You've probably heard the old saw, "Plan your work and work your plan." Sounds good – but wouldn't it be better if you communicated your plan, too?
To see how these concepts played out in our project for this client, please visit Improving Warehouse and Shipping Efficiency Through Web-Based Scheduling Application.
Here's an all-too-common scenario. On the front end of the sales process, the seller's representative – who could be a sales rep, a customer service rep, or a helpful person who happened to greet the prospect – understands the prospect's needs and timeline, yet doesn't document key dates. Or maybe the representative did document key dates, yet the next person in the process doesn't see them and calls the representative – or, worse still, the customer – to find these. And then when it's time to schedule installation of the customer's order, the scheduler has to call the two preceding persons to see whether anything has changed about the dates.
Such is a day in the life when processes are ad hoc and powered by spreadsheets. Confusion and inefficiencies abound, because spreadsheets allow LOTS of "options" for data entry, and this translates into "missing" or "inconsistent" information.
Now, imagine you're a warehouse manager tasked with scheduling deliveries for products, and having to coordinate delivery dates with scheduled installation dates – which have been set by a separate person. Things get hairy, fast.
This month's case study illustrates how we helped a client not only better plan the work and work the plan – we also helped them better communicate both the planning and the doing, too.
If you recognize yourself or your company in the situations I've described, please contact me – we're very good at improving coordination, collaboration, and communication within companies just like yours.
Todd L. Herman