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Small KTPs sound good to Echo

From left to right: Dr Michael Butler, Karen Caine and Mark Alfer

ABS is currently working on a Small Knowledge Transfer Partnership (sKTP) with Echo Managed Services; looking at two change programmes and the 'people aspects' of the company's change management.

Aston MBA Alumni Karen Caine as the Associate, and Dr Michael Butler (ABS), will be working with Mark Alfer, Echo's Programme Manager, to ensure the long-term success and sustainability of the process changes being implemented under the two change programmes.

Company Programme Manager Mark Alfer explains: 'The sKTP provides Echo with a resource that is on-site and this gives us the flexibility that we need to align the sKTP objectives with our business as usual activities. Karen - as the Associate - has many years of experience in a service provision environment. This, coupled with access to the knowledge bank at Aston - containing established and new innovative ways of thinking - allows us to deliver the solution we require.'

The sKTP is allowing Karen to diagnose and solve organisational issues, relating to the people and cultural aspects of change, in order to deliver real and sustained change, whilst being involved in the translation of leading-edge theory into useful, pragmatic business techniques. 'This kind of valuable experience is just so easily transferable that it surely has to help when seeking further work at the end of the partnership,' she commented.

Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTP) is a UK-wide programme enabling businesses to improve competitiveness, productivity and performance. This is achieved through the forming of a partnership between businesses and academic institutions (such as universities, further education colleges or research and technology organisations), enabling businesses to access skills and expertise to help them develop.

The knowledge sought is embedded into the business from the knowledge base through a project, or projects, undertaken by a recently qualified person (known as the Associate), recruited to specifically work on that project.

KTPs can vary in length from one to three years (classic KTP) and from 10-40 weeks (shorter KTP), depending on the needs of the business and the desired outcomes. KTP enables new capability to be embedded into the business and has benefited and continues to benefit a wide range of businesses across many sectors: including micro-sized, small and large businesses, third sector organisations or public.

Business performance outputs vary considerably from case to case, given the variety and type of projects. Latest information shows that, on average, the business benefits that can be expected from a single KTP project (typical duration 1-3 years) include: an increase of over £220,000 in annual profits before tax, the creation of three genuine new jobs, and an increase in skills of existing staff.

Find out more about how you can get involved in the Knowledge Transfer Partnership scheme, please contact Martin May on ext 4253. 

www.aston.ac.uk/bpu

Words by Paul Burkwood

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