Plant accounting systems
Introducing design thinking to a global manufacturer
This project worked with an American chemical company with manufacturing plants across the globe. Their Finance Operations team faces challenges related to its plan accounting processes. These technical and human challenges create churn and frustration with wasted time. This is especially true for closing the cockpit in Material Ledger (ML)—the focus of the day-long workshop facilitated by Designit. This workshop was structured to help the company arrive at a clearer vision for the future of closing the cockpit in ML and better understand the challenges of today.
Along with a co-facilitator, I conducted two internal working sessions with plant accounting SMEs to understand the current journey for a sub-process within plant accounting—closing the cockpit in ML. During these workshops, we also envisioned how the accounting process could be improved in a standardized state (3 months in the future), and a transformed state (3 years in the future).
At a workshop facilitated in-person, the Client's Chief Accounting Officer and her team met to further discuss these journeys, their pain points, and the feasibility of the suggested process changes.
Following the workshop, the client expressed interest in continuing the exploration of plant accounting processes using design thinking. A proposal for a new scope of work that analyses other accounting processes is being developed.
Discovery & Co-Creation
Working sessions with SMEs
Using Miro to collaborate virtually with SMEs allowed for alignment on current plant accounting processes and informed the visualization of these processes. Through workshop activities I co-facilitated, the team was able to create two proposed future states.
Above: Screenshots from Miro working sessions
After co-creating the journey maps as a team, I acted as the lead visual designer to prepare the information visually. Using Illustrator, I created large-scale visualizations of the journeys for use during the in-person workshop with the client's senior leadership.
Designing the journey maps
Above: Images of final journey maps presented to client
Presenting insights and co-creating with senior leaders
During the workshop, I led participants in writing ways Finance Operations embodies their
company's values. Through this activity, we aligned on Finance Operation’s commitment to creating efficient and simple processes.
We then introduced the journey maps and invited the clients to add sticky notes and writing to each of the maps to ask questions, align on pain points, and discuss the feasibility of the proposed future states.
Above: Photo of workshop space with sticky notes and writing added to journey maps
Right: Clients interacting with journey maps during workshop