Process Improvement does not have to be costly – it can be as simple as a conversation with key employees, review of the process and upskilling your staff in current software functionality.
Many clients recognize long and tedious processes throughout their businesses but are unsure of how to identify the central cause and the appropriate actions to take as solutions.
Process improvement activities are scalable, they can be as simple as a skilled specialist reviewing the process end to end, identifying silos, manual processes through to identifying training opportunities, offering solutions such as shortcuts and activating components of under- utilised systems, and updating or providing training documentation.
On the higher end of the scale, process improvement activities can become large projects involving discovery activities, software consolidation, implementation, or upgrades (involving customisation) and change management activities.
Highly Effective Low Cost – Process Improvement
A great example of an inexpensive but highly effective process improvement activity is with an Australian Manufacturing client that were becoming increasingly frustrated by their lengthy dispatch process. Under–resourced, the business unable to conduct a thorough investigation into improving the process engaged the consultancy.
Our consultant executed the following activities:
During the investigation it was discovered that an employee had been advised to manually change the status of 100 orders daily from the “On Hold” to a “Ready to Print Pick Slip” status, causing a bottleneck, in addition to her other duties this was a long and time-consuming activity.
It was identified that the team had not been fully utilising the software system and needed to be retrained. The team also were not aware of the status automation capability of the software platform either.
Automating the status process within the system made a massive difference to the dispatch timeline. Training the employee on shortcuts in the form of macros to use in the event smaller batches of status changes had to be done in the system where automation was not appropriate were also effective.
This not only considerably improved the dispatch process timeline but gave an employee considerable time back in her week.
This demonstrates with the right specialist skillset and the time to investigate, armed with the right solutions, businesses can be running more effectively and efficiently without the intervention of large-scale project improvement costs.
This is not to say that large scale projects are not necessary, the role of the consultant is to bring improved business processes in the timeliest and cost-effective way possible.
Engage with us today to discuss your process improvement needs, regardless of scale. We look forward to helping you achieve your business goals.
Author | Ruth Byrne – Senior Consultant, Digital Convergence