Skip to main content

Growing your business through on time delivery performance

Everyone expects products and services to be delivered on time. It’s a basic ‘satisfier’ in any business transaction or project. So, why would I be writing about this as a strategy to grow a business?

The world changes quickly (I’m sure that you have noticed!) and with these changes comes new problems to overcome. Customers change their buying habits, new products and services add complexity to the organisation of the delivery and production side of your business. Expectations are increased through the ongoing proliferation of e-commerce and on demand services. So, although on time delivery is expected it is not always experienced.

There are so many unknowns in day to day business, that getting let down with deliveries is something that most other businesses want to avoid. Becoming a supplier of choice, because of your superb reliability in keeping your promises (the right product / service in the right place at the right time), can help you to win more business. People want to work with businesses that can keep their promises.

If you want to improve your own business’ on time delivery performance, and want to position yourselves as the ‘go to’ people in your industry, consider the following:
  • Find the delays in your business and figure out how to eliminate the pauses that are present in your business process. Many times these delays can take the form of meetings to make decisions, poor organisation of workloads and a lack of coordination between internal departments. Find these delays and remove them.
  • Make a list of all the obstacles you know there are in the business that stop your clients from getting a Class ‘A’ service. There will be things that niggle you that you will know must be a problem for your customers. If you get direct feedback from your customers about these issues then this is an opportunity to take advantage of the information. Figure out ways to make it as easy as possible for your customers to work with you.
  • Look at your business and spot the triggers that lie within your business. How do orders get started? How do your staff know how to undertake certain actions that convert your customers’ needs into paid invoices? Being clear about these triggers and making sure that they happen without failure can make a huge difference to the consistency of your business’ on time delivery performance.
  • Create an action list and get started with making the changes you have identified to your business. Without action you will only have ideas on how to improve your business; it's the results that count.

Becoming the best supplier in your industry can be a really effective strategy to grow your business through repeat and expanded sales. Hopefully you have now found a way to look at your business that will allow you to improve how you deliver your products and services on time and reap the rewards of increased sales and higher profits.
$37 - instant download

If you aren't quite sure how to take these ideas forward and want to have a more structured (and rapid) approach to improving the on time delivery performance of your business then check out my 'On Time Delivery Kit', which you can learn more about here. In essence it is a ready to use management approach to help businesses improve how they deliver their products and services on time.

Good luck with your improvements,

Giles


About the author
Giles Johnston is a Chartered Engineer who specialises in helping businesses to grow and improve through better business processes.
Giles is also the author of Business Process Re-Engineering and creator of the 'Making It Happen' continuous improvement strategies course.

Popular posts from this blog

Where there is a (performance) gap there is a concern

I had a really good day yesterday working with a client's team.

The team has issues. Plenty of issues. Some are managerial issues, some are people issues and some are production issues.

When I first met the team they didn't know what to do with their issues, so I started by helping them to see more issues.

Issues everywhere, they didn't seem very impressed.

And then we captured the issues as 'concerns' into the tried and tested 'concern cause countermeasure' format and followed the process:

Concerns probed for root causes and root causes converted into countermeasures.
Soon they realised that some of their root causes dealt with numerous concerns and they gained momentum.

Yesterday we pulled another one of their processes apart and identified all of the gaps. The gaps became concerns and we fed them back into the process. Now they have a practical action plan (of countermeasures) to upgrade the process in question.

What do you do with your performance gaps? …

Continuous Improvement and the Five Legged Race

Many improvement projects need the buy in of several people before they can progress. Amongst these people there will be some that have a firm view of what needs to happen and are keen to make progress. Some of the people won't be sure and they will need more time. Other people might not be that interested and have other priorities they want to focus on.

None of this is wrong.

It is an observation of mine and one that I see repeat on a regular basis with the businesses that I come into contact with.

But, if we take the principle from the observation we have an interesting improvement strategy (one that I personally use when I get stuck with my client's improvement projects).

You might have worked out the approach from the title of this blog post, but it is analogous to a three-legged race (or four, five, nine...). If someone in the group moves in the wrong direction and / or at the wrong speed then the whole group falls over.


In the example I gave at the start it is no differe…

Do you have time to prepare (in order to become super productive)?

I had a funny conversation a few weeks ago with a team that was complaining about one of their colleagues spending 'ages' preparing their workstation within their factory. I meet a lot of people that spend too long preparing (and effectively procrastinating) so I was intrigued by their comment. It turns out that this individual didn't spend too long but rather his colleagues dived into their work without thinking through what the best way to work was...

The slower to start gentleman did in fact prepare his work area. He was also able to produce a far greater amount of work in the same time period because he had invested in a smarter way of working than his counterparts. The time spent preparing his working area was valuable and not overdone.

This example reminds us of the importance of the second S in 5S (set in order) and how workstation design is critical if we want to maximise the productivity of our teams. Whether this is a physical work area in a factory, the filing s…