How to Assess and Resolve Business Process Issues
By Paul Ursich
As companies grow, they often fail to focus on the technology or resources required to maintain their edge in the marketplace. This can lead to a breakdown in business process optimization, hinder productivity and impact morale. Take, for example, a construction company that approached Wiss after experiencing 300 percent growth over a five-year period. While sales had tripled, the size of the accounting department and the technology used to run the business never changed. By conducting a thorough assessment of the affected staff, processes and systems, we incorporated new process and technology changes that eliminated the client’s stress points, reduced error rates and increased overall efficiencies.
You know your business has a process problem when critical processes are performed manually, deadlines get missed, staff is frustrated, and even your customers know you have problems. That’s when it’s time to call in advisors who can help your company identify the problems and introduce process and technology solutions to boost productivity and make life easier for management, staff, customers and vendors.
Here is the framework Wiss uses to assess and resolve an organization’s process issues.
Identify the problem
Sounds easy, right? We start with an analysis of your current processes, review all associated tasks and activities, interview the people involved and study the impact of the current process on your company, employees, clients, vendors and anyone else who touches or is touched by the way things are done now.
Discover working alternatives
After becoming fully familiarized with the potential stress points, we start to identify new processes and procedures, software and organizational changes that might clear the fog.
Present an implementation strategy
Once we’re convinced that we have a workable solution, we’ll answer questions and work collaboratively with decision-makers to develop and implement change. We’ll advise which steps in the existing process must be upgraded and the IT solutions, if any, we recommend putting in place. We’ll also discuss timelines, budget and resource implications. We identify a workable solution that will excite you — not just shiny objects. If we can find processes and procedures that don’t involve new technology, we’ll gladly recommend them.
Seek appropriate products, vendors, and quotes
If we recommend specific software, we’ll set up product demonstrations to gauge the feasibility of the solution under real-world conditions. After getting buy-in from your team, we’ll then conduct all necessary contract negotiations.
Install, test, and train
An IT solution is only a solution when it works in the real world. We’ll manage the project, accumulate all of the resources you need, test the solution and make sure your people are properly trained and can work the new system, minimizing initial confusion and frustration. And finally, we’ll check in periodically to make sure the new business process is still working and to help iron out whatever wrinkles might have appeared early in the implementation stage.
Every business process is different, so this is only a framework upon which we’ll study your unique set of challenges and offer fully customized solutions that fit within your organization.
As a Partner of CFO Advisory Services, Paul enjoys bridging business processes and technology. By utilizing his extensive experience in the financial industry, he works in conjunction with decision makers to streamline their financial activities.