Business change to support a new flood forecasting system

December 2020

Secondment support for an IT and business change programme the results of which underpins England’s forecasting capabilities for the next decade.

The Challenge

A leading government organisation in England has a statutory duty to provide a flood forecasting service to enable them to prepare and warn of potential flooding. Their service is split across seven forecasting centres each with different forecasting systems and ways of working. The challenge was to work as part of a multi-disciplinary team to replace their existing forecasting systems with a single consistent system used by all and reduce the inconsistencies in ways of working to enable that goal.

Key Facts

  • 3 year secondments into the multi-disciplinary team
  • Delivery of a programme of work to drive consistency across the service and improve forecasting capability
  • Programme and project management expertise provided to guide the journey
  • A wide reaching business change aspect ensuring a smooth transition to the new forecasting system and ways of working.
  • Training delivery during the impacts of Covid-19

The Solution

RAB offered a wide range of flood forecasting service development knowledge and project management experience. Through close work with the development team, users and the wider client project team we were able to provide a range of business change, training and transition planning services. Examples of our workstreams include;

Programme management for a programme exceeding 30 separate workstreams with the common goal of increasing capability and consistency. This was to be linked with the wider system development project which would enable many of these benefits.

Business change planning and documentation preparation to ensure the forecasting system project met the requirements of ‘OGC Gateway Review 4’: Readiness for Service, examples include developing a transition plan, a skills and resource paper and developing operational guidance for the system.

A key requirement was to lead training delivery to forecasting duty officers based in forecasting centres. This was delivered during Covid-19 forcing the team to adapt and deliver remotely over a month long intensive period prior to launch.

Further work streams included planning and working with the forecasting centres to deliver change to ways of working to ensure a smooth transition to using the new system operationally.


The project brought together expertise from a range of consultants within the UK and internationally to support the already well-formed knowledge. The multi-disciplinary team has achieved a great deal over the project duration. Our team received the following feedback from the client:

“A project with a difficult start and a significant change in scope all managed brilliantly by RAB. RAB project inputs were always on time, of a very high quality and delivered in the spirit of a ‘team effort’ Not only were outputs as required but also brilliant to have the team able to shape ideas, make suggestions, improvements and innovations to make the outputs much better.”