Wednesday, April 6, 2016

The power of the process

Ethan Darby,
Director of Business
Do mistakes happen often in your business? Are those mistakes preventable? Do certain tasks seem like they take longer than they should? At the end of the day, do you ever feel like nothing was accomplished? If you answered yes to any of these questions, you may want to take a step back and look at your processes.

At Trigard, we recently stepped back and took a good, long look at our own processes. And, I must admit, it can be very difficult to diagnose an issue with the way you do things, especially when you do those things every day.

The route that we took was called Value Stream Mapping, which can be conducted on any type of process, no matter if it is a manufacturing, administrative or service type of process. A Value Stream Map is basically a list of every step of your process, how long that step takes to complete, how accurate that step is, etc. It helps you to understand what steps are adding value that your customer is willing to pay for and which steps are a waste.

You have already seen some of our successes due to a recent Value Stream Map that we conducted on our bronze order process. Now, you are receiving proofs a lot quicker than before; and Customer Service can better track orders throughout our plant.

If you think your company would see some value in doing a Value Stream Map exercise with your staff, I highly encourage you to do it. For one, your staff knows the processes better than you do and they can provide you with solutions that they believe in. At Trigard, we cut our lead times in half and greatly decreased the number of mistakes we make. I encourage you to give it a try. We have seen the value, and we hope you do too.

This article originally appeared in Modern Memorialization, Trigard Memorials' weekly electronic newsletter featuring information for the funeral industry. Sign up for your free subscription at

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