Process Improvement
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Process improvement is extremely important, as it leads to the elimination of redundancies and bottlenecks that lead to productivity and deadline issues. It requires a proper identification of business requirements of processes and evaluating the scope of improvement. In a highly competitive business environment, process improvement is crucial for organizations to stay a step ahead. 

Business process improvement (BPI) is even more important for organizations that have been continuing their processes for a long time, as it becomes easier to ignore redundancies if they have been going on for a while. Let’s now get into the benefits of process improvement for businesses. 

How does process improvement help businesses?

Numerous organizations have been able to decrease waste, increase profits, and drive operational efficiency by committing themselves to BPI. They have also been able to utilize their resources better and make the most of their capabilities. By adopting process improvement, businesses have been able to bring about the following benefits:

  • In-depth analysis of the existing processes of an organization, which includes checks on efficiency and their scope.
  • Identification of avenues of improvement in existing processes that could lead to greater success.
  • Alignment of these improvements with business goals.
  • Efficient resource allocation and decision-making. 

Also read: Data Silos: Breaking down the basics!

How to go about process improvement?

Now that we have established the importance of business process improvement for organizations, let’s get into the various ways in which it can be implemented. There are multiple options that exist, and the final decision needs to be taken basis business goals and the requirement at hand. Some of these options are as follows:

1. Six Sigma Tools

Six Sigma Tools are one of the most popular methods of adopting process improvement. These bunch of tools provides problem-solving support through quantitative and qualitative techniques to drive process improvement. Even though the processes are not unique or distinctive in nature, Six Sigma Tools do have a unique way of integrating and implementing them together. Following are some commonly used Six Sigma processes:

1. DMAIC

DMAIC

This procedure includes the following principles:

  • Define: In this step, the problem is identified and defined before embarking on further steps.
  • Measure: Here, metrics are identified to measure critical to quality (CTQ) aspects of the process. 
  • Analyze: Depending upon the data collected, a gap is identified between where the process efficiency is currently where it ideally should be. 
  • Improve: Various pros and cons of different approaches are assessed in order to pick the one that is most beneficial to process improvement. 
  • Control: The solutions identified above and utilized in this stage. 

2. DMADV

DMADV

While DMAIC is more focused on improving existing processes, DMADV is more commonly used to create new processes. Here are the various aspects of it: 

  • Define: Here, the problem, goals, stakeholder, and customer expectations are clearly evaluated and defined. 
  • Measure: The various factors and metrics that are relevant and crucial are marked. 
  • Analyze: Various alternatives are tried and evaluated.
  • Design: The process that meets customer’s need are documented. 
  • Verify: The effectiveness of the process is verified.

In addition to the models mentioned, some other Six Sigma tools and techniques are 5S, Seven Wastes, Value Stream mapping, etc. These can be used depending on the needs of the BPI in question. 

2. Simulation

Simulation

As the name suggests, in this BPI tool a model is created that mimics the operations of various systems. The simulation is time-based and adhered to the various resources and constraints that exist for the actual system as well. Using this, the process can be checked and the scope of process improvement can be tried and verified easily. Insights are gained quickly, which enables managers to take effective decisions. Hence, simulation is a very powerful process improvement tool. 

3. Lean manufacturing

8 Wastes of Lean Manufacturing

Lean is defined as a method of process improvement where the focus is on reducing and eliminating waste. Even though they are mostly relevant to production environments, lean methods can also be extrapolated to other spheres like healthcare, governments, etc. The primary goal of lean manufacturing is to create a process that decreases wastes significantly, utilizes resources optimally, and ensures continuous improvement. It is a very famous method as it was adopted by Toyota to create near-perfect processes and achieve success.  

4. SIPOC analysis

SIPOC

The acronym stands for Suppliers, Inputs, Process, Outputs, and Customer. This tool is primarily used to document business processes across these parameters. Depending upon the goals set for process improvement, these parameters are modified and enhances to gain maximum results. This also ensures full end-to-end visibility over the process. 

5. Total quality management

TQM Approach

Total Quality Management has guidelines that allow organizations to systematically realize goals and objectives. All employees are encouraged to work towards the same goals and customers verify and validate their efforts in the end. The performance is measured based on this feedback and the loop continues. 

In addition to the tools and techniques mentioned above, there exist many ways to bring about process improvement. The idea is to not get caught up in choosing amongst the various tools and techniques. As long as the relevant ones are identified, it is the commitment to continuous process improvement that helps a company in succeeding in this endeavor. 

Also read: Business Process Reengineering: Is it the perfect solution for your problems?

Takeaway

For organizations to succeed in today’s fiercely competitive world, the only way is to never become complacent about their processes and assume that they have got it right. A continuous and agile outlook towards process improvement can go a long way in helping an organization in standing out. Business processes also need to be automated in order to succeed, as the world around us is shifting rapidly away from manual processes. Business Process Automation eliminates all the inefficiencies and redundancies involved in manual processes and allows organizations to save up on precious resources and time while ensuring higher profitability. 

Quixy is an award-winning no-code platform that has empowered numerous organizations to undergo Business Process Automation without writing a single line of code. With our easy-to-use visual platform, automation can be done without any of the hassles that are associated with traditional coding. Our clients are a testament to the digital transformation that Quixy can bring about in your organization. 

Sign up for a free trial here and unlock success for your organization. 

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