Knowlton Project Support

Customer Comments

I have worked with Mark over the last 18 months on a variety of Change projects.  In that time, he has clearly and consistently demonstrated all the key attributes I would expect from a Business Improvement Consultant.  Moreover, his fresh approach not only easily engages people in change, but also enables them to take ownership at a very early stage.  Mark is driven to provide the expertise for businesses to become sustainable quickly and he has certainly made a lasting impression on the Lean Champions within Balfour Beatty Rail UK.  I would have absolutely no hesitation in recommending Mark to anyone who wants to achieve sustainable change, without the need to go through a long-drawn out process.  Mark is an exceptionally dynamic, pragmatic and committed change expert who I look forward to continuing my association with long into the future.’

John Podmore (Head of Business Improvement) Balfour Beatty Rail

paula rosa

‘Mark has a great ability to engage with people at all levels, which is extremely important when you want to implement change. He is able to quickly establish the problems and work with those involved to find the best solution and deliver the results you are looking for. I would have no hesitation in recommending him – he is the simply the best in his field.’

Terry Woods (Design and Marketing Director) Manhattan Furniture Ltd

‘Having created a successful manufacturing department over the last 27 years which now provides employment for up to 300 staff I thought we were pretty good. Then I was introduced to Mark Knowlton and in turn he introduced the Lean Principals to STI Line. We are now a far better company and have a much greater understanding of workplace organisation, visual management, data capture and control of wastes. We are now able to spot trends and target problem areas ( wastes ) that we wouldn’t have even known about before we met Mark. We were privately owned until 2010 and are now part of the global STI Group. The Lean programme and the continuous improvement keeps us a step ahead of the competition.’

David Driver (Head of Production) STI Group

‘In 2007, following a long association with ‘Business Link Kent’, my company sought the help of  KPS and Mark Knowlton via the Manufacturing Advisory Service to introduce a programme of reorganization and  training. A report was produced which highlighted several aspects of the business which were in need of attention.These ranged from the definition of staffing roles and retraining where necessary to improve skills and productivity using various methods and schemes such as 5 S’s and Lean where applicable and a series of visual advisory sheets designed to aid communication with our multinational workforce.

Our latest project has involved The University of Kent Business School, who, under the guidance and direction of  KPS, have conducted an in depth study of our pricing and factory systems in order that we are able to maintain our leading edge in today’s marketplace.

It is only by using the resources of KPS and MAS and the implementation of their findings that small companies such as ours can continue to provide the quality of product and service demanded by customers today.’

Martin Gould (Managing Director) Custom Wytelyne Powder Coating

‘Stickleback Manufacturing were lucky to have the opportunity to work with Mark at a very crucial time for the business. He assisted the company with the implementation of some vital procedural systems which have had a significant impact on the efficiency of our administration. From a personal point of view as a Manager at Stickleback Manufacturing he has worked with me to develop my confidence as well as bringing to life my plans for the business through clear, defined and measurable targets. I would certainly recommend Mark’s services! Stickleback have seen a positive impact from his involvement and we look forward to working with him in the future.’

Stacey Driver (Business Development Manager) Stickleback Ltd


‘Mark was one of the main catalysts of the turnaround in the Storage division at Steelcase UK. It was his tireless work on new product introduction which provided the vehicle for the return to profitability of this division. His scope ranged from product development, engineering of production processes through to pricing and profitability planning, in addition to fostering key commercial relationships with European business partners. I have no hesitation wholeheartedly recommending Mark for any manufacturing or business management consulting work.’

Paul Owens (Financial Controller) Steelcase Inc 


 ‘Mark is great to work with, and helped us take a step back from the day-to-day and identify areas for improvement as well as making the culture shift to Lean thinking and doing.’

Bernard Pope (Company Secretary) Silent Gliss Ltd

‘I had the pleasure of travelling with Mark to China on a trade visit. We hit it off straight away due to our shared loved of innovation and entrepreneurship. When we returned to the UK Mark and I put together a cool online tool which used Mark’s expert knowledge in the Manufacturing industry. The methodical and detailed level to which Mark works to, made the project a pleasure and what he doesn’t know about the LEAN process you dont need to know’

Scott Hodson (Managing Director) OF Software Ltd

Customer feedback – LeanBenchmark™

“There were a number of benefits to our organisation; this gave us independent feedback on the status of our lean implementation, it also allowed us to compare and highlight strengths and weaknesses with others in the lean community and analyse our current status. The gap analysis offered useful suggestions for improvement projects. The assessment also focused on cultural and organisational transformation rather than just the individual uses of lean tools.”

Philipp Schuell (Lean Specialist) Trumpf GmBH & SPI Lasers Ltd.

“Benchmarking and sharing best practices between companies has proven highly successful in improving productivity and performance. This online Benchmarking resource is an excellent addition to the tool kit for anyone that is serious about best practice.”

Ailsa Kaye (Managing Director) Onsite Insights

“When starting on a lean journey it is difficult to know how far you have come as an organisation, especially in terms of measuring the impact of lean on the organisational culture, the mind-set and empowerment of staff. A few successful projects do not necessarily mean that lean is embedded throughout the organisation – it may be that we are successfully delivering results on projects but in reality we are only tinkering around the edges with a select few. Lean Benchmarking provides a useful tool for monitoring how far you have travelled on your lean journey. It provides a snapshot at a given moment in time and helps to identify gaps, open up dialogue and refocus on your organisations lean or change management strategy and priorities. It is also useful to compare your organisation with others – not that it’s a competition! For these reasons, we have found Lean Benchmarking a valuable tool for understanding where we are and have used this to support training programmes for change agents in lean.”

Susan Whitakker (Head of Performance and Improvement) Bedford Hospital NHS Trust

“If you are interested in making improvements within your business then I would seriously recommend that you consider using this tool as a part of your continuous improvement tool kit. It really helped to put my company’s Lean competencies into perspective so that we could look into the future with clear goals ahead of us. Overall I am very happy with the online Lean Benchmarking tool and with the after service provided. The questions are clear and understandable. The report generated after the questionnaire is submitted is very in-depth. All of the information and help provided is clear, down-to-earth and informative.

 Keiven Smith (Project Engineer) Cobham Microwave Ltd


The benchmarking process has been really valuable, it enabled us to consider how well we are doing and where we need to focus next. It wasn’t just about seeing how well our score compared to others (although obviously this was very interesting) the recommendations within the report meant we could identify what we needed to do next. We have now started to build our lean road map with lean objectives linked directly to the Genzyme businesses goals.”

Lesley Coombes (Lean Transformation Manager) Genzyme Ltd


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