“I set up the programme and co-ordinated partners for Asda’s Financial Services entry”
To set up a programme management framework in order to successfully launch a financial services business to Asda customers.
Asda is a major grocery and non-food retailer with £10+ billion turnover and several hundred stores across the UK. It sells a wide range of products and services across multiple delivery channels – stores, telephone, internet and interactive TV.
Asda had embarked on the launch of a financial services business in the 1990s, a major strategic project led at the time by Iain Spence, then employed by Asda. The venture was shelved prior to launch in order to focus on the core retail business.
However, the appetite to re-enter the financial services market returned in 2002, and Iain Spence was retained as an external consultant to assist the project team in launching the business.
In order to achieve an appropriate balance of commercial risk and reward, the Asda strategy for its financial services business was to re-brand financial products managed by existing well known financial providers.
It was therefore essential that all organisations involved in the development of this new business, worked to an agreed plan in order that the products, organisation and marketing programme were implemented in a consistent and co-ordinated manner.
We therefore implemented a formalised yet pragmatic programme management methodology across all organisations involved, comprising:
- Formal communication processes
- A comprehensive programme plan, with updating processes
- Regular status updates
- Risk and issue management logging and resolution management
As a result of the rigorous approach to managing this business launch, Asda’s financial services business launched on time during 2003 and is now trading well.