Bourton helps Sellafield with Lean Six Sigma roll-out

20 February 2015

Nuclear decommissioning expert Sellafield has awarded a four year framework contract to performance improvement specialist Bourton Group. Under the new contract – terms and conditions have not been disclosed – the operational consultancy will support Sellafield with deploying and embedding Lean Six Sigma methodologies.

Sellafield, founded in 2005, is responsible for safely delivering decommissioning and reprocessing of nuclear waste management. The 13,000 man strong company is also involved in power operations, fuel production and reprocessing, international decommissioning, and international transportation. Sellafield is owned by Nuclear Management Partners (NMP)* and operates under the mandate of the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA), a non-departmental public body that owns 19 sites across the UK.

As part of its operations for the NDA, Sellafield yearly runs several major programmes and projects, in addition to managing business as usual operations. As for any organisation, efficiency is a key strategic priority, and in line with the objective Sellafield a while ago launched a company-wide initiative to deploy Lean Sigma – a management technique geared at maximising process efficiency – throughout the organisation. To support the roll-out of the transformation programme, Sellafield brought in the expertise of a number of external experts, including Bourton Group, a mid-sized management consultancy based just outside Birmingham that specialises in operations management.

Bourton helps Sellafield with Lean Six Sigma roll-out

Bourton first began working with Sellafield in 2010 and since then have supported a wide range of projects, according to Bourton Managing Director Mike Notman delivering “over £5 million of efficiencies”. The advisors have in addition to project management supported Sellafield with Six Sigma Belts certifications at all levels of expertise, across a wide range of Operating and Support units. Based on the track record, and bottom-line contribution, Sellafield has recently decided to award Bourton a further four year framework contract to support its ongoing development and deployment of Lean Six Sigma and other continuous improvement methodologies.

“We’re delighted to have been selected for another four year period to support Sellafield to continuously improve its operations. This is as a direct result of the great work that we have been doing in this arena and the wider infrastructure sector”, comments Notman. Hank de Groot from Sellafield adds: “For the last few years Bourton have been helping us to apply business improvement methods across the site.  The results have been terrific and we are very pleased that they will be our partner for the next phase of our deployment of Lean Sigma.”

* A consortium of US company URS, British company AMEC, and Areva of France.