Knowing The Next Step
A Guide to Business Process Standardisation
What is Business Process Standardisation?
Business Process Standardisation is defined as an effort to create a standard procedure which an organization, department or team always uses to complete some repeatable task. The best way to do this is to assess all the ways in which a task can be completed, establish the best approach, then create measures or documentation to ensure this procedure is followed.
A world without BPS
The aforementioned description may lead one to think that BPS is a nice-to-have or a continuous improvement gimmick, but BPS is all around us, consistently nudging society in the right direction whenever we veer off course. Imagine trying to govern your company’s auditing team without the guidance of book-keeping standards and the Code of Professional Conduct. When you’re inevitably forced to take your auditors to court following likely dishonesty and many rands lost, imagine you had to do so with no standard approach to legislation and justice. Indeed, BPS prevents the reign of havoc in many realms of our society, and here are some ways in which it can do the same for your business:
How BPS Benefits Your Busines
Promotes quality, productivity, and even improvement
Let’s use part-assembly as an example here. Quality is guaranteed when workers follow the same, clearly communicated procedure, ensuring minimal-to-no variability between products built by different artisans. Furthermore, since our standardized approach would be the best (cheapest, fastest, most value-adding) one, we can be assured that productivity levels are at their highest. BPS also facilitates improvement since our standard will set a baseline for metrics, such as expected operator efficiency. A business process cannot improve its productivity levels without some baseline figure to measure performance against.
Improves employee morale and autonomy
A machine breakdown occurs, and, with your implementation of BPS, your maintenance team knows exactly which steps to follow and what documentation to complete. Not only is downtime reduced, but your employees are aware of what steps to take and can take pride in being empowered to govern themselves. It doesn’t hurt that all your breakdowns, root causes and the actions taken are recorded in an orderly fashion, in compliance with auditing standards.
Ensures employee safety
In establishing a new standardized business procedure, we identify the “best” way to complete the job. Since “best” is defined not as cheapest or fastest but as “most desirable”, establishing a “best” practice must also consider your employees’ safety.
Documenting what steps are to be followed in a standardized process is a core principleof BPS. Should an unexpected problem occur, a production output anomaly, for example, you can pinpoint at exactly what stage in the process the error occurred and identify how to prevent that error from occurring ever again. Heck, with a system such as Checkmate’s 8D App, you can even create a BPS for this problem-solving process!
Facilitates training & smooth hand-overs
Picture this: your plant manager has “had it” and is emigrating to Australia. Cue panic – what on earth is the company to do? Your plant manager has been there for 10 years and is highly knowledgeable on all the intricacies of the company. Fear not, documented standard approaches to all company processes serve as training material for new staff members.
Process standardisation not only enables but ensures a job well done, and it comes in a plethora of forms.
It’s the YouTube video tutorial that enabled me (a 24-year-old female) to singlehandedly dis- and reassemble my washer-dryer machine to replace its O-ring. It’s the instruction manual that teaches a first-time parent how to assemble their child’s 3-in-1 foldable pram-carriage-car seat. It’s the SOP below, that enables even the ineptest of artists to draw a happy pig.
Business Process Standardisation guarantees we always know the next step in a trusted process that promises quality and timeliness of output, while ensuring the safety of those involved in the process. With Checkmate’s suite of products for production, maintenance and employee relations management, our clients always know the next step and can easily measure performance of their standard business processes, through clear intuitive reporting. Find out more at www.checkmate.co.za