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CPI-Continuous process improvement: How to avoid (work) waste!

Efficient processes are crucial for a company’s success. Medium-sized craft businesses, not just big players, can benefit from continuously optimizing processes. Here’s a practical example of CPI.

Have you ever heard the phrase “We’ve always done it this way” in your professional career? If you’re new to a company and want to make changes, you may hear this sentence thrown at you, which can be discouraging. I’m not accusing anyone, as the tried and tested methods do have their place. However..

Operational blindness can affect anyone, regardless of their position.
No one is immune to it.

I am pleased to see that not only large corporations, but also an increasing number of medium-sized companies are recognizing the potential of CPI in collaboration with their employees.

Improving processes in a company is not a quick process, it’s a continuous effort that requires collaboration from all team members. Adlerblick Altbausanierung GmbH’s management and employees have entrusted me to guide them in identifying and eliminating unnecessary work. I will provide them with tools and methods to help them efficiently eliminate waste and streamline their processes.

The optimization process results in satisfied employees, customers, and a higher level of quality.

Many employees at Adlerblick Altbausanierung were unfamiliar with the concept of professional process optimization. Therefore, it was crucial to present the techniques in a simple and understandable manner that did not require a degree in business administration. At its core, CPI involves basic and logical principles that are often obscured by complicated jargon and technical language.

There are essentially three types of work services:
  • When we work for the customer, we benefit the customer.
  • When we do organizationally necessary work, we benefit the company.
  • When we do work that serves neither the customer nor the company, it’s a waste.

Where is the waste hiding?
There are many ways in which people waste time and potential. Let’s take a look at some of the most common activities and opportunities that lead to this.

• Unnecessary transport of materials, products or information.
Example: The employees who collaborate with each other work on different floors.

• Unnecessary inventory
Example: Employee email inboxes are overflowing, or the warehouse is stocked with an unnecessary amount of products.

• Unnecessary movement
Example: It takes too many steps on the PC to complete a task.

• Unnecessary delays
Example: Waiting for missing information to complete a job.

• Wrong technologies or processes
Example: Disproportionate number of team meetings or inappropriate tools.

• Producing/doing more than required
Example: Providing unnecessary information that has not been requested by the customer.

• Unnecessary scrap or rework.
Example: A data entry error results in the customer not receiving the invoice.

The goal is to transition from a traditional corporate culture to a Continuous Process Improvement (CPI) corporate culture.

It is recommended to establish a CPI corporate culture. A CPI corporate culture is different from a traditional corporate culture in the following ways: Work is carried out in interdisciplinary teams where managers empower their employees instead of just giving instructions. Each individual employee is challenged to continuously develop themselves and others. The main goal of the company is to improve quality and avoid unnecessary work. Day-to-day business decisions are based on processes rather than individual specialist knowledge. Mistakes are sought out and analyzed to improve processes. Customer satisfaction is always the top priority. All relevant information is communicated transparently.

Here are some tips to optimize your day-to-day business processes:

  • First time right – right the first time. It’s more efficient to get it right the first time, since corrections are time-consuming and costly.
  • See everything from the customer’s perspective (internal & external).
  • Completing a task in one go is more efficient than starting it again or continuing later. It takes more time and effort to resume a task, so it’s better to finish it in one sitting.
  • Really get to the bottom of a problem.
  • Train yourself and your employees to have a zero-tolerance policy for errors and strive to achieve and maintain this standard.
  • Celebrate your successes!

Conclusion: Companies like Adlerblick Altbausanierung remain competitive and set industry standards by constantly reviewing and optimizing their processes. Process optimization is not a one-off task but an ongoing effort. In today’s ever-changing world, efficiency is the key to success, both for the refurbished buildings and for the company itself.

Continuous process improvement – a win all along the line.
Another important aspect is that process optimization workshops, such as the one held at Adlerblick Altbausanierung, promote mutual understanding among employees, allowing the team to grow even closer. “It was a great day that was enjoyable for not only the managers but also the employees. We gained many insights and different perspectives, which we are now implementing together in our day-to-day work,” summarizes Adlerblick Altbausanierung CEO, Andreas Haider. Working together towards success – that’s how it should be!

Finding new paths together.
Think boldly – dare to change!

Alexander d´Huc