FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ON LEAN ORGANISATION
Lean Six Sigma and Service - I know about Lean manufacturing from Toyota. How would you suggest I use Lean tools and Six Sigma in my Service business? I take telephone orders for Insurance.
Taking customer orders over the phone is an example of a transactional process.
a. Over-processing. Recording the information received in 2 separate locations.
b. Transportation. Hand-offs from the receiver to a second person to locate the customers’ files and records.
c. Motion. The customer is asked to retrieve information not to-hand at the start of the call from bank accounts or existing insurance details during the call.
d. Inventory. Orders are assembled into a batch so that each customer must wait longer than necessary for the Underwriters to be called about their particular enquiry or application.
e. Waiting. The next step may be a call to the under-writers. This is delayed by an hour to attend a staff meeting on relocation.
f. Defect. The customer’s phone number or e-mail address has been entered wrongly with no back-up check, and the enquiry is stalled while a search is made for the number/address.
g. Over-production. The order is placed and an invoice arrives. The process is repeated by mistake by another operator, and a second invoice is sent out.
Reliable, high quality-every time processes lend themselves to reduction of inventory and using human resources where it is most needed rather than accommodating errors in a poorly designed system.
Lean and the Risk to Customers
Robust, dependable, reliable processes and equipment can be coupled together to take out wastes of motion, transportation, over-production and other forms.
Coupling unreliable processes reduces efficiency of the whole and leaves the business vulnerable to short-term variability by tempting managers to cash inventory in before the process can support it.
In a “World-class” manufacturer they coupled 4 process lines together in one “customer flow”. The reason was reduction in manpower and inventory.
Process 2=85% efficient (overall equipment effectiveness)
Process 3=85% efficient (overall equipment effectiveness)
Process 4=40% efficient (overall equipment effectiveness)