Cleaning up the Competition: Wayne Cleaning Systems Awarded First Place in Day 3 of the COSBOA Innovation Games (Victoria) 2018

November 29, 2018
By Kim Fernandes

Paddl Co. in partnership with COSBOA (Council of Small Business Organisations of Australia) and the Victorian State Government, have developed a series of Innovation Games designed to bring together small businesses, major Australian companies and emerging young talent. The COSBOA Innovation Games (Victoria) 2018 have been designed to shake up how businesses view talent - by creating a platform where problem solving takes an innovative approach. The event runs over the course of one day, and encourages participants to think analytically and from a variety of perspectives.

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Sponsored by Canon, the third Innovation Games (in a series of five), centred around the theme, staying ahead of the curve: accelerating your business to thrive in the digital world’. Day 3 of the COSBOA Innovation Games (Victoria) 2018 was held on October 11th at the Melbourne Investment Centre. Students applied through paddljobs.com, Paddl Co. competitively select the best emerging talent and place them into diverse teams to tackle real business problems. As one of the 10 participating businesses on the day, Wayne Cleaning Systems (WCS) and their team ‘Partners in Grime’ earned first place with their innovative idea- their journey is featured below.

Who is Wayne Cleaning Systems?

Founded in 1982, Wayne Cleaning Systems (WCS) provide a variety of cleaning services across government and corporate facilities, commercial and industrial buildings, the educational sector as well as various waste management services. Having grown to operate across three states, WCS pride themselves on their quality of service and their fair compensation of workers. In a highly competitive market, Wayne Cleaning Systems were finding it hard to solidify their business edge.

So What did the Day Involve?

The Innovation Games connect small businesses to larger businesses and emerging talent who can help them think differently. Paddl Co. execute design thinking principles (click link for a deeper explanation) over the course of the challenge day, encouraging out-of-the-box thinking and creative problem solving.

  The design thinking process in action

The design thinking process in action

The experience for WCS began prior to game day, having met their team ‘virtually’ and completing their first assignment - agreeing upon a team name. ‘Partners in Grime’ was formed, so now the serious thinking can effectively begin!

The day itself is broken into three design sprints; problem definition and ideation, concept design and development, and storytelling and concept pitch.

  All hands on deck for Wayne Cleaning Systems during Sprint 1

All hands on deck for Wayne Cleaning Systems during Sprint 1

Enter: ‘Partners in Grime’

Sprint one focuses on what the core issues are for the business, and how they could potentially address these pains. This is integral for WCS- they need the teams to fully understand the background behind the way they actually operate. WCS were constantly being outbid for tenders by companies offering lower prices, often at the expense of the quality of service and the fair treatment of the workers hired. Clients’ lack of exposure to these back-end practices in the industry was a pain point for WCS. By this stage, Paddlrs’ minds were buzzing at the WCS table. They defined Wayne Cleaning Systems’ problem as:

‘How can we help Wayne Cleaning Systems to improve their chance of winning tenders by streamlining their processes?

The Solution for Wayne Cleaning Systems

The Partners in Grime team were able to construct a solution based around the integration of technology into the business, which cycled back to the core theme of the day - ‘digital solutions to stay ahead of the curve.’ Their proposed solution was to:

‘Develop an application that allows WCS to track their workers activities, record their progress and allowed clients to view jobs ‘live’ and provide feedback.’

For WCS, this was revolutionary. It allowed their focus to remain on the quality of their services, by including the clients in the feedback process to validate their work. The commercial benefits of this solution is that it fosters transparency, streamlines the process and promotes ad-hoc services, increasing revenue. The strategic impact of an application such as this would increase tender transparency, improve worker entitlements across industry and create a fair competitive marketplace.

The Pitch

Identifying a solution to WCS’s problem was half the hurdle- now the Partners in Grime team had to wow the judges with their presentation.

With a mix of visual aids and a practical demonstration of how the application would work, the judges were blown away with the simplicity of the solution to a complex idea. The Partners in Grime’s solution for WCS successfully answered all of judging criteria including creativity; alignment with the challenge; solving a real problem; positive business impact and team dynamics.

  Team members in order of appearance (from left to right): Zoran Radevski (Wayne Cleaning Systems), Helen Luo (University of Melbourne), Ciaran Nolan (Paddl Facilitator), Chau Tran (Victoria University), Clare Challis (Canon), Sasya Natasanthi (University of Melbourne), Caiwei Chen (University of Melbourne), Kellen Huang (Swinburne University of Technology), Dilani Landers (Wayne Cleaning Systems), Nhi Huynh (Paddl Alumni).

Team members in order of appearance (from left to right): Zoran Radevski (Wayne Cleaning Systems), Helen Luo (University of Melbourne), Ciaran Nolan (Paddl Facilitator), Chau Tran (Victoria University), Clare Challis (Canon), Sasya Natasanthi (University of Melbourne), Caiwei Chen (University of Melbourne), Kellen Huang (Swinburne University of Technology), Dilani Landers (Wayne Cleaning Systems), Nhi Huynh (Paddl Alumni).

A Well-Earned First Place!

The outcomes for WCS from this solution were impressive. Not only had their team developed a relevant, implementable solution, but it’s overall effect would benefit the cleaning industry as a whole- by standardising the work completed and ensuring workers were compensated accordingly. By streamlining the WCS service, a more transparent approach could be taken to their processes, encouraging more digital adoption amongst the cleaning industry! Partners in Grime did exceptionally well to deliver a meaningful solution to WCS, all whilst meeting the judging criteria and theme of the day.

Partners in Grime also received two other awards to add to their winners haul! A ‘Facilitators Choice Award’ was presented to Sasya Natasanthi from the University of Melbourne, which recognised the hard work she put in over the course of the day, making sure everyone contributed equally and guided her team to success. Secondly, the ‘Best and Fairest Award’ went to Kellen Huang from Swinburne University of Technology, for being a team player and huge contributor all the way through. For business owner Zoran Radevski and his team, their day at the COSBOA Innovation Games was an experience they will never forget!

Be Part of the next Innovation Games!

Congratulations once again to Partners in Grime on a successful day of innovative problem solving on Day 3 of the COSBOA Innovation Games (Victoria) 2018! We at Paddl Co. hope everyone involved gained something positive from the experience. There are still TWO MORE Innovation Games on the horizon, so head to paddljobs.com, update your profile and we’ll keep you posted!