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case studies

RCN Nursing

The Royal College of Nursing is the largest professional union for nursing in the UK, representing over 380,000 nurses, health care assistants and nursing students, both in the NHS and the private sector.

Business Situation:

RCN Nursing is responsible for the professional side of the Royal College of Nursing (RCN.)

Following Lighthouse Business Consultants success in improving processes within the Trade Union arm of the RCN, they were invited by the project manager of RCN Nursing to help map, describe and improve several key processes; in particular how 41 individual professional competency-based nursing forums access funding from the RCN, in order to further their specialism.  This was a particularly complex situation due to the governance structure.

 Historically the forums had been self-governed but after intervention of the Charity Commission they needed to rationalise from 78 to 41 forums, and to bring their management, especially their financial management, in house to RCN Nursing.

 The Nursing department had no extra money to fund this, so needed to find it from savings within the department.

 The situation was further complicated by the fact that some forum work is done under the charitable arm of the organisation, some under income generation and some is driven politically.

Business Solution:

Lighthouse Business Consultants Ltd mapped the current process, identifying issues and potential areas of conflict.  

We developed a new way of working, restructured the department, designed and improved a series of new operational procedures and implemented an improved series of management controls to track forum performance.

Finally a bespoke software solution has been developed to allow the management of forums, especially communication and bid production to happen virtually.


The new requirement for in-house management of the forums was met with no increase in budget.

 In addition, a new system for monitoring the forum performance was instigated; and the Charity Commission requirements clarified by forum.

Categories: case studies, consultancy, lean, private sector, reduce costs

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