTS

SCB finalized and published the Human Resources SOP manual and job aids–on time, and within budget including: Recruiting, Hiring and Onboarding, Pay Setting, Performance Awards, and Performance Management. The final results facilitated DOTs compliance with the new administration’s Performance Management requirements.  

2. POLICY AND PROCEDURE REVIEW - PHYSICAL SECURITY OPERATIONS

DOT’s objective for this project was to support improving operational efficiency by conducting an analysis of operations, conducting benchmarking research and creating an action plan with implementable actions and metrics.  The agency’s physical security operations assessment included all DOT Washington, D.C. offices, benchmarking of processes against other similar federal agency offices, assessing compliance with federal government regulations and policies for security operations, and providing recommendations to improve the customer experience for their more than 80,000 annual visitors.  

APPROACH

As the Project Manager, SCB’s approach to assessing the DOT physical security operations and providing recommendations to the DOT included: 

Assessed and Analyzed Current State Operations 

  • Reviewed existing policies and procedures 
  • Facilitate focus groups with senior DOT Administration officials across DOT to identify opportunities for service delivery improvement 
  • Interviewed the security team from staff to senior leaders 
  • Reviewed customer survey feedback 
  • Provided an Initial Findings Report  

 

Conducted Benchmarking and Identified Best Practices 

  • Defined a peer group, developed an initial survey, and conducted on-site assessment at each peer group location 
  • Researched and analyzed physical security policies and regulations as mandated by U.S. Homeland Security and GSA compliance requirements 

RESULTS

Presented Findings and Recommendations Report to functional and senior leaders 

  • Assessment of Governance, Strategy, People, Process, Technology 
  • Assessment of Key Drivers impacting DOT Physical Security Operations (e.g., increasing threats, budget, strategic partnerships, technology, new administration, regulations) 
  • Benchmarking Results 
  • Security Team Recommendations—roles, responsibilities and training program 
  • Technology Recommendations–for state-of-the-art equipment upgrades 
  • Process Recommendations including schematic diagrams to improve the entrance flow efficiency and effectiveness from registration to screening at each location, website instructions for visitors, signage, large event, garage and crisis management processes 

3. TRANSITION SUPPORT SERVICES - PERFORMANCE ASSESSMENT AND TRAINING

DOT’s objective for this project was for SCB to provide options for improving efficiency, including productivity tools, project management training, employee engagement, and leadership and oversight.    

APPROACH

SCB was subcontracted to help the Department of Transportation in their effort to provide their employees with Organization-Wide Professional Development Training. In an effort to do so, SCB took the following approach: 

Assessment 

  • Identified DOT’s Strategic Objectives 
  • Facilitated Leadership Focus Groups with each of the administration departments (human resources, acquisition-purchasing, facilities, finance, personnel security and physical security) to discuss respective:  
    • customer satisfaction survey results and identify opportunities for improvement
    • diversity & inclusion opportunities
    • employee engagement opportunities 
  • Presented recommendations for global improvement opportunities to DOT senior leadership 
  •  Presented implementation plan to departmental leadership, following acceptance of recommendations 

 

Implementation 

  • Developed tailored content, interactive curriculum, and training plan to deliver mandatory professional development courses to 450 headquarters staff, supervisors and managers, to train on best practices and address performance gaps including:  
    • Project Management—The DOT Approach to Managing Projects 
    • Employee Engagement—Creating a Culture of Engagement 
    • Business Communications—Communicating with Clarity 
    • Customer Service Skills—The DOT Way 
    • Strategic Partnerships 
    • Change Management
    • Coordinated the development and delivery of a Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) Best Practices Toolkit for Managers tailored to address client-specific needs 
    • Implemented sustainable solution for leadership to continually monitor performance  

RESULTS

SCB successfully coordinated more than 20 training sessions to ensure that 450 employees received each of the required training for their respective role as staff, manager or supervisor.  An average of 90% of participants strongly agreed or agreed that the sessions were valuable, information was presented well, facilitators were effective, and the sessions were overall effective. The D&I Toolkit, equipped with best practices and exercises, was rolled out to all of the DOT supervisors and managers.