Finding hidden cost saving opportunities Part II
Following on from his article on hidden costs, Brian Plowman looks at unanticipated interfacing activities within an organisation.
by Brian Plowman
A member of staff requires a piece of equipment. The anticipated interfacing activities include: receive requisition then locate and issue equipment. The unanticipated interfacing activities include having to compensate for the equipment being shown as ‘instock’ when clearly it is still out somewhere.
So the quick fix is to phone the member of staff to see if an alternative will do and if not there is a need to start a search of the many locations where such equipment can be used. As well as all the extra work, the impression given to staff is that most of the organisation doesn’t fully understand its own processes or the importance of adhering to them!
In this case, a phone call to ask the Equipment Stores Manager to fix the problem with a better tracking system elicited an all too common answer – that the Department would get on to it as soon as they could and of course the workaround practice became the routine. This demonstrably happens time after time.
Look out for more examples of where you might find unanticipated interfacing activities within an organisation coming next week.