Organization through systemization is a noble achievement that definitely pays good dividends!
STAYING organized takes constant effort on the part of everyone in a business. Systematizing the process will markedly ensure the path to continual improvement.
It’s peaceful, being in a clean office, with no clutter around as you work. However, as the day progresses, and more work is done, the order of things tends to slip. Waste baskets fill up, as books, documents, pens and other items get strewn around here and there. Consequently, chaos takes over, little by little!
The merely “organized” office begins to break down!
Disorder happens in a similar way with business processes.
Example: Let’s say you decide to better-organize how you take in information to on-board a new customer. There are problems in your business; errors are happening. Subsequently, important customer information and specifications are not getting to all departments. It’s also not reaching necessary employees in order to fulfill your customers’ needs. So you develop a form/document with all the necessary fields to be filled in, hoping to ensure your staff is getting that detailed customer information and specifications. Great! Things improve, and you feel as if you’ve finally organized that process and things will work better going forward. You should feel good about this!
For a while, all seems to go well in that one area of customer service, until there’s another mistake on a customer’s order. You realize the in-take/on-boarding form you developed did not address that particular specification. The form didn’t have a field prompting someone to ask for that specification, which would have prevented the mistake from happening.
Okay, your process for client on-boarding is not perfect, but maybe it’s doable; like for a cluttered desk!
By Memory, By Rote, or By Design?
Now, if a diligent employee immediately finds the original on-boarding file and updates the document to address the unknown specification that caused the error, you can be sure that’s a person who really wants to maintain order in the business. A person like that, who is naturally organized, will do the work required to keep your business that way. They keep things in their head and seem to remember things that need to get done.
HOWEVER, what happens in most companies is: the in-take/on-boarding form will probably not be updated, and the errors will continue to happen. But, it’s still better than it used to be, right? At this point, to maintain order and address the mistake, management generally calls a meeting to ensure everyone’s on the same page.
POINT IS: Being organized, simply by keeping process improvements in some manager’s head will not sustain the continual improvement of processes. That will require well-planned systems.
What is being systematized?
Consider the in-take/on-boarding form mentioned above. If the company was systemized, what would have happened when the mistake was made is that a “System Buster” (or Non-conformance report) would have immediately been submitted to management via a system that is easily accessible for everyone in the company. The System Buster / Non-conformance report would state what the error was, who made the error, and recommendations for correcting the error going forward, etc. The administrator of the report would then determine the “root cause” with the team that was effected by the error.
Using the example mentioned earlier, it was determined that the “root cause” was that the in-take/on-boarding form did not prompt anyone to obtain a particular specification to ensure the job/project was done correctly. Therefore, to keep order, stay organized and improve that process, the in-take/on-boarding form must be updated.
The Difference between Organized and Systematized
In one case, the updating of the form was prompted by memory; in the other case, the update was prompted by a checklist system.
You may be thinking it’s just much easier and faster to update the Word document and get back to work. And I would say you’re right, if yours is a 1-3 person company.
But consider this… Imagine your company growing to 10, 15, 25, 50, 100 and more employees! Your best hopes are being fulfilled. But, errors and chaos multiply exponentially as you add employees to your business. Things will break down more often, and at an alarming rate.
You would think that if you had 5 employees and you doubled to 10, that mistakes and chaos would only double. But that is not the case.
There are those who have studied these factors and have determined that mistakes and chaos would multiply exponentially by 3 to 4 times, just by going from 5 to 10 employees. Now, imagine 25 or 100! We know this is true, because it happened to us!
Growth Requires Organization Through Systemization
If your goal is to grow your company, you should begin to organize through systemization. Think of it this way… McDonald’s is able to grow exponentially, due to their systems. Every McDonald’s franchisee operates with the same systems; it’s like rubber stamping a franchisee. Everyone is on the same page! They can just keep growing without all the chaos.
A great system for orientation of new employees is a must for any business. When all the processes that run your business are in an Operations Manual, you are then able to grow exponentially without all the chaos suffered by most businesses. When one location is totally systemized, you could open or buy a new location and rubber stamp your systems to the new location. That new location, and those employees, would hit the ground running!
That’s where System100™ comes in! This is what we do best… what we can do for your business!
Contact us! Let’s have a conversation about systematizing your business. 615-425-2652.