ALTEN Centers of Competence – Presented by Paul T.


Paul Tulip is a Project Director working for ALTEN’s Aerospace and Defence Division, as a part of our Technical Direction organisation. Prior to joining ALTEN in early 2019, Paul was working on Defence and Civil Aerospace projects for a major OEM, progressing from a technical foundation in engineering systems and verification, through to technical project management and global operations roles. In this interview, Paul introduces ALTEN’s approach to enhance our consultants’ experience, and increase customer value, through the deployment of Centres of Competence (CoC).


What is a CoC?

A CoC is a deployed means to exploit the collective capabilities of many, to accelerate group learning, and achieve enhanced customer solutions. Included in this are the 3 pillars of interlinked technical communities, knowledge libraries, and a breadth of available training on product, process and toolset.

When is a CoC deployed?

ALTEN CoCs are deployed to target the specific technologies and the associated key capabilities that are important to our current and future prospective customers.

Who is involved?

The keyword I would associate with the CoC model is ‘community’. Each consultant brings a unique breadth and depth of knowledge and experience, which given the correct means can contribute to strengthening a CoC. Central to this is a group of specialists led by a Head of CoC, who between them form a governance committee to enable the CoC to meet its objectives, and own the specific initiatives to enhance collective learning in their technical disciplines.

How does this enhance the skills/experience of our consultants?

The CoC provides access to a breadth of training, learning materials, and a specialist network. This enables our consultants to utilise resources beyond their own experience, and that of their immediate team, to deliver solutions to their project customers. In doing so the consultants own experience and capabilities grow at an enhanced rate, providing additional opportunities to take on increasingly challenging projects, and the agility to expand into new technical areas with confidence.

How does this translate into value for our customers?

The CoC centrally holds the current and future capabilities identified as being most important to our customers, allowing us to quickly understand customer needs, and deploy effective project solutions with a high level of quality, agility and autonomy. The CoC also centrally drives the continuous improvement initiatives associated with technical developments in our project solutions, targeted at productivity savings to our customers.

How does the CoC interact with ALTEN Innovation Hubs?

A further ALTEN initiative to bring additional value to our customers are the ALTEN Innovation Labs, which will be the subject of a future interview. Where the innovation lab provides targeted investment in the availability of specific technologies for our consultants to utilise on projects, the CoC provides the knowledge to exploit these technologies to the benefit of the customer.


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