In-Plants Need Business Process Improvement Too!, Part II
By Richard Losch on May 14th, 2012
In my blog on April 26th I reflected on the WTT article In-Plants: “The Times They Are A-Changin’” by Barb Pellow. In that blog I reflected primarily on the first part of the article on how the market is changing for In-Plants and how BPI can help adjust. Now I want to discuss the second part of the article “What’s an In-Plant to Do?” Barb lists six core values that have remained constant for In-Plants, and I look to how Business Process Improvement supports or enhances these values.
The first point is “Responsiveness to Customer Needs.” BPI supports this by focusing on reducing cycle times for business operations, thereby improving the turnaround for customer requests.
The second Value is “Automating Document Process.” Using process mapping tools, In-Plants can show their knowledge in a clear and easily understood graphic approach. Process mapping will help in identifying key functional responsibilities as well as areas needing automation the most.
The next two Values In-Plants possess are the “Ability to Evolve Effectively Over Time” and “Developing New Areas of Expertise.” BPI is a tool which helps to clearly identify the current state of In-Plant operations and to build a picture of the future state in terms of new process and new capabilities. BPI can then drive preparation of a roadmap of effort required to evolve to the future state. By using BPI metrics, In-Plants can track and measure their progress in the evolution, and ROI on new capabilities.
The fifth Value In-Plants also do a superb job at is “Assessing New Technologies”, both in the impact a new technology will have on the business process and the costs and challenges to implement by using BPI. Combining the knowledge of the technologies and the cross functional stakeholders’ roles, BPI helps the organization to smoothly introduce new technologies in the shortest time and with minimal cost.
In-Plants Value in “Educating Constituents on What You Can Do and What Can Be Done” is improved through the focus on process and cross functional co-operation. This focus improves the relationships and openness of the constituents by showing the interdependencies of the various constituents. BPI helps to establish a business culture more open to discussing capabilities and limitations in the operations.
In-Plants position within the organization gives them a full understanding of the corporate cultures and BPI provides a methodology to use that knowledge and unique position to optimize the value In-Plants have for document delivery.