Benchmarking DOs and DON’Ts

by Erin McCune on May 12, 2008

in Management, Project Management, Strategy, Technology

Benchmarking is a critical first step in identifying opportunities for process improvement. Used correctly, benchmarking allows companies to compare their processes versus the best practices in their industry and develop a road map of how to adopt best practices within their own organization.

Mark Brousseau at the TAWPI Blog compiled a list of Benchmarking DOs and DON"Ts based on discussions at the recent TAWPI Payments Conference (I live blogged the event – coverage here) and the Supply Chain Leadership Forum:

The Top 5 DOs:

  1. Do align with key stakeholders.
  2. Do succinctly summarize benefits for top management.
  3. Do reduce your scope to actionable items.
  4. Do maintain perspective of both your business and cultural model.
  5. Do test multiple options before drawing conclusions.

The Top 5 DON'Ts:

  1. Don’t use competitors that match up poorly with your processes.
  2. Don’t ignore your competition.
  3. Don’t use the “boil the ocean” approach (focus, focus, focus).
  4. Don’t use benchmarking and data analysis tools without understanding how they work.
  5. Don’t work in a vacuum and think your organization knows it all.

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