Meeting customer demands through process
In order to improve the overall efficiency of a business, it is important to begin with the fundamental processes that underpin the services that the business provides. This involves a structured approach: defining business objectives, identifying current processes and performing audits to identify areas for improvement. Increasing financial constraints have squeezed public and private sector businesses and lead to radical changes in the way that they operate. Incremental changes are no longer enough to improve business processes; businesses must adapt and move with the changing market, and essential to this is transforming processes.
The process of improving processes
When it comes to improving processes, there are several things to take into account. Process mapping can identify all of the activities involved in delivering a service, and allow you to determine which add value to your customers and which do not. One way to see how well your current processes are performing is to collect data and measure the unit cost of each output. ABC (activity based costing) allows you to do this. The amount of time that staff allocate for various activities can be tracked and measured against one another: value-adding activities can then be identified and potentially invested in whilst non-value adding activities can be targeted for elimination and to increase efficiency.
However the best results are obtained when processes are designed to meet the needs of the customer. Businesses often go wrong by restructuring or designing IT systems before they carry out a comprehensive evaluation of the needs of the customer. This results in an ineffective redesign of processes with no consideration for customer needs and inevitably the introduction of costs.
You can see our case studies for examples of where this methodology has been used to improve and overhaul existing processes. In one example, ValueAdding.com helped Watford Borough Council to identify £56,000 worth of savings by streamlining the proceses involved in their licensing services. This involved process mapping in order to identify areas of inefficiency; activity based costing to calculate the cost of various processes and quantify the savings potential and then using the data gathered from this audit to model the shape of the future processes. At the end of the project, ValueAdding.com were able to identify savings of 19% of total costs, a figure which was higher than the client had anticipated.
Improving business processes practical course
ValueAdding.com provide internal training courses for improving and transforming business processes. Choose from either a one or two day intensive course, where you will learn a proven methodology for managing and delivering effective services. This course is suited to anybody who has responsibility for managing processes and delivering efficiency savings. We tailor our training according to the specific needs of your business; be that workshop facilitation, data analysis or change management.
ValueAdding.com are experts in transformation; having successfully redesigned processes for local authorities, commercial organisations and charities.
Talk to us today and find out how we can help you to turn data into insight.