Quality Progress - May 2013 - 8

ExPERTANSWE Leveraging lean the customer experience? Q: I am looking for case studies on successful lean programs that give details on how to undertake a lean program at an IT metrics (financial, operational and customer • Can we do this while driving scale into the business? satisfaction), were deliberate about identifying root cause issues, and figured out the • Where do we put our best resources to products and services company, and how drive the most impact for our customers? organizations faced and overcame typical We laid out a value stream map of the smartest way to solve them with our front line. We conducted pilots and carefully mea- challenges. For example, how do you mea- business and identified some high-profile sured the results before full deployment. sure, in dollars or cost of sales, a bad senior pain points the organization could rally The best control plan we devised was to management decision? around. Out of those discussions, some get the front line engaged in the process up high-profile initiatives emerged that were front. After they bought into it, they would closely aligned with our strategic goals, enforce it—minimizing the need for formal objectives and key metrics: documentation and audits. Santosh Mishra New Westminster, British Columbia A: The best example I can provide in which • Becoming proactive in service man- Cbeyond employees took notice. We were an IT services company is leveraging lean agement to monitor and troubleshoot generating excitement. The projects demon- Six Sigma (LSS) process improvement prin- circuits. strated that achieving scale and customer ciples is at my own organization, Cbeyond • Redesigning the interactive voice recog- Communications. We are a $500 million IT nition platform to make it more custom- Following a process improvement method and communications service organization er-friendly and reduce transfer calls. made sense and could be successful. We providing voice, data and applications for • Introducing computer telephony integra- satisfaction were not mutually exclusive. didn’t even call it LSS. The method was small and mid-size businesses. We are fairly tion in the call center to provide immedi- becoming part of the culture. Employees first young (12 years old), fast-moving, have ate screen pops for agents to identify started speaking it; then they started practic- a highly entrepreneurial culture and are and validate the caller, and save 30 ing it—taking deliberate action. customer-centric. seconds in the process on 750,000 calls. Our LSS journey started in 2010 with our In essence, we were “pulling” for the The larger initiatives started a wave of smaller initiatives. We quit talking about is- key thought leaders from customer experi- creation of meaningful initiatives—not sues in terms of: “What is the trouble ticket ence, operations, IT and process excellence “pushing” projects through the organization. rate?” or “Why isn’t IT automating this for getting in a room and asking some difficult We set up teams, questions: created business • What is standing in our way of enhancing cases with key Project portfolio process Stage one Identify initial projects • Business alignment framework Business alignment framework / FIGURE 2 Goals / FIGURE 1 Stage two Stage three Prioritize projects Charter projects High potential areas Projects Stage four Validate projects Strategy • Strategic questions • Talk to customers • Identify key metrics and pain points Strategic (early in the cycle) • Project prioritization scorecard • Project charter template – Define problem High potential Project Project Project High potential Project Project – State the goal – Define the scope Tactical (later in the cycle) “Pulling” for the creation of projects that are aligned with our goals, strategies and metrics. EBITDA = earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization Source: Peter Sherman, “Pick Your Spots,” Quality Progress, September 2012, pp. 36-42. 8 QP • www.qualityprogress.com Source: Peter Sherman, “Pick Your Spots,” Quality Progress, September 2012, pp. 36-42. http://www.qualityprogress.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Quality Progress - May 2013

Up Front
LogOn
Expert Answers
Keeping Current
Mr. Pareto Head
Balancing Act
Avoiding an Avalanche
What Makes You Tick?
Mood Righting
Innovation Imperative
Quality in the First Person
Standards Outlook
Statistics Roundtable
Special Section: ASQ Enterprise and Site Members
3.4 per Million
Career Corner
Career Corner
QP Toolbox
QP Toolbox
QP Reviews
QP Reviews
One Good Idea
One Good Idea

Quality Progress - May 2013

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