Most business leaders and owners today have a lot of issues to deal with. Unfortunately, ‘fight fires’ and dealing with day to day issues doesn’t allow enough time to spend on a key part of any business: Business Process Management.
As it is in life, setting up and improving on processes can make life less stressful and allow us to focus on other important areas. For instance, you most likely have a morning routine, before bed routine, cleaning routine and so forth. These routines are actually based in processes and in business, process management is just as important to allow you to make your business the best it can be.
Toyota has proven this in the automotive industry, Google has as well as a search engine dominator and McDonald’s is incomparable in its fast food restaurant processes. Process creation and management is crucial for any business and business model.
3 Reasons Why You Need to Create Superior Processes
#1: Industries and Business Models are getting more complicated
Industries are rapidly changing, from rapid growth to rapid decline. These forces in conjunction with the disruptive technologies such as cloud computing, process automation, big data and mobile computing has only driven up the importance of companies needing to focus on business process management.
The energy industry, for instance, is making a shift from a hierarchical “cathedral” fossil-based model to a decentralised, locally produced, locally consumed and sustainable model. Facing stringent competition and miniscule margins, agriculture needs to evolve from being a single link in the industrial food product and distribution chain to becoming an organic resource focused on the local market.
With industry development comes change to a company’s business model and IT.
According to an Industrial Defender survey of 134 professionals in critical infrastructure companies (manufacturing, chemical, utilities etc.) the “relationship between I.T. and operations is getting more complicated. 73% of those surveyed expect to see either significant or moderate increases in connectivity between industrial endpoints and corporate IT infrastructure over the next three to five years.” In other words, the internet of things (IoT) is growing fast.
What this means is that companies need to constantly refine their processes and technology so that they can not only compete in their industry but do it more efficient and cost effective manner as the internet of things grows.
#2: The rapid rise of cloud, mobile computing & AI
It’s not just the proliferation of mobile devices that’s ignited the move to cloud computing and mobile computing. Leading companies and organizations are rapidly realizing the business and economic benefits of increased sales, customer retention, brand awareness and productivity using these two technologies and embracing Artificial Intelligence (AI). An Eccentex survey reveals that “58.6% of respondents said the use of mobile tools ‘increases productivity’ and 27% of respondents said working remotely makes work ‘easier.’”
The cost of moving to the cloud or developing a mobile application – which Forrester Research places between $20k and $150k – may be a deterrent for some companies. But for industries like construction, it’s hard not to quickly comprehend the benefits of mobile computing and business process management. The tablet trumps the laptop when it comes to weight and battery life, making it ideal for construction engineers overseeing a multitude of projects and needing accessibility on the field.
#3: The Rise of the Impatient Customer
With the power of instant information (i.e. Google) and extensive purchasing power on their fingertips, the customer has more power to switch their buying patterns immediately to competitors around the globe like never before. This makes it critical to ensure all your business processes are built with the end goals of customer retention and customer loyalty in mind.
Live chat software is one avenue companies are exploring to make the shift from static to dynamic website functionality. According to Forrestor research, 44 percent of online consumers rank live chat as the most important website feature. A live chat customer service rep can handle up to three people at once while the phone is restricted to one.
Another avenue is providing customers visibility to their order and giving them information to choose your company as the best for their needs. Some companies (such as UPS and Dell) realized that providing real-time tracking to customers for their purchase, they could build trust with their customers and be a recommended service.
Many business leaders and owners think that their processes are ‘good enough’ or that it costs too much to improve and optimize their processes. Usually, they aren’t and is “good enough” the best standard to aim for in your business? Superior processes will make for a Superior Business Brand.
There are numerous technologies to help automate existing processes to free up time and allow you, the business owner, to focus on managing processes as opposed to just try to simply keep them working.
Gerry Anderson, M.Sc., CPA, CMA is
President, Logicon Solutions
As a senior consulting professional and entrepreneur, Gerry has over 15 years of industry experience working in both the public and private sector and 14 years’ experience as a management consultant. His varied experience has allowed him to develop strong leadership skills and a unique skill set for optimizing finance, IT and logistics / supply chain operations. Fully trained in various process management, change management and quality management methodologies, Gerry has completed a variety of consulting engagements for clients throughout North America. He specializes in helping clients transform their back office functions and business models into top tier performers.
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