Case Study 6 - Road Traffic Signal Systems


Customer / Product resume: AWS Customer had acquired a traffic systems company and they wanted to close one of its facilities on the South Coast. The site had engineering, R&D and repairs. The repair facility was for traffic management systems and the customer wanted to outsource this work. 3 engineers currently doing this repair work did not want to transfer.

AWS Involvement: Following the success of outsourcing project in the midlands, the AWS Customer wanted AWS to transfer Traffic Systems repairs. The subsequent bid and contract were agreed. Unlike the previous transfer the engineers did not want to move so knowledge transfer was the main issue to be managed. They had three main objectives:

  • Transfer all work to AWS
  • Improve repair performance – Turnaround times, Availability & cost
  • No one internally who could manage - they requested AWS to lead the project management

Immediate problems:

  • Knowledge transfer – perceived as a ‘black art’ of the specific product
  • Lack of meaningful data on repair times, turnaround time and true cost
  • Drawings, BOM’s and Datapacks not up to date
  • 140 different product types (with only 20% runners) so long learning curve

Solutions provided by AWS:

  • AWS provided the project management and leadership
  • Repair process flows developed
  • Repair process defined and agreed – including standard repair scenarios
  • Repairs fully costed – times all measured and variation understood
  • Agreed performance measures- turnaround time
  • New data packs, diagnostics and fault trees developed
  • Work transfer/training 3 months
  • 6 months ‘hot line’ support from the customers engineering team


  • Labour Cost Saving (£100k annualised) - 3 direct heads, Value of annual savings of £100k
  • Improved Performance - Turnaround times – average from 8 weeks to 4 weeks (50%), Monthly reporting introduced on quality, cost and delivery (formal review)
  • Space and other savings - Site released for closure/sale. Indirect savings: Stores, Logistics, Transactions (PO’s)
  • Customer satisfaction - Improved performance noted by customer


Case Study 1 - Design for Manufacture and Test (DfM/DfT)  |   Case Study 2 - Value Engineering (VA/VE)  |   Case Study 3 - Cost Reduction (Re-engineering)  |   Case Study 4 - Outsource of MRO (Complex Satellite System)  |   Case Study 5 - Road and Rail Repair Transfer (TUPE)  |   Case Study 6 - The Benefits of Outsourcing Repair Operations