Most people believe their corporation’s operational processes are good enough. Processes can always be improved upon, but how do we know if there will be enough value added to the processes to accept the stress, employee opinion and the massive amount of time it will take to make the change? Feeling capable of improving our own internal processes often pushes us to reject outside advice. When we do receive outside advice, we spend more time trying to prove that our way is best and their way will not work.
Recently I meet with a client. We discussed the pros and cons of scanning product-received paper work. The discussion expanded to looking at the ‘matching’ process, how invoices are approved, where the final paperwork is stored, and who will need access to that information. During the process my client said, “I look forward to your visits because it is always helpful to get an outside perspective on our processes.” During this face-to-face meeting, the client realized his company has an extra step in a process. The client is now working on changes to improve that process.
Insight: If you had asked my client about the ‘receiving, approval, invoicing’ process, the company would not have felt it was worth bringing in an outside advisor to assist with the process flow. However, after just a short, one-hour discussion, they have a new way to manage the process. The change is going to pay dividends on that one hour meeting every day. That is a great ROI!