Business process improvements

Our first blog in this new series about digital transformation is about improving business processes, with our Transformation Consultant Nicola Ratcliffe.

Process Improvement Steps

It's not quite the dry subject that you might think - honest! It is a fascinating look at how processes have developed and evolved over time and how they can be improved for the benefit of customers, staff and the organisation.

So how do you start? Throw away the post-its and brown paper, don't even think of starting up Visio! Gather together those people who deliver the process, from end to end. Then - drum roll, please - ask them what they do!

Process Improvement WorkshopYes, I know, it sounds a bit simplistic but, think about it, who knows the process inside and out? Who knows not only what happens (and often why) and where the pain points are for customers and the team?

Naturally, there will be resistance, my experience shows that engaging people in this way helps them feel part of the solution rather than having something done to them. The first time I did a big service review, I knew the people well (chatted to them daily about all sorts of things) but they still entered the room as if they had never seen me before and sat with folded arms. As the session wore on they became more and more animated, sharing their experiences and really participating in the session. In fact, a number came to me after the session to provide extra information!  

Process Improvement Workshop GroupWith them, work your way, step by step through the process. Capture all snippets of information offered as part of the discussion and, most importantly, capture how long each step takes. No, the answer is not "as long as a piece of string!!" ask them to consider an average and allow then to reflect on this later. Capturing this level of detail does not need to be time consuming, we have amazing software that we use to capture all of this and then to share it after the event. We can even analyse the processes to understand costs and ....... I'll come back to this is a future blog. Once you have used this you will never look back!

The trickier part is engaging people in the designing the proposed process, this can often be seen as turkeys voting for Christmas. As a group, we improvement proposals and then look at what this means, again mapping the detail so that we can compare the processes (again using the software).

From these two workshops, we capture enough detail to be able to not only understand the business impact of the proposals but also the activity that is required to ensure that the changes happen.

Process Improvement StepsWhen was the last time that anyone showed this level of interest in anything that you do? If you would like to participate in a business process improvement experience, get in touch now.

For more information about us, the work that we do and how we could help you deliver your transformation programmes visit

Useful Pages

Share this page

Facebook icon Twitter icon Email icon


Print icon