What is Process Improvement?
According to Business Dictionary, process improvement is “Systematic approach to closing of process or system performance gaps through streamlining and cycle time reduction, and identification and elimination of causes of below specifications quality, process variation, and non-value-adding activities.” Outsourced process improvement services build better systems, help your team close existing gaps in processes, and leave them capable of continuous improvement after the engagement has concluded. It’s commonly used in manufacturing and other process-focused industries. However, what are the actual improvements you might see working with a service like this? We’ve listed the top 8 benefits below.
8 Benefits of Process Improvement Services
1. Prioritization: tackle projects your team never seems to complete
Process improvement services help you find the time to execute the projects you and your team never have time for. While you focus on getting day-to-day projects done, an outside consultant can make long-term, strategic projects a priority.
2. Save money
Reduced waste, increased unit efficiency, and more effective processes are all a valid outcome when working with a process improvement service. The side effect of reduced waste? Less unplanned overtime for your employees (reducing fatigue), fewer premium shipping costs, and increased savings.
3. Long-term ROI
Every business person expects return on their investment. Every engagement must be rooted in the processes being created/improved and the resulting ROI.. If you’re not talking about ROI with the organization you’re engaging with, you should find another partner.
4. Team building
Your return on investment isn’t only measured in dollars and cents. For instance, take our engagement with the 418th Civil Affairs Battalion. A large part of that engagement was focused on team building, measured by increased unit morale, implementing long-term leadership planning, and improving cross-team communication. Those soft outcomes resulted in many other hard ROI outcomes long after our engagement was complete.
5. Increase retention
One side benefit of the team building aspect mentioned above is increased employee retention. When morale goes up and lines of communication improve, retention rates go up. Higher retention rates save you from the pain of hiring, which is a costly, time-consuming, ineffective process.
6. Leverage the experts
As a manager, you’re not expected to be an expert at every facet of your business. That’s why we have specialists you can leverage as needed. You wouldn’t ask your IT person to do quality control at an assembly line, would you? If you don’t have experts in process improvement at your organization, it makes sense to outsource it as needed.
7. Ensure compliance
Regulatory bodies and governments are ever changing the standards you’re expected to comply with. Keeping your internal team prepared to maintain compliance is difficult. The best way to make sure you’re compliant with all regulations is by bringing in experts for all situations. Take the new IATF 16949 standard. Even if your team is aware of the standard, it’s unlikely that they have the real-world experience needed to successfully execute the transition without outside help.
8. A new perspective
People who have been in the same role at the same organization for a long time often find themselves lacking in innovation, spontaneous idea creation, and perspective. It’s not their fault - when you find yourself at the same office, working with the same team, doing the same processes for years on end it’s hard to find inspiration and creativity. An outsourced process improvement service will bring a new perspective to your organization and likely bring forth ideas for improvement that would have never been considered.
The Bottom Line
The benefits of process improvement services go above and beyond what you might expect. If you’re looking for someone to help you nail down a specific problem you’re having in your organization, process improvement can definitely help. However, the true benefits go much deeper than that. It drives improvement in team cohesion, retention rates, and a new perspective as well.
If you’re interested in learning how The Phoenix Group can drive improvement at all levels of your organization, contact us today.