Our process is fine, we are as efficient as we could be. Are you sure? Lets look at the process to make a cup of tea: Fill kettle, wash dirty cup, put in tea bag and sugar in cup, turn on kettle, wait to boil, pour boiled water into cup, get milk out of fridge, remove tea bag add milk as required. It’s a process that gets you a cup of tea but is it an efficient process. Not so much, turning the kettle on as soon as you fill it will reduce the time to make a cup of tea as would getting the milk out whilst the kettle boils or what about washing up cups whilst waiting for the kettle to boil will save you doing it next time. Now this may only save you say 10 seconds, but assume you have 10 cups a day, thats 100 seconds, over 260 days of the year that’s 26000 seconds or nearly a day.
OK so analysing and streamlining how your staff make the tea may not be the best place to start but looking around your business for small savings in efficiency may make a big difference in your office.
So how should you go about reviewing your process, what should you consider,
- Start simple, try the process yourself. You may have invented the process before you got staff, but has it changed since then and if so is it for the better? If its your process get someone else to review it, you may be too close to it to see the inefficiency.
- Are all the all steps sequential or do some work in parallel, if the latter, can you start the parallel section sooner.
- Do the parallel sections finish together? If not will adding resources benefit so that no step is waiting for another to finish
- Can technology be used?
- Does the timing of the process make a difference? Consider the time of day, day of the week or month or perhaps even the time of year.
- Talk to the third parties (external to your business) have their processes changed and can you benefit from that?
- Processes in your business should never be static, try to review them regularly.
All very simple points to remember and that is what the process in your business should be, simple.
If you would like more information on business processes and the integration of technology into the business process contact us.