Process Mapping Trims Cycle Time
Denton, D. Keith, HRMagazine
Here's a method that enables employees to review how they get work done and improve upon the processes.
At Owens-Corning, cycle time not only drives business, it drives customer satisfaction. Cycle time extends from the moment customers place an order to the moment the company receives payment for that order.
The reason Owens-Corning decided to focus on reducing Cycle time is simple. As the company concentrated on speed, it began eliminating things that were not adding value to customers. As Corning eliminated inefficiencies, it began to reduce cost and improve quality.
Often speed comes from something as simple as finding out what you are actually doing. Owens-Corning CEO and Chairman, Glen Hiner used one business unit's confirmation success rate to illustrate this point. The unit was able to confirm its customers' orders on a first-time basis, with no errors, only about 25 percent of the time. That service level was unacceptable, so the unit mapped out its process to see where the obstacles and barriers were. By having a graphical picture of what was going on, it was possible to make some simple changes that radically improved the process - and customer satisfaction.
One simple change - installing an 800 number for the fax machine - increased fax orders by 65 percent. Because fax orders are 95 percent accurate, this simple change increased overall accuracy by 50 percent. Transactions are faster too. In the past, transactions averaged 90 minutes; now they average five minutes with a maximum of 30 minutes.
Cycle time reduction at Owens-Corning centers on what it calls the three R's - responsiveness, results acceleration and resource effectiveness:
1. Responsiveness - meeting your customers' final needs within their time requirements using current resources. The objective is not to create expensive capital investments that outweigh benefits, but to make maximum use of what already exists.
2. Results acceleration - speeding up current performance to take full advantage of current resources.
Questia, a part of Gale, Cengage Learning. www.questia.com
Publication information: Article title: Process Mapping Trims Cycle Time. Contributors: Denton, D. Keith - Author. Magazine title: HRMagazine. Volume: 40. Issue: 2 Publication date: February 1995. Page number: 56+. © 1999 Society for Human Resource Management. COPYRIGHT 1995 Gale Group.
This material is protected by copyright and, with the exception of fair use, may not be further copied, distributed or transmitted in any form or by any means.