CS4: Roles & Responsibilities – Architects

Case Study: Roles & Responsibilities

Image courtesy of ddpavumba / FreeDigitalPhotos.netPutting people in the right place


The company had a small Finance Team of 6 people with a variety of experience, qualifications, working hours & career expectations. As with any growing team it had evolved in response to the growing workload and any vacated roles had always been replaced on a like-for-like basis.

While the team was getting through the monthly accounts activity, the Directors were meeting with friction at requests for new information & found the team difficult to communicate with. A team member had also recently left & they were about to embark on a recruitment process for this person.

Spending time with the team and understanding their personal and team frustrations I found:

  • Unused skills – Staff had skills that their specific role didn’t need & they felt were wasted
  • No leadership – The team was managed by a senior team member who was uncomfortable in this role and as such was not communicating well with the team or the Directors
  • Recruitment – There were team frustrations at recruitment rather than internal promotions
  • Fear – Growth, changes in technology & new Directors requirements were putting demands on the team that concerned them so they were resisting


  • Looked at the INPUTS to the team – what information they were receiving, from whom, by when, and what quality it was
  • Looked at the OUTPUTS of the team – who required information from them, by when & what format they needed it in
  • Looked at the PROCESSES – what needed to be done, what shared information was there & how could this best flow through the department
  • Looked at TEAM MEMBERS – what skills & aspirations they had & what they enjoyed doing
  • Looked at the Management capabilities in the team
  • Looked at the Tools that were being used and the Systems that were in place
  • Set up improved systems & procedures, encouraged better communications & wrote new Roles and Responsibilities that suited the business needs better


  • The team worked much better with stronger leadership
  • People were motivated by their newly defined and better suited roles
  • Internal monthly meetings gave clear objectives & the team felt more focused & supported
  • The new Manager worked to improve the external perception of the team
  • Closer links with other departments gave improved understanding of the business needs
  • Work flowed more easily as bottle-necks had been eased with new systems
  • A new person was no longer needed so there were cost-savings too

To put it even more simply, put the right people in the right place & things work better.

“Paula is a very thoughtful, logical, perceptive and friendly person. She always has an open mind on bringing new and more effective ways of doing things into her day-to-day activities. She is very focused on getting the right results for the right people.” Director