Growth Platform is Liverpool City Region’s growth company, designed to support people and businesses to realise their potential and generate growth. Through their High Growth Programme, they offer a range of business support services for high growth SMEs and SMEs estimated to have high growth potential across the Liverpool City Region.
To enhance the support provided, Winning Moves was commissioned to develop a diagnostic resource to enable a robust understanding of individual SMEs, including all key elements of business activity, and the ability to identify businesses with high growth potential. This included pinpointing a business’s weaknesses and opportunities for development, their drive and ambition, as well as their preparedness for dynamic growth.
Specific requirements included developing an online business self-assessment which looked across the core areas of the business and assessed how decisions are reached. All businesses participating in the growth support programme were required to complete the assessment to identify broad alignment around key issues, strengths, and weaknesses, and highlighting areas that needed to be improved that are critical for change.
Winning Moves worked closely with the Growth Platform (GP) team to design and develop a diagnostic solution that would add value and facilitate engagements, as well as create brokerage opportunities to support provision beyond the immediate programme.
As a result, we customised two assessment tools to meet the specific GP requirements. This included enhancing an innovative tool that provides a fresh, insightful business segmentation methodology which allows a business’s high growth potential to be captured on first contact, early in the customer journey (through triage teams and online interventions).
The other tool represented a refinement of our Business Model Diagnostic which generates a broad view of business practices that lead to high performance levels. This was enhanced to include the following core areas:
- Value Proposition
- Products & Services
- Environmental Sustainability
We incorporated functionality to assist with evaluation, impact analysis and intelligence gathering. The platform and associated dashboards are designed to gather and present information demonstrating both business and programme level impact.
A key element of our proposal was to utilise our BenchmarkIndex® core platform to house the diagnostic tools. Proven to be flexible, robust, reliable and highly secure, the Index has underpinned countless initiatives to improve business performance, leading to increased growth, productivity, resilience and profitability.
Whilst the needs of the High Growth Programme were fundamental, we were also asked to create a resource that could act as a legacy for future support initiatives. Consequently, we have produced a flexible platform that enables the introduction of new functionality and additional assessment tools over time.
The core requirements have all been successfully delivered, serving the needs of all system users including SMEs, advisers and administrators. The diagnostics, which are adding value throughout all stages of the customer journey, are quick to complete (usually 15 minutes or less), easy and intuitive to use, and able to cater for all SME sectors and sizes.
Results delivered include the:
- Upfront creation of two assessment tools
- Capability for SMEs to engage directly with the diagnostic online and develop reports themselves
- Provision of professional, easy to understand, visually attractive individualised reports that are produced instantly
- Comparison of performance and practices against other local businesses that have been assessed
- Intelligent signposting to support, funding and local support and skills resources
- Action planning and brokerage functionality integrated into the solution
- Production of data dashboards, offering a graphical overview of the most important findings arising from the data collected by users of the diagnostic
- Administration tools to manage content, users, data and quality.
Well over 100 SMEs have been diagnosed and the platform is playing a growing role in a number of central GP activities, including:
- Marketing and lead generation
- Segmentation with a focus on businesses with high growth potential
- Business model diagnostic used to deconstruct business models with a view to reengineering to be more scalable
- Action planning and brokerage built into the diagnostic, providing a professional integrated service
- Data and intelligence gathering which will enable the impact assessment and evaluation.
Winning Moves is actively maintaining and protecting the platform from malicious attacks, ensuring no loss of uptime. Looking to the future, we will continue to retain a flexible approach to further develop the platform and its tools in line with the evolving requirements of GP.