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What About The Total Time?

If you have read some of Dr. Deming's ideas about total cost you will be familiar with the idea that the idea of the cheapest supplier often hides other costs (re-work, transport etc...).

In a process the same can be said of time. If you want to find the quickest way to complete a process then you need to educate your team to look for the total time. Sometimes the fastest way of completing a specific step can cause problems elsewhere in the process. Likewise a slower looking idea can save a lot of time elsewhere.

By reviewing the process from end to end you can find better solutions than when you look at elements in isolation.

Next time you are reviewing specific parts of your process try to keep them in the context of your overall process and look to make the biggest overall process improvement.

Giles Johnston
Author of 'Business Process Re-Engineering', a practical plan to improve business performance.