Continuous Improvement Metrics – That Matter the Most
Continuous Improvement is a process of making an ongoing improvement of products, services, and the system itself. The process can be incremental for overtime implementation or a breakthrough for immediate results. Continuous improvement works as a tool to maximize profit. It, however, is an “ALL Improvements” basis to reap the real benefits. Below we explore the factors that can help in measuring the impact of continuous improvement in an organization. These measures are known as Continuous Improvement Metrics and are helpful in making assessments and analyses.
The financial aspect is the easiest way to measure the impact of improvement. In other words, it is a comparison between the cost and benefit derived from the improvement process. Things are so simple that if the earning has increased, improvement is beneficial, but it needs a review if it is otherwise. The effort fails if its cost is more than the benefit.
A continuous improvement process seems to work if the quality of products and services has improved. Customers are concerned about quality. It is the most vital factor that brings the customer back. A returning satisfied customer is an asset for any business.
Quality, therefore, becomes the prime metric to assess the continuous improvement process. Improving quality is itself a continued process. Its impact sometimes is not measurable on a short-term basis. There is absolutely no doubt that the quality delivers.
“A penny saved is a penny earned” The same is true, with saving a single moment. The time saved is the time earned. Increasing the speed of production or service delivery means smartly satisfying your customer. The result is increased output and extra available time for attending to more customers. Saving time means avoiding overtime. It is a profit if speaking in financial terms.
The safety of customers and employees is the responsibility of an organization. Then, the scope of safety changes with the change in circumstances. Companies need a set of measures in routine, but in times of turmoil, the whole definition of safety changes altogether.
Safety does serve as a metric to measure the process of continuous change. Improving safety measures means a decrease in lawsuits and insurance costs and other financial claims. It has a direct impact on profitability.
Every business claim to deliver quality to convince its customer to come back. Returning customers develop a bond with the business called brand loyalty. It is not an isolated factor, but a combination of quality, timely delivery, and reasonable price of the product or service.
Creating brand loyalty among customers is the ultimate objective of any business. This factor rightly serves as a metric for an assessment of continuous improvement. Organizations making efforts of continuous improvement can only expect loyalty from their customers.
Only a few organizations have concerns about employee engagement and satisfaction. Companies working on a continuous improvement plan need to engage employees to keep them satisfied. A job description and company policies are vital areas to involve employees. The higher the level of satisfaction of an employee, the higher his productivity and work output. It counts towards the overall company-wide quality and efficiency.
Improving and upgrading technology is also an important factor in measuring continuous improvement. Technology up-gradation sometimes is a costly affair. The required results take a longer time to emerge, making it hard to measure the short-term effect of continuous improvement efforts.
Technology updating is a sure way to improve quality and efficiency. It also helps in reducing the workforce and controlling costs in the long run. The metric can provide a measurable difference in output for a continuous improvement analysis. Research can lead to the induction of some more metrics. The above is however sufficient to use as continuous improvement metrics to make a fair assessment.