Preview of Business Process Management and Continuous Improvement Executive Guide Series eBook 'How to Use Kaizen for Increased Profitability and Organizational Excellence' by Dr. Shruti Bhat
Improvements through Kaizen have a focus. Kaizen generates process-oriented thinking is people-oriented and is directed at people’s efforts. Rather than identifying employees as the ‘problem’, Kaizen emphasizes that the ‘process’ is the ‘target’ and employees can provide improvements by understanding how their joint fits into the process and changing it.
The essence of Kaizen is that, people that perform a certain task are most knowledgeable about that task; consequently, by involving them and showing confidence in their capabilities, ownership of the process is raised to its highest level. In addition, the team effort encourages innovation and change and by involving all layers of employees, the imaginary organizational walls disappear to make room for productive improvements. From such a perspective, Kaizen is not only an approach to manufacturing competitiveness, but also everybody’s business, because its premise is based on the concept that every person has an interest in improvement.
The roots of Kaizen reach back to the late 1940s, when Japan’s economy was still reeling from the second World War.
Kaizen principles have been viewed as one of the key factors to Japanese competitiveness. It begins with the admission that every organization has problems, which provide opportunities for change. It evolves around involving everyone in the organization and largely depends on cross-functional teams that can be empowered to challenge the status quo.
‘It is not necessary to change.
Survival is not mandatory.”
- W. Edwards Deming
Working with Deming and other consultants, Japanese industries created several new management approaches, one of which was Kaizen. Using these approaches, they were soon able to out-produce their counterparts in other industrial nations, and earn a reputation for quality and economy. Today, Japan is a world leader in auto and electronics manufacturing!
Kaizen techniques became famous when Toyota used them to rise to world’s automotive leadership. The company is credited as pioneer to formalize Kaizen technique and implement it as part of a global business plan. Rather than undertake large projects, Toyota’s staff was encouraged to identify problems, no matter how small, trace their root causes and implement all necessary solutions.
Over a single year, one of Toyota’s plants in the United States recorded over 75,000 suggestions from 7,000 employees, and reported implementing over 99% of those suggestions. Every implemented step had a positive effect on safety, efficiency, productivity, and/or reliability. While each step may have been small on its own, the total result was a drastic and long-lasting improvement in the company.
That’s the drive of Kaizen — many small steps, all in the right direction, continuing indefinitely.
Since Kaizen comes from the words, "Renew the heart and make it good." Therefore, adaptation of the Kaizen concept also requires changes in "the heart of the business", corporate culture and structure, since Kaizen enables companies to translate the corporate vision in every aspect of a company's operational practice.
Much of the focus in Kaizen is on reducing "waste" and this waste takes EIGHT forms:
End of sample chapter from the book. Enjoyed the preview?
Do check out the eBook !
How to use Kaizen for Increased Profitability and Organizational Excellence?
About the author:
Shruti Bhat, PhD (Tech.), MBA, Certified Lean Six Sigma Black Belt is Continuous Improvement mastermind for Pharmaceuticals & Medical Devices Industry. She is often called "Profitability expert' More about Shruti at http://www.shrutibhat.com/
Connect with Shruti:
Kaizen procedures evolved in the automobile industry. Therefore, most of Kaizen literature, publications, books, cite Kaizen implementation in factories such as Toyota, Ford, Mazda and the like. But work practices within pharmaceutical, medical device and biotech industry are different from the auto sector.
Regulations, customer demands, competitor landscape, product criteria, facility and environmental needs as well as employee skills within pharmaceutical (medical devices and biotech) companies are extremely stringent and totally different from the automobile industry. Therefore, ‘as is’ Kaizen practices from auto sector won’t work for pharmaceutical, medical device, and biotech organizations. Kaizen needs to be customized for these life science industries, to achieve its full benefits. So far, there has been no book on Kaizen that is customized for such industries.
For over a decade, the author, Dr. Shruti Bhat has successfully completed more than 250 Kaizen, Lean Six Sigma and other continuous improvement projects worldwide within pharmaceuticals NHP, medical devices, biotech and healthcare sectors, and felt it will be beneficial to share those techniques and experiences.
In addition to explaining all the general Kaizen process features, implementation, and application, this book also provides a structured approach to designing Kaizen strategies, practices and implementation for pharmaceutical, medical device and biotech companies.
This book will be most applicable to small to medium-size companies. It will demystify Kaizen and help business leaders in pharmaceutical, medical device, biotech and all life sciences organizations, irrespective of their size or workplace culture. It will also provide practical and useful examples and case studies of Kaizen principles that can be executed at various levels across the organization as well as for yourself as an individual to further your personal career. And last but not the least, it will help to improve revenues and create a lasting profitable change by using Kaizen principles and techniques.
Connect with Shruti:
Introduction- What is a business process?
One of the first person to describe business processes was Adam Smith (1776) in his famous example of a pin factory. Since then business processes have evolved and better defined. A business process defines the various activities involved in achieving a goal. Business processes briefly describe the chain of events that are involved in an activity or a group of activities. It is common to use a business process if the activities influence current products or data and bring about production.
Types of business processes include-
- Management processes such as Corporate governance, Strategic management, planning and implementation.
- Operational processes, which constitute the core business and create primary value stream. Typically, they include Procurement & sourcing, Manufacturing, Marketing, Sales and Customer service.
- Supporting processes, which support the operational processes and include Finance & Accounting, Recruitment & Human Resources Management, Research and Technical support.
Business processes are used practically in any organization and throughout an organization at any level. They are used in a variety of industries such as private, public sector, government, departments, hospitals, charities etc. Business processes are, typically outlined to improve an organization in an effective and efficient way.
Various computer software make it possible to create business processes on a computer, however simple business processes are just as effective when written with pen and paper. Some even find it better to jot down the processes on a piece of paper, or on several small ones, to kick start their creativity and thinking process. It is up to the professional (and/or organization) to decide whether a software or traditional method will work best for them. Business processes work best when there is input, support and ideas from various people that are involved in the organization (or department).
Key business processes are logically grouped related tasks and activities, independent of the organization’s structure, which utilize the resources of the organization to produce specific results. They possess measurable inputs & outputs, value addition and repeatable activity.
Tip- The effective management of key business process requires- Ownership & planning, performance metrics & control, process qualification, management and improvement methodology.
A business process always begins with a customer’s need and ends with a customer’s need fulfilment.
Customer needs change, technologies change, government policies change, competition changes and what used to be a high level of performance becomes a poor one and it’s time to replace the formerly good process with a new one- only every process cycle should have this capacity of identification, in-built in its charter.
As a practicing Business Transformation expert of many years, I am happy to mention here few case studies, nay success stories. Let me share three examples-
A consumer goods manufacturing company redesigned its product deployment process, by means of which, it now manufactures goods and delivers them to its distribution center such that inventory uptake was reduced by 35%, while stock-out goods situation declined by 70% ...
Connect with Shruti:
Nice video on how to grow your service based business-
For more such videos, subscribe to our YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCRM2zmQXT0gpn7-YbOQibLA
Pharmaceutical Manufacturing, Continuous Improvement and Business Transformation Consultant
New Release !
For additional details, refer our Terms & Conditions for site usage.
Books By Shruti Bhat
Business Process Improvement
Cancer Research Updates
Know Your Medicines