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Our Work in Pharm
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Process Improvement

Process Improvement is an essential element of any customer driven and account development project. In our experience, however, there are a number of potential pitfalls, with the most common being:

  • Not involving the customer
  • Not using a cross section of staff to represent all departments
  • Using high level staff only
  • Getting bogged down in the detail and running out of steam
  • Not implementing enough of the good ideas raised, thereby demotivating staff.

Imonic have developed an approach which overcomes these problems for you, as outlined below:

  • Use customer feedback as the driver for process improvement (it is impartial and non-political, and also stands to gain you more!)
  • Use small teams of mixed seniority with a clear scope and focus
  • Restrict the process to a short, sharp hit with a limited number of workshops over a tight timeframe (we recommend a maximum period of 3 months)
  • Use small and measurable progress steps for implementing e.g. for new processes, implement for only one group of customers or products at first, in order to "test" and get quick gains
  • Use a scorecard approach to implementation, so that the "rate" of implementation can be measured to detect slippage long before the due date, and to ensure accountability is crystal clear.

Imonic have supported and facilitated literally hundreds of process improvement workshops, across departments, functions, divisions and also across countries where a common approach is required for global clients.

The structure we have found most successful can be seen in the diagram below. Some key points to bear in mind are:

Sponsors - these don't take direct involvement, but are there to support, aid decision making and raise the profile of the project (senior individuals).

Champions - this is the key position. In our experience, hungry junior managers have generated the best results.

Contributors - It is important to choose the right cross section both in each team and across teams, making sure a mix of departments is represented, and ensuring they are actively involved in the process under review. Some of our clients have also recognised the impact of cultural change, and have looked to involve key influencers in the business.

Remember, if processes are weak or not effective "consistently", they will upset customers "REPEATEDLY" creating more complaints and issue resolution work, and hence greater cost and hassle for all involved.