Friday, October 19, 2012

It Requires Effort to Keep Business Processes Simple

The key to keeping simple is to build it with durability in mind. Convenience is often a challenging objective to reach. As people, we generally aim to keep things as simple as possible despite the propensity to make them more complicated than necessary. When provided with information, it is our characteristics to synthesize what is before us, comprehend the details and consider all options before doing even the tiniest factor. Try as we might, our propensity for details and thoroughness normally goes us toward complicated techniques. The the necessary attempt to secure simplicity is significant and simple techniques - those which can quickly be kept in mind, recognized, applied and calculated - will, eventually become complicated.

A few decades ago, I had the benefit of working straight with a professional and specialized group of software technicians. Our objective was to make a very simple process that we could use to regulate all the perform that we did together. It took several weeks of events, evidence of idea and individual conversations to get the group to buy into the idea of simplicity. It took another few several weeks for us to consent upon simple at a advanced level. After much perform, we decided that the easiest process for us was a three-step process in which perform could be obtained, prepared, and provided. We described what was necessary to receive perform in the vital factor, what was needed in order to process the perform and that which was needed to provide the perform upon achievement.

The end result was a process that could quickly be trained and discovered. The program we developed was repeatable, considerable and clear and understandable. It was amazingly versatile too. The only factor left was for the group to determine how to evaluate the performance and performance of this new process. It would take another three several weeks to recognize the analytics.

At the end of the three several weeks, I met with the group and they informed me that they had not only determined the key analytics, but they had penalized updated the process to make it better and more extensive. They desired to leave no rock unchecked so they added a number of sub-steps to each of the three major actions. While the sub-steps did provide process customers with more specific guidelines that were very specific to our particular type of perform, the additional actions also complicated the process and made it quite boring. Remember, the initial objective was to make simple.

It my experience, technicians want to know as much details as possible about their perform. Very often, the drawback of such thinking is that it stops the development of simple techniques that can be quickly implemented and managed. In our case, even the tiniest modify to our process circulation would require following actions to be modified as well. The group finished up producing more than fifty key analytics to evaluate the potency of the formerly simple process. With so many points to consider, the process became very challenging to sustain and furthermore, it was very obscure. In the course of three several weeks, our simple process had deteriorated into a complicated sequence of actions that no one was going to use. Therefore, it was back to the illustrating board.

It took another two several weeks to persuade the group to review the past process. Remarkably, the unique process has been in position now for almost 15 decades and has survived business changes, management changes, mergers, products and changes to the group that put the program into position. The process itself is still quite simple and has only gone through minimal changes, indicating its versatility.

A good process - whether complicated or simple - can hold up against modify. In creating simple, group management, venture professionals and business management have to secure against the enticement to "fine tune" techniques with small improvements that can, eventually, add needless actions to a process that is already built to properly provide its designed purpose. Leaders can prevent techniques from becoming too complicated by asking the following questions:  
  •     Is the suggested modify absolutely necessary?
  •     Will the modify be used by all customers of the current process?
  •     Will the modify help make the process even easier to use, sustain and support?
If the answer to any one of the concerns above is "no," the process modify should not be applied. It is simple to confuse a process and challenging to secure simplicity. However, a smart, simple work-flow that is repeatable, considerable and versatile is well worth the attempt for the life of the process.

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