TQT is process driven. Everything that you do, sell and purchase is defined as a process.
Once you define your business down to the process level, TQT can support everything that you do, no matter your industry.
What is a Process?
It is important that you understand how we at TQT use this word, "process". There are many different management practices out there, and each has a slightly different definition of this word. When we say "process" we are referring to the ISO definition:
Process: Any activity or operation, which receives inputs and converts them to outputs. Almost all activities and operations involved in generating a product or providing a service are processes.
For organizations to function effectively, they must define and manage numerous inter-linked processes. The output from one process will directly form the input into the next process in the chain. The systematic identification and management of the various processes employed within an organization, and particularly the interactions between such processes, may be referred to as the "process approach" to management."
Processes are the core elements of any business; the basic building blocks that - when organized into a sequence - make up the steps that form procedures and products. In order for you to get the maximum benefit out of TQT, it is required that you identify and manage all of your processes.
Benefits of the Process Approach
Why it is a good idea for an organization to apply the "process approach":
By applying the "process approach" an organization should be able to obtain the following types of benefits:
- The integration and alignment of its processes to enable the achievement of its planned results.
- An ability to focus effort on process effectiveness and efficiency.
- An increase in the confidence of customers and other interested parties as to the consistent performance of the organization.
- Transparency of operations within the organization.
- Lower costs and shorter cycle times through effective and efficient use of resources.
- Improved, consistent and predictable results.
- The identification of opportunities for focused and prioritized improvement initiatives.
- The encouragement and involvement of people, and the clarification of their responsibilities.
- The elimination of barriers between different functional units and the unification of their focus to the objectives of the organization.
- Improved management of process interfaces.
Only by identifying, defining and measuring processes at this level can you begin improving them.
Processes are happening everywhere in your company, in fact, there is nothing happening in your company that is not a process. Some are easy to identify, others may be less obvious. When identifying processes, is it important to remember that every process has the following:
- Inputs - an input is what is needed for the given process to begin. The output from the previous process in the process map is the input for the given process.
- An Owner - the person, or group of people (department), who performs and have control of the process.
- A Core Activity - the main action of what is being accomplished by the process. The change that occurs from this activity adds value to the input and creates an output that is more useful and effective downstream.
- Output - an output is the end result of the process. Every output becomes an input to another process.
If you haven't done so already, as a part of your TQT implementation you will need to identify all of the processes in your operation, and define them (department, production time, turnaround time, price model, selling price, cost, etc.). You probably already have an electronic list of 90% of them, and we have created, as part of our standard implementation plan, a simplified process mapping method with tools, instructions and guidance to help you build your "process list".