Improving supply chain processes and activity steps through Process Mapping - Part 2

Dr Douglas Boateng.gifThis month, SmartProcurement editorial board member Dr. Douglas Boateng (FIoD, FCILT, FCMI, FIBC, FIOM), CEO of PanAvest International, presents the second part of his discussion on the application of process mapping to improve the performance of supply chain processes.

“There is the tendency for many organisations to quickly join any process improvement bandwagon hoping for a positive step change in respective processes and systems. The champions or coordinators of such initiatives often do so for a quick fix rather than a better understanding of the real issues and opportunities.

“Within one year of applying the process mapping concept, and some of the world-class practices gleaned from the various literature, the example organisation discussed in Part 1 is currently able to achieve same month lead-times for manufacture and delivery of an animal health product at one of its sites for the first time, while holding virtually no inventory on some product lines.

“Customer service performance based on the metrics defined by the customer is 98%, an increase of 50%, owed to a substantial reduction in incomplete orders and customer complaints on variables (e.g. quantity shipped) within the organisation’s control sitting on zero.

“With process reliability and improved customer service performance, the focus is now to consistently achieve and improve the demonstrated lead-times. The same process mapping concept is currently being extended to the other site’s products. In particular, within six months of applying this concept to a human health product, the following has been achieved:

• Standard quality operations lead time has been reduced by 2 days.
• On time shipment to a major customer is now 100%.
• Manufacturing cycle time is now at par with the average demonstrated lead times.
• Actual transit lead times to all major customers are now at par with the demonstrated lead time.

“The improvement to date has in fact exceeded what was expected. Gaining the approval to manufacture another product can partly be attributed to the continuous improvement efforts and accomplishments. With senior management’s support, individuals and teams on site are continuously questioning their processes and seeking ways to reduce or eliminate the associated non value adding activities.

Boateng Nov graph.jpg“For the successful application of process mapping, the following key, but simple, steps must be followed:

1) Alert management of the benefits that would be gained from process mapping and illustrate these with current successful projects within and outside of the organisation.
2) Agree on a champion from senior management.
3) Activity mapping. Identify the core process for each system, whether external or internal to the organisation, carry out an activity mapping exercise to identify process steps in each core process, and link all core processes in a linear fashion.
4) Encourage the formation of cross functional teams to oversee the initiative and appoint a cross functional team coordinator. The team should include process custodians.
5) Encourage members to form cross functional task teams and introduce the task teams to the process mapping concept through an example.
6) Allocation of time. Adopt one unit of measurement across the%2


 

 

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