A great many different people, departments and parties are needed to maintain and develop our railways.
Railway network operator ProRail‘s departments of Operational Management and Underground Infrastructure asked us to help create a clear overview. They want to make their activities, environments and interests clear for all employees of the organization. Because sometimes the teams get involved too late, and that causes delays.
Departments on the map
To avoid surprises, they want to make clear to all internal and external stakeholders what the importance and activities of their fields are in an unambiguous story. What are their day-to-day activities? What are they involved in exactly? Which interests and stakeholders are essential to be aware of?
The target? To be able to take an integral look at all parts of a new project in advance. Together we clearly mapped the departments.
In several co-creation sessions with ProRail employees we developed two visuals. These create an overview, so it is important to be complete, to have a clear structure and to tell a unambiguous story. Flatland always creates visualisations together with the customer, because those are the people who propagate the story and must have a clear and shared image. We design and facilitate processes in which an organization works together on strategy, change or innovation, and drawing is our powerful tool.
But we don’t just create a pretty picture: the Design Thinking method requires you to take a step back first and map out for whom and why you actually want to design something. We work in several sessions, including these:
Clarity > unraveling and clarifying the goal, target group and components
Story > building and structuring a story
Validate> checking whether the visuals are complete, correct and logical
Co-creation creates ownership
With our iterative approach we improve the visuals step by step. And by sketching directly together with customers, a shared image is created and people become enthusiastic and involved in the story. We involve different people in every step, who all bring different perspectives and enrich the content. In this way, we also ensure that more people become involved and enthusiastic: the entire team becomes owner of the visual and the story.
Although we previously hosted our whiteboard sessions in the office, all meetings with ProRail were fully online. And that works! Because all employees participated from behind their own computer, they sat closer to the sketches than normal. That way they could see it even better and respond immediately.
Where we used to let people participate by using post-it’s or dot-voting, for example, online this is just as easy. Flatland’s Tom van ‘t Westeinde works with co-creation programs such as Mural. With this tool anyone can paste digital post-it’s and comment on each other by sliding, adding smilies or writing. This gives everyone a say in the session and gives a quick result.
We visualized and clarified what activities and interests are important for the work environments. The visuals take people along and connect all assets and complexity with their daily work practice.
The visuals provide guidance for all involved and help to tell a clear story. ProRail is enthusiastic: “With these visuals we bring all colleagues and new managers up-to-speed super-fast!”
Are you also working on improving processes and communication?
With visualisations you can clarify complex subjects and get people involved! Want to know more?Email Tom
Other Flatland Cases
C-ARM - Clarifying change processes
With visual storytelling you tell a story. To explain and clarify a new program and get everyone involved!
MBO Zadkine Startcollege - Strategy development
How can we develop a shared strategy for the upcoming years? We facilitated a large group of management and teachers to form a vision and decide on strategic themes.
Alzheimer Netherlands - Regional aid strategy
How do you ensure that all local and regional departments participate in decision-making on multi-year plans? With the help of visualization!