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Knowledge Bank Workplace Innovation

Best practices and other information about Workplace Innovation and Smart Working

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  • Author: TNO; Beeuwkes, Jos;
  • Publication date: 14 June 2017
  • Date added: 14 June 2017

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Rating: Finext; working is selfmanaging teams

Finext; working is selfmanaging teams

2016 - Finext is a network organisation of over 150 consultants who provide services to companies and institutions having knowledge of industries, themes and technologies.

In 1999, Finext was created within The Vision Web (IT company) and then incorporated by Ordina (also IT). 70 employees have bought Finext out of Ordina because this group had developed mainly in financial consultancy, more than in IT.

Finext has received our attention from the beginning of this Knowledge Bank in 2006, see the references below. In 2016, Jos Beeuwkes made a new case study about this company. Below is a summary of that casestudy. The entire case study (in Dutch) is attached. 

Workplace innovation

Finext is now owned by a large number of its own employees. A new Finext employee may choose to become a shareholder or being employed by Finext. The staff work in separate niches (private companies, BV's) in self-managing teams. The teams themselves decide on the whole process from product development and sales to administration, and they execute the decisions and evaluate the results themselves. They are responsible for budget and sales and they manage the salary-, training- and other costs. The BV's pay 25% of their turnover (or a minimum amount of money) to Finext.

The teams themselves recruit new people, determine all team members’ salaries and give mutual advise on (professional) development. All information is transparent, from personal calendars to salaries. Each team has a team coordinator (a role that roulates)  who presides over the team meetings, meets with coordinators of other teams and promotes knowledge sharing between teams. The teams can support each other in (financial) problems.

Employee ideas are discussed in the team and if accorded, elaborated within that team. If  an idea is relevant for Finext as a whole, it is introduced into a "qwinc network" and if it is promising it will be developed by a project team. 

Driver
Finext started with self-managing teams quite soon after its creation. The consultants practiced what they advise their clients: make the organization flat, simplify work processes and reduce bureaucracy in order to work more efficiently. 

Approach
Soon after its creation Finext staff observed its organisational structure and business processes critically. Per expertise, industry and theme, the work has been analyzed and then eight niches on themes were formed. These niches are now separate private companies (the BV’s)  that together form the holding Finext. Within these private companies self-managing teams of 6 to 12 people (at the max.) operate. 

Results
Finext's financial results are significantly higher than the benchmark. Team responsibility for the results provoces the team's ever-increasing ambition. The absenteeism rate is low by 1.3%. The employees feel a lot more fun and challenge in the work than employees at more hierarchical organisations and are triggered to get the best out of themselves. 

Lessons learned

The teams can improve in giving feedback and may learn from each other in that respect.  

Reference

  • Beeuwkes, Jos. ‘Finext. Casestudy’, (2017) (executed in an internship at TNO). See attachment.

    Attached as well:

  • Bianca Stokman: ‘Who wears the tie today, (2009?)De Baak magazine, p.21.