BizWize Philosophy to Business Improvement

The strength of the BizWize approach lies in their “Rookie Smart” attitude to solving problems. This allows the BizWize team to look at the problem with a “different set of eyes” and ask the simple/obvious questions that are often overlooked by those too close to the detail. For example, a BizWize consultant from a teaching background (high school teacher) was instrumental in solving a financial reconciliation problem within a large financial institution. BizWize improvement consultants don’t pretend to know the answer at the outset, but devote themselves to gaining a thorough understanding of the business environment, problem and underlying root-cause. Their fresh mind-set then allows them to
philosophy-bizwize
The BizWize team may follow a “Rookie Smart” approach, but this does not mean they lack experience, skill or consulting background when tackling a problem. Instead they leverage their diverse experience and skill-sets across the broader team to achieve optimal result for the client. This experience extends to Financial, Aviation, Manufacturing, Motor, Academic, Engineering, Pharmaceutical, Project Management industries varying in size from large corporates to start-up firms (such as BizWize itself). And, across multiple cultures and countries not limited to South Africa, but also the United Kingdom and throughout the African continent (Zimbabwe, Uganda, Tanzania, Namibia, Botswana, Swaziland, Ghana, Kenya, Mozambique, Angola and Zambia).

BizWize consultants are more than capable and comfortable of delivering improvement projects with the use of complex methodology sets (list mentioned above), they default to a simplistic approach that leverages a fit-for-purpose based on client need, size, budget and timeframe. The approach is geared to delivering as much value to the client within the shortest time possible. This is done through a thorough understanding of the problem and specific focus on “the things that matter…” For example, within the Financial services industry 1 out of 25 Steps (4%) cause 50% of the defects. The aim is to swiftly identify that one step, thoroughly understand it (context, input, output, root cause, etc.) and focus the solution accordingly.

Time is money. The Consulting team at BizWize are more than aware of this. As a result, the approach is to always deliver a minimal viable product (MVP). While this may not be the entire end-to-end solution, it will enable the client to start feeling a return on their investment in the short-term and build comfort until the end product is delivered. The team are continually on the lookout for quick wins.

Benefits of Using the Business Improvement Consulting Team

  • Highly skilled, individuals who are passionate about improvement and will acquire the additional skills or information requited to ensure a solution is implemented
  • Challenge the status quo to deliver innovative and practical solutions. The long-term objective is to always leave with a sustainable solution in place. Not just recommendations but consulting-bizwizesolutions
  • Time to market delivery of tactical solutions that significantly boosts client’s performance in the short-term;
  • whilst partnering with the client to deliver on their longer-term strategy.
  • An empowered team that leverage each other’s expertise, skill and experience to ensure delivery
  • The ability and willingness to communicate and interact with personnel at every level of the organization from executive to process executor. This provides an understanding and needs a client’s business at all levels of their organisation
  • Structured, but yet flexible project management style that ensures on time delivery in ever-changing business environments
  • Clear, concise and frequent communication in order to provide effective status updates and raise risks / issues timeously in order to ensure delivery
  • Clearly define the problem, the goal and determine the root cause of the problem to ensure that the underlying problem is effectively solved
  • Leverage strong consulting skills to build and design products that are customised to solve client specific problems

High-level Project Approach:

The process below is the general method as to how the BizWize team tackles business improvement projects. However, in the event a client has a specific request for a certain mythology or specific tool, the BizWize team will be more than happy to assist:

  1. Recognise and understand the problem / opportunity
    1. This is most probably the most important step in the process. This is where the “rookie smart” approach adds value in terms of gaining a thorough understanding of the client’s environment to ensure all future steps are aligned to address the problem
  2. Understand what is currently happening – As-is state
    1. This is done through observation and interviews. The output of this step is a visual depiction of the as-is state and may result in the production of process maps, context diagrams, schematics or value stream maps
  3. Understand current performance – Measure
    1. BizWize will assess what is currently available from the client and assess in filling in any “gaps”
    2. BizWize will determine if the data / measurements are reliable, repeatable and reproducible
    3. If required, a sample of the data will be extracted
    4. At this www BizWize will leverage their broader offering – the Data Analytics team – to determine what measurement capability can be built for the client (if required). This would include measuring all key aspects of a business from process performance, to financial analytics, to people performance, to client behaviour, operations analytics and social media / brand analytics. For further detail around this offering, please visit the Data Analytics section (link to Data Analytics)
  4. Identify what is causing the problem – Root cause analysis
    1. Based on the need of the client, this can be done via feedback, JAD sessions, or deep statistical analysis to quantify the effects of the potential root causes
  5. Identify and implement solutions to solve the problem
    1. Once again the BizWize will leverage their broader offering to determine if where applicable solution sets could assist the client. This could include:
      1. automation of process and removal of paper and email through the implementation of workflow – click here to see more about what is offered through workflow
      2. BPM (Business Process Management)
      3. Improving current Excel functions through macro’s and VBA code. Quite a nice simple, cost-effective and quick solution. Note: BizWize have built entire recon solutions using Excel.
      4. Simple applications using existing infrastructure such as VB.Net, SQL, SQL Server, Power Shell, Excel, etc.
  6. Note: BizWize have built an entire Account Opening application for a major corporate client through the implementation of these simple technologies. This removed the need for email and paper while providing line of sight (measurable). These technologies are relatively quick and cost-effective to deploy.

  7. Assess whether the solution worked – Re-measure
    1. Once a Data Reporting and Management Information (MI)/ Business Intelligence (BI) capability has been deployed, this will be easily performed and continually monitored
  8. Standardise the solution, so that the same output / service is delivered every time
    1. The implementation of a workflow solution will provide a structured platform to ensure the same process is adhered to.
    2. Coupled with a measurement / alert system to notify to ensure any significant deviations are proactively managed and rectified before defect occurs

Some Common Challenges Business’ Today Face:

challenge

  • Variation. Non-standard methods and tools may result in varying levels of service delivered to the client and inferior products that are not in line with the expected standard.
  • In-effective Decision-making. Key process steps and decisions are manual and leaves room for different interpretation and results.
  • Communication. The ability to effectively communicate with all stakeholders (internal/external) involved in the process is limited.
  • Process Management. Lack of timeous Management Information results in an inability for management to readily have sight of process issues, successes and overall state. This may result in management feeling as they are “flying blind.”
  • Data Analytics. Inability to measure and track trends over time such as, high volume complaints, fraud triggers, process yield, error rates, process performance (on-time), financial process controls, etc.
  • Visual Management. The capability of flagging any process exception / failure / risk is not available. This may not result in preventative action to eliminate an exception / failure / risk.
  • Tracking Capability. Auditability and Quality Assurance capability is also restricted.
  • Key Man Dependency (Knowledge Transfer). Business and process knowledge reside with specific individuals. Without a structured process and infrastructure, the business is at risk if these individuals leave the organisation, as this knowledge will leave with them
  • Roll through yield. The number of items that make it through a process without an error. The effect of compounding effect of errors in successive process steps on the output of the process. Please refer to schematic below.

six-sigma

Some Problem Solving Techniques:

  1. 5 Why Principle
    1. Explanation:
      1. The 5 WHY’s is a question-asking method. It is used to explore the cause/effect relationships underlying a particular problem. Ultimately, the goal of applying the 5 WHY’s method is to determine a root cause of a defect or problem.
    2. Example:
      1. Problem: Dissatisfied customer
      2. WHY? I did not receive my statement.
      3. WHY? Address not updated on system.
      4. WHY? Did not receive fax from customer.
      5. WHY? Fax machine not working.
      6. WHY? Fax machine not plugged in
  2. Line Balancing or Balancing the Line
    1. Explanation:
      1. Line balancing assists with reducing bottle-necks in a process (where work piles up (bottle-neck). The effects of bottlenecks (high work in progress) are stalls in production / delivery, supply overstock, pressure from customers, inability to identify where an items is in a process and low employee morale and high unit cost. This is in line with Little’s Law.
      2. Line balancing is the process of assigning tasks to workstations, so that workstations have. approximately equal time requirements. We use line balancing to minimize idle time, reduce work in progress (WIP), improve throughput and balance bottlenecks.
  3. line-balancing

  4. Spaghetti Diagram
    1. Explanation
      1. A spaghetti diagram is a visual representation using a continuous flow line tracing the path of an item or activity through a process
      2. This can be applied to both physical or electronic processes where work items move “unnecessarily.”
      3. This exercise will assist in removing unnecessary motion and prescribing the ideal flow of an item through the process

    spaghetti-diagram

Our Skills:

  • Process engineering / Industrial Engineering
  • Data / Statistical Analysis
  • Business Analysis handdrawn-lightbulb-512
  • VBA programming
  • Expert proficiency in Excel (Macro Developers)
  • Dashboard creation
  • Lean Six Sigma Black & Green Belt
  • Lean Six Sigma Yellow, Green & Black Belt Training (certified or non-certified)
  • Lean / Kaizen / Rapid Improvement Event Methodologies
  • Industrial Process Engineering
  • Financial Management
  • Managerial Accounting
  • Agile and SCRUM methodologies

Our Experience:

  1. Methodologies and Tools:
    1. Lean Six Sigma
    2. Rapid Improvement Events
    3. Target Operating Models
    4. TQM
    5. Agile
    6. Continuous Improvementexperience
    7. Kaizen
    8. Design of Experiments (DOE)
    9. Just-in-Time
    10. Root-cause analysis
    11. BPM Business Process Management
    12. Business Process Modelling
    13. Poka-Yoke
    14. Value Stream Mapping
    15. Process Manufacturing
  2. Industries
    1. Financial
    2. Aviation
    3. Manufacturing
    4. Motor
    5. Academic
    6. Engineering
    7. Pharmaceutical
    8. Project Management
    9. Varying sizes of businesses from start-up to large corporates