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An overview of BS11000 Stage 8 : Exit Strategy

BS11000, the British Standard for Collaborative Business Relationships is the first of its type in the world to formalise how organisations approach mutual relationships and this Blog (8/8) is the final part of a series where we look at each individual stage of the Standard in a little more depth.

BS11000 Stage 8 : Exit Strategy

I can feel a little tear coming to my eye. You have invested significant time and effort into the relationship to get to this point but Stage 8 is a very mature approach to concluding it and should not be confused with a contractual arrangement.

You will have quite some time back, drafted an initial Exit Strategy which then was developed further up to a point of Stage 8 where it needs to be nailed down and then ultimately implemented. It is hoped that by clearly spelling out the terms of disengagement at an early stage that this will have supported an environment of openness and trust which in turn, will hopefully encouraged joint innovation and knowledge share. Much of Stage 8 addresses how the benefits derived during the relationship can be used for mutual gain going forward. For example, innovation that may provide a commercial advantage must be considered should the parties find themselves in competition against each other at a later stage.

It is important the parameters surrounding all of the value created, whether intellectual or process are considered and that the disengagement treats all parties with mutual respect.

8-Exit-Strategy-300x300The Joint Exit Strategy needs to be finalised by the Joint management Team and must openly address all of the concerns of parties and stakeholders to provide an on-going relationship beyond its conclusion.

The Exit Strategy should be reviewed regularly and when appropriate, be modified to accommodate changes in innovation, knowledge and performance but equally, to cater for external changes in the operating market place.

It needs to assess whether the final  joint objectives have been achieved and address any areas of potential conflict going forward, considering possible impact to internal and external stake holders. Remember, it is feasible that separately each organisation may be pitching similar offerings to the same client and principles agreed on how each organisation will trade going forward post-relationship.

It would be sensible that there is a clear and positive joint message ahead of the planned disengagement to head off any unwanted speculation and to provide clarity to the market place.

Obviously as the relationship reaches its conclusion, there will be changes that affect how each organisation and its staff operate individually and a transition process needs consideration to ensure that business continuity is not impacted. Personally, I also believe that this is a good time to agree that each organisation has an embargo on recruiting from its partner to avoid further impact.

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Collaborative working and BS11000

Tim Fitch

Tim Fitch has extensive civil engineering leadership experience, gained particularly in the geotechnical and rail sectors, where he has helped niche businesses become market leaders, and quadrupled turnover in Taylor Woodrow’s rail division.

With a strong background in business development, Tim spearheaded growth at Vinci’s civil engineering division, deploying customer relationship and pipeline management techniques to grow the company’s work in the transport and energy sectors.

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