Business Process Performance Improvement
The best way to predict the future is to… …create it!
using the Perception Dynamics approach
Business Process Re-engineering has fallen from popularity because so many process re-engineering projects failed to achieve the promised savings. It is generally accepted that the main reasons for the failure of the majority of process improvement projects is their failure to take account of the “soft” people issues.
Yet even now, when projects are implemented to improve the performance of key processes, the people aspects of the processes are often ignored. One of the main reasons for this is that, although it is possible to map and model processes, until now, it has not been possible to map the critical soft issues.
In order to understand the importance of the soft issues, consider the situation of a supermarket. It is possible to map the process of loading the shelves with products, and collecting the payment at the tills. Important as these processes are, they give no clue as to why one supermarket is far more successful than another. They give little indication of whether a customer will continually return to purchase more products, or whether the experience will be so unsatisfactory that they will turn to a different supermarket. Nor do the process definitions explain whether staff will be motivated to create the best possible customer experience, or assist the supermarket to operate cost effectively.
However, the Perception Dynamics approach to Process Performance Improvement changes all that. The approach works back from identifying the factors that are critical to cost effectively fulfilling the customer’s needs. It allows you to design the systems that ensure staff take ownership of creating the outcomes that are critical to the customer, such as cleanliness, stock availability, customer service etc.
Similarly, traditional process improvement projects often either completely ignore the issue of measuring the process performance, or leave it to the latter states of design. The Perception Dynamics approach completely reverses that sequence. The factors that are critical to success are identified at the very initial stages, together with ways of monitoring the improvement in those critical factors. The various necessary processes are then designed in a way that maximises the ownership of the performance of the new processes, by those who will have to operate them. If required, it is even possible to design processes that progressively build team spirit and pride in the service.
The whole Perception Dynamics approach is focused on maximising the certainty of success.