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Intellectual Capital Capture Redesign

Fundamental Guide to the Sanitizing of Intellectual Capital

August 2005
Sanitizing fundamentals: Why sanitize?

Sanitizing client documents helps ensure client confidentiality while still

capturing the best practices, tools, methodologies and ideas from A.T. Kearney
engagement teams

Sanitized materials can be more widely and more quickly shared among groups

Ideally, all sanitized materials have already passed the screens for innovation, universality
and transferability and represent solid, repeatable learning

Sanitized documents are the building blocks for firm-wide intellectual capital (IC)

Documents included in the IC Tracker (Shareable IC) must be sanitized prior to posting

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Sanitizing fundamentals: Protecting our clients

The basic goal of sanitizing documents is to hide the clients identity and other
confidential information while maintaining the integrity of information about
the engagement, process, work plans, techniques, methods and industry
When in doubt about the confidentiality of information in a document, it is necessary to shield
all identifying details

The client name should be removed and replaced with a generic description (e.g., North
American Rail Company)

Veil or revise financial results or projections

Remove client-specific recommendations or situation analyses

Delete the Production Services document number

Unless the client has granted specific, written permission

that the client name and details of the engagement can be
shared, this information should be sanitized before adding
materials to the IC Tracker (Shareable IC)
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Sanitizing fundamentals: Who is responsible for IC

Each author is accountable for ensuring that the approved engagement IC capture, synthesis
and sanitizing

As the owner of sanitizing, the author can support this activity in a number of ways:
The author (team member) knows the project context and content and should know how to
sanitize properly.
Administrative Support: If it is merely a search-and-replace sanitizing activity, an
administrative assistant or an editor in Production could be asked to do this. If there is a
need to understand the content/context at all, an AA/Production editor should not be asked
to sanitize.
PKS: While this is not a PKS accountability, they might be enlisted to help with sanitizing if
they have some capacity to do it and the engagement team is overwhelmed with
engagement work. Like the engagement consultants, the PKS will bring context and
content to the task.

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Sanitizing Fundamentals Client Confidential Material

Confidential material: Using a standard methodology for

sanitizing materials will help us achieve more consistent

Type of Information Fundamental Changes Other Considerations

Sample Client Name (e.g., Sara (Client name); client or diversified Some clients given their size or specialty,
Lee Corporation) consumer-goods manufacturer might be difficult to hide. In this case, a broader
industry descriptor should be used

Division or Parent Company (Division name) or (parent name); It may be necessary to assign divisions
Name (e.g., Bali Company) client division or client parent; or consistent numbers or letters for the entire
division X and division Y document

Product Name (e.g., Hanes, (Client product name); product H; If many products are referenced, it is often
Leggs) hosiery product easier to remove all labels

Geographic References (e.g., Plant X, plant Y; southern U.S. If a city that is closely linked with the client is
Winston-Salem Knitting Plant) facilities; Central American mentioned, it should be shielded

Financials and Numeric Results $ MM, $ B; $XX,XXX Simply rounding numbers is not sufficient:
X.X%; cycle time of X published industry norms should be used or, if
unavailable, the real numbers can be multiplied
by an unusual number (like Pi or square roots)

The tone of the document will dictate which format is best,

but once this is determined, consistency is vital

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Sanitizing Fundamentals Other Considerations

Other considerations: Even with a conscious effort to

sanitize all client-confidential materials, past practices and
future needs will require adjustments to the process

Materials that do not need to be sanitized

Company or competitor profiles where all information comes from published sources or the
client information has been approved by the project or client officer
Proposals (if the job was not won; proposals should be sanitized if the work initiated)
Documents that do not meet the innovation, universality, transferability screen and should
not be kept for future use (In other words, if it is deemed important enough to add to the IC
Engagement Plan, dont bother)

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Sample Unsanitized and
Sanitized Slides

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Example of S&OP input: Forecast variance by brand

Analysis of Absolute Forecast Variance by Brand Unsanitized

(January to May) Monthly Base (Millions of Pounds)

8.1 7.6
6.6 6.7
4.3 4.6

Frosted Raisin Corn Froot B.S. Frosted Corn Rice Special K Apple Special
Flakes Bran Flakes Loops Mini Wheats Pops Krispies Jack Pack

% Monthly 16% 17% 40% 31% 24% 25% 28% 22% 72% 34%
% Total 15% 12% 11% 8% 7% 6% 5% 5% 4% 4%

% Total 8% 7% 15% 10% 7% 6% 6% 4% 6% 2%


Top 10 brands = 71% of variance

Source: Client forecast accuracy reports (by month)

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Example of S&OP input: Forecast variance by brand

Analysis of Absolute Forecast Variance by Brand Sanitized

(January to May) Monthly Base (Millions of Pounds)
10.0 8.7
7.7 Multiply All Numbers on
8.0 6.4 6.0 Chart by a Random Number
6.0 5.2 5.3
3.4 3.6
Change Product

% Monthly 13% 13% 32% 24% 19% 20% 22% 17% 57% 27%
% Total 12% 9% 9% 6% 5% Multiply
6% All Numbers
4% on 4% 3% 3%
Volume Grid by a Random Number

% Total 6% 5% 12% 8% 5% 5% 5% 4% 5% 2%

Multiply by a
Top 10 brands = 56% of variance Random Number

Source: Client forecast accuracy reports (by month)

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Sanitizing Fundamentals Intellectual Capital

Sanitizing fundamentals: What are the benefits to

sanitizing IC?

Sanitized documents form the foundation for client communication packages

and firm-wide IC
If a document presents a new or improved capability, efforts should be made to ensure that
the deliverable reflects the best examples of A.T. Kearney know-how

From analysis of sanitized documents, we should be able to identify new products or

offerings and determine the best means to communicate them to clients

Client-work products or sections of deliverables from numerous engagements can be

combined into best practice packages around a specific capability

These best practice packages can include: client communication presentations,

explanatory pieces, case studies, tools, methodologies or tool kits

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