Road to innovation through the PDCA cycle
Organizations are more aware of the relevance of the information that circulates during the company performance. Therefore, the information is considered one more asset, pursuing to improve the efficiency in the management of it. This is the goal of what is known as Enterprise Information Management #EIM
My first studies within the industrial organization, allowed me to know some methodologies aimed at the improvement of manufacturing processes. Philosophies such as the JIT “Just in time”, which allowed TOYOTA to build vehicles without waste, has allowed me to acquire some concepts, which today could perfectly apply to technological information management projects #EIM.
The way of approaching a layout design of the machines in a car manufacturing workshop is not very different, of diagramming some of the process with a BPM application for an insurance company.
Then I give you some references to the most important philosophies of the 50s and used the Japanese company to gain competitiveness, against the almighty American industry.
One of the tools that best results has given me when dealing with projects associated to information management, is the PDCA cycle or Deming cycle (Shewhart). In summary, the methodology consists of planning the project and the results to obtain “PLAN”, execute the project as planned “DO”, check the results “CHECK” and implement the necessary actions to undertake a new project “ACT”.
The exercise described above could be applied to any activity, from the programming of a function to cover a required functionality, the design of a web page, to a complex integration of applications.
I recommend reading the story of William Edwards Deming to understand the real need in terms of improving processes:
My personal vision of Deming Cycle
I am going to tell you how much of my professional career in terms of information management # EIM could fit perfectly, with this interesting circle.
One of my first projects within the consultancy sector was to build some documentary processes for an engineering company. My experience was mainly within the “DO” phase and from a different perspective than the engineering company had. Later, I was able to participate in other phases, checking the results obtained “CHECK” and implementing new improvements “ACT”.
As time goes I had the opportunity to work directly from the engineering company and start new projects from the planning phase “PLAN” and incorporating the lessons learned during my stage as consultant. Understanding consultant and client difficulties upon undertaking the different phases, has allowed me to make more efficient each project, each cycle, achieving higher quality results and reaching innovation.
I remember the moment in which we replace the approval traditional system of documents by engineers on site, by a new mobility application. Everything was working correctly and we reached the defined objectives, but in one of the latest versions, a new need was detected, which stopped making the process efficient. The technicians waited to arrive at their offices to scan the signed documents, attach the photos they already got on their mobiles and upload everything to the document management system, where they proceeded to the approval. Thanks to the good work in the “Check” phase, collecting their suggestions through a mailbox and analyzing possible improvements, an important innovation could be addressed within the organization. Communications had improved in many of works in progress, mobile terminals had better resolutions, so it was time to tackle the documental mobility challenge.
Recently, I decided to leave the engineering company and go back to consulting sector. I choosed CIM because offers me the necessary flexibility, which together with the training and experience of its employees, allows me to grow and improve seeking that important leap, which is innovation.
As you can see, I have turned the PDCA tool into philosophy and without being able to be otherwise, I have used it to write this article, being this one, planned, written and reviewed a couple of times, before being published, with the purpose of that you It has been of interest.
ECM Senior Consultant