It’s 2016 and surely everything that will be invented has been (apart from teleportation and time travel)? We know how to do everything the best way and with the best methods and tools and everything is just a re-hash of an old method – Spotify for example, just a do it yourself radio station!
So why worry about trying to improve things? Why try to find a faster, cheaper, better way of doing our jobs? Surely it’s just better to get on with the work, answering queries, chasing clients, producing our products and providing client services. Change just messes things up, slows things down and confuses people and no changes ever stick longer than a week, or a month at most, then people just get bored and go back to the way things were … Sound familiar?
It’s natural to fear change, to upset the routine and rhythm of daily life – you probably don’t have time in the working day to implement a change and why should you? It’s not your job to help improve things; your job is to get stuff done and out the door so SLAs are met, targets are hit and services delivered.
It is easy to get stuck into this way of thinking and to focus on the short and immediate term but if this really was the case then why invent MP3 players when the Walkman was perfectly fine; why go to the Moon when the Earth is doing an excellent job at providing an atmosphere; and how are sport stars constantly breaking records?
Process improvement is the answer and it doesn’t matter how big or small a change can be to improve things. Marginal gains are just as important as huge ones and often add up to a bigger overall improvements. The British Cycling team is probably the most prominent example of this and Sir Dave Brailsford’s belief is that changing many things by 1% would add up to a significant increase when you put them together: Marginal gains underpin Team GB's dominance.
But how do we translate this from the world of sport into the world of TDX Group? Firstly we look at every process and ask why we are doing the thing we are doing; does it add value to anyone? Could we do it a better, faster, cheaper way? Then we need to look at how often we perform the process or task; is it daily, weekly, monthly etc? If there is no value in this then we suggest an amendment to ultimately deliver a faster, better more efficient process for our customers.
Process improvement is already here and has been for centuries – it (along with necessity) is the mother of all invention and is the reason why companies grow and at TDX Group we are continually improving everything we do and embedding a LEAN culture of process review to improve the services we provide.
Paul Sibley, Head of IT Process Improvement
Tony Palminteri, Lean Process Improvement Specialist