Business process improvement (BPI) isn’t just another trendy, vague buzzword everyone’s going to throw about for a few years without meaningfully changing anything – it’s a concept that any business can easily understand and, most importantly, put into action. Here’s how BPI works, with practical examples.
What is business process improvement?
This concept is much more straightforward than the other jargon that flies off tech websites into oblivion. Essentially, it’s exactly what it says on the box – it’s the active improvement of the processes your business uses to deliver its products and services, and it’s been around for decades. Today, it’s changed a lot in terms of how it’s applied and how accessible the benefits are. It now means using the right tech solutions suited to your business as well as changing the mindset around how your operations run, making them lean, mean, waste-elimination and innovative-driven profit machines.
Here are some common issues businesses struggle with and how BPI solves them
#1 – Quality improvement
Product defects are a lose-lose situation, upsetting customers and your bottom line. With the right tech in place, you can detect quality issues faster, introduce process automation to error-proof manufacturing, understand the financial impacts of rework or defects to reduce waste, and draw insights from customer complaints. The right collaboration tools also allow teams to work together to get to the root of issues and fix them more effectively, making everyone a stakeholder in process improvement.
#2 – Reducing operational costs
Unlike what Mr Musk believes, firing everyone is not the solution when it comes to cutting costs. Just the opposite! It’s about using your resources to do more while getting rid of anything that gets in the way of them getting their job done effectively. Depending on your business, this can include more accurate forecasting to prevent perishables from going off or items sitting in the warehouse taking up space. It’s reviewing contracts to ensure they still meet your needs, shifting to digital platforms for smart energy use/supply chain management/preventative maintenance, and actively investing in process improvement technologies.
#3 – Eliminating inefficiencies
Spending hours on admin, duplicating work with multiple databases or tools, having too many meetings, or having a slow approval process are all inefficiencies that the right technology can eliminate. BPI is actually delivering what we all thought computers would be able to do decades ago – taking on all the mind-numbing, endless routine tasks that fill up our days, so we have time to do something that actually matters. From financial and HR processes to performance monitoring, reporting, and even cybersecurity, automation does it all faster and more accurately. And it doesn’t just make us more efficient and productive at our tasks – it also eliminates those errors that make us human.
#4 – Happier customers
When BPI is done right, it’s not just your employees and stakeholders that are happier – it’s your customers too. Apart from minimising defects, these tech solutions work to maximise customer value by giving customers more visibility over their orders, faster delivery, easier and more effective issue resolution, easier access to the right skills-based contact for queries, and quick onboarding processes. Customers have a greater ability to interact with your products, services, and processes online to put them in the front seat, and it can also make your business more sustainable, which customers are actively looking for and willing to pay a premium for.
Business process improvement is easier to customise to your organisation and implement than you think. These tech solutions have reached a level of maturity that minimises risk and disruption for teams and takes core business processes out of high-risk legacy systems and into appropriate hands.
The evolution of your business is here. And your customers, employees, and bottom line love the results. Chat with Otto today and see what tech can really do for your business.