The best thing you can do for process improvement: Just get started!

The best thing you can do for process improvement: Just get started!

At Avanto, we work with a lot of dealers on process improvement.

They bring us in because they know they could be doing better but they’re too close to the problem. The initial conversation could be about virtually any aspect of their operations—from order entry and acknowledgements to accounts payables and receivables, sales management and more.

Usually when we start talking, I find the dealer is ready, albeit with widely varying degrees of enthusiasm, for what they expect will be a major project involving multi-departmental committees and endless meetings. They’re basically resigned to all that as inevitable if they’re going to see any kind of meaningful process improvement.

From a consultant’s point of view, that kind of thinking has wonderful implications for billable hours but in spite of that, I have to tell them their expectations are just plain wrong!

Here’s a not so dirty little secret about process improvement: It’s not rocket science. It doesn’t happen because a bunch of people spend hours sitting around a conference table or because some hero at the dealership steps up to the plate and hits it out of the ballpark. It’s not about instant, game-changing home runs; it’s all about singles and it takes place over time.

Case in point: a leading Allsteel dealer that we worked with on how they were processing transactions. When we started with them, they told us as many as 25% of their total transactions had an error of some kind.

By the time we were finished, that 25% error rate—which was costing them a small fortune in essentially non-productive labor—was down to less than 5%!

How did they do it?

It wasn’t with a big committee and hours and hours of meetings. As much as anything else, it was about just getting started.

Working together, we put in place a system to automatically and without any human intervention track what has happening with their transactions. We identified what was going wrong and why and we fixed it. And after making the changes, we waited for a bit, looked at their transactions again, identified what was still going wrong and fixed that too.

And over time, we kept repeating that process of automated tracking, analysis and correction until the initial 25% error rate was down to just 5%.

To repeat: It didn’t involve a lot of people or time spent in meetings. It definitely didn’t involve team members themselves manually tracking what was going and entering data (complete with their own errors!) into complex Excel spreadsheets.

What made it work was a system that automatically tracked activity and did so in a way that allowed us to identify the source of errors and point us towards possible solutions. And that system was easily repeatable so that it could generate a pattern of continuous improvement over time that eventually yielded the desired result.

It wasn’t rocket science. It wasn’t a huge, overwhelming project. It was just somebody at the dealership who people listened to who said, “Let’s just start.”

If you’re ready to start on a process improvement journey of your own, Avanto can help. Want to find out more?

Contact Avanto’s Matt Danyliw (PH: 860-400-6030; Email: mdanyliw@goavanto.com) or visit www.goavanto.com).

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We work with many different industries, helping them navigate the digital transformation process. Reach out to us and see how Avanto can save your company time and money.

Testimonials

See what our otherclients have to say about Avanto

A True Partner

Avanto has been a true partner by every definition of the word to Pivot since the outset of doing business with them two years ago. Avanto’s deep understanding of the subtle nuances associated with running a successful furniture dealership combined with Avanto’s connections with automation industry leaders brings a competitive edge to their solutions offering unmatched by any RPA vendor in the marketplace.

Pivot – Herman Miller Dealership

D365

Go Avanto
2020-07-13T15:29:38+00:00

Pivot – Herman Miller Dealership

D365

Avanto has been a true partner by every definition of the word to Pivot since the outset of doing business with them two years ago. Avanto’s deep understanding of the subtle nuances associated with running a successful furniture dealership combined with Avanto’s connections with automation industry leaders brings a competitive edge to their solutions offering unmatched by any RPA vendor in the marketplace.

Successful Implementation & Programming

Avanto successfully helped Atmosphere Commercial Interiors by implementing and programming the software to process our vendor invoices. Contract furniture vendor invoices are complex with all the rules needed for freight, Tariff, tax, etc. Matt & Dan were able to work through all complex issues and provide a complete accurate product.

Atmosphere – Steelcase Dealership

Hedberg

Go Avanto
2020-07-13T15:43:56+00:00

Atmosphere – Steelcase Dealership

Hedberg

Avanto successfully helped Atmosphere Commercial Interiors by implementing and programming the software to process our vendor invoices. Contract furniture vendor invoices are complex with all the rules needed for freight, Tariff, tax, etc. Matt & Dan were able to work through all complex issues and provide a complete accurate product.

Responsive & Understanding

They are responsive, very understanding of our processes, and willing to work through the new invoice issues as they arise.

Jill Carlson, Senior Business Systems Analysis

Atmosphere Commercial Interiors

Go Avanto
2020-07-13T15:46:18+00:00

Jill Carlson, Senior Business Systems Analysis

Atmosphere Commercial Interiors

They are responsive, very understanding of our processes, and willing to work through the new invoice issues as they arise.

World Class Service

With Avanto’s industry expertise, back office processing experts and automation solutions we have dramatically reduced the time, effort and cost of processing the numerous transactions required to deliver world class service to our clients.

Mehmet Bakkaloglu, MSAT

CFO, Khameleon User

Go Avanto
2020-07-13T15:33:02+00:00

Mehmet Bakkaloglu, MSAT

CFO, Khameleon User

With Avanto’s industry expertise, back office processing experts and automation solutions we have dramatically reduced the time, effort and cost of processing the numerous transactions required to deliver world class service to our clients.
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