Return On Process (ROP): Getting Real Performance Results from Process Improvement

Overview

Although there are countless books about process improvement and business performance, there is a dearth of literature on how process improvement yields business performance results. Filling this need, Return On Process (ROP): Getting Real Performance Results from Process Improvement provides strategic and tactical guidance on how to achieve a positive ROP.

The book details a comprehensive and coherent end-to-end process for integrating organizational performance objectives and ...

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Overview

Although there are countless books about process improvement and business performance, there is a dearth of literature on how process improvement yields business performance results. Filling this need, Return On Process (ROP): Getting Real Performance Results from Process Improvement provides strategic and tactical guidance on how to achieve a positive ROP.

The book details a comprehensive and coherent end-to-end process for integrating organizational performance objectives and measures to process improvement activities. Describing how to achieve real business performance results from process improvement, it supplies sound, proven advice on how to improve your organization’s software and systems development and delivery processes in ways that affect your business.

Defining the relationship between performance and process, the book presents metrics for business performance and explains how to set performance and process improvement goals, measure process improvement results, and lead a performance culture.

Filled with examples and case studies that illustrate key concepts, it provides "how to" information based on three role categories: executive, manager, and practitioner. Describing non-traditional and innovative ways to achieve process and performance improvement, the book includes action plan guides at the end of each chapter that provide clear-cut guidance on exactly what you should and shouldn’t do.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
Gone are the days of process improvement for efficiency sake. Process is a critical component of innovation and business growth. This book tells you not just how to improve, but more importantly where to improve. This is the key to maximizing your return on your process. Every process professional must read this book.
—Stephen Shapiro, Author, Best Practices Are Stupid

Trust Michael West not only to take on the subject most process improvement professionals seem afraid to raise, but to do so in such an enjoyable, practical, and easily digestible way. I thoroughly recommend reading the book from cover to cover, but once you have, you'll want to keep it close by because you will find yourself referring to it again and again. Nobody contemplating a process improvement program should proceed without first reading this book; but if you're already well on the way, I can only say 'watch out!', you might not like finding out what you've already missed!
—Rob Wyatt, IT Director, Product and Supply Chain, Dell

Michael West's insights completely rebuild and restore the long abandoned and decrepit bridge between investment in process improvement and the return on that investment . A must read for any business leader who wants his or her business to still exist in the near future!
—Marc Vandenplas, Executive Strategy Consultant

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781439886397
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 3/28/2013
  • Pages: 390
  • Sales rank: 723,557
  • Product dimensions: 6.40 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Michael West is a lifelong practitioner and student of process improvement. He is the co-founder of Natural Systems Process Improvement (Natural SPI), a consultancy specializing in designing, developing, and deploying process systems that enable performance improvement gains. Mr. West’s process insights and innovations have helped many organizations in various sectors of the economy achieve real process and performance improvement. His process consulting clients include ATK, Autodesk, AVL, BAE, BB&T, Crane Aerospace, DCS, Deloitte, Sandia National Labs, and the US Navy. Mr. West frequently presents and speaks at industry conferences and is the author of Real Process Improvement Using the CMMI (CRC Press, Boca Raton, Florida, 2004).

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Table of Contents

Real Performance Improvement
What Do You Think? What Do You Believe?
What Is Real Performance?
Case Study: Fast, Simple Technology Improvement
Case Study in Not Thinking Systemically
Learn What to Improve and Why
Determine What to Improve
Determine Why to Improve Something…and How Much to Improve
Case Study in Understanding What to Improve and Why
The Place for "Best Practices" in Performance Improvement
Establishing Performance Objectives
Framing the Challenge
Defining the Performance Objective Language
Getting to the Real Performance Objective
Using Criteria to Evaluate Performance Objective Statements
Establishing Performance Measures
The Measure of Success
What Gets Measured and Unintended Consequences
Context-Based Performance Measures
The Effect of Watching or Measuring
Case Study
Defining the Performance Measurement Language
Types of Measures
Defining Your Performance Measures
Focusing the Improvement: People, Process, and/or Technology
Planning and Managing the Performance and Process Improvement Project
The Most Important and Most Overlooked Measure: The Performance Baseline
Process Improvement Life Cycle
"Projectize" the Work
Initiate the Project (Inception)
Plan the Project
Develop the Solution
Transition the Solution
Putting It into Practice
Putting It into Practice: Defining Performance Objectives
Do’s and Don’ts
Do
Don’t
Reflect and Plan: What Did You Learn?
What Will You Do?
What?
Who?
When and How Much?
Endnotes

Real Process Improvement
What Do You Think? What Do You Believe?
Establishing Process Performance Objectives
A Story of an Unbalanced Scorecard
From the Strategy to the Performance Objective to the Process Performance Objective
Strategic Process Alignment
Performance Objective Process Alignment
Understanding Defined Process versus Performed Process
Improving the Performed Process
Accelerating Process Performance
Reducing Process Performance Tasks
Reducing Process Performance Lag or Wait States
Parallel Process Performance
Process Representation
Sentiment Can Ruin Efficiency
Improving Process Performance Efficacy
Improving Process Performance Output and Results Quality
Preventive Quality Process Improvement
Corrective Quality Process Improvement
Improving the Defined Process
The Process Is a Product
Build the Process for Its Users
Design the Process for the Way Users Work
Establish Process Design Standards
Provide Meaningful Process Tailoring
Tailoring Is a Process Performance Activity
Tailoring Is Based on Criteria and Rationale
Tailoring Criteria and Guidelines
Tailoring Guidelines
Design to the "-ilities"
Don’t Define Inconsequential Processes
Synchronizing the Defined and Performed Processes
Stage 1: Equalize the Defined Process with the Performed Process Example Modeling
Stage 2: Define the "To Be" Process
Stage 3: Perform the Defined Process
Stage 4: Institute Synchronization and Continuous Improvement
Using Defined–Performed Process Variance for Improving the Defined Process
Using Defined–Performed Process Variance for Improving the Performed Process
Continuous Improvement, Synchronization, and ROP
The CMMI and Process Improvement
Ways to Think about Best Practices
Where Improvement Begins in the CMMI
Putting It into Practice
Putting It into Practice: Defining Process Performance Objectives
Putting It into Practice: Improving the Defined Process
Putting It into Practice: Improving the Performed Process
Putting It into Practice: Synchronizing the Defined and Performed Process
Putting It into Practice: Measuring the Process Improvement
Putting It into Practice: Progress toward Higher CMMI Maturity Levels
Do’s and Don’ts
Do
Don’t
Reflect and Plan: What Did You Learn? What Will You Do?
What?
Who?
When and How Much?
Endnotes

Getting the Return on Process (ROP)
What Do You Think? What Do You Believe?
Measuring the Effects of Process Improvement on Performance
Changing Process and Measuring the Effects
Measuring the Performed Process Changes
Measuring Process Performance Speed
Measuring Process Performance Efficacy
Measuring Process Performance Output Quality
Measuring the Defined Process Changes
Making Claims of Performance Results from Process Improvement
Return on CMMI Use
Putting It into Practice
Putting It into Practice: Deriving the Return on Process
Putting It into Practice: ROP Efficiency Gains
Putting It into Practice: ROP Efficacy Gains
Putting It into Practice: ROP Output Quality Gains
Putting It into Practice: Progress toward Higher CMMI Maturity Levels
Do’s and Don’ts
Do
Don’t
Reflect and Plan: What Did You Learn?
What Will You Do?
What?
Who?
When and How Much?
Endnote

Small Changes, Big Performance Improvement
The Greatest ROP
Use 20 to Do 80
The Wrong Tool for the Work
Learning to Save
Make Meetings Work
More Meeting Efficiency and Efficacy Tips
Involve the Right People for the Right Work at the Right Time
When Expertise Isn’t Useful
More Ideas Don’t Produce Better Ideas
Aligning People with the Work
Learn One, Learn All
Lessons Learned Definitions
Lessons Learned on Lessons Learned
How People Learn and the Relative Cost of Learning
Lessons Learned Challenges
Tips for Establishing a Successful Lessons Learned Program
Recommended Approach
Conduct a Lessons Learned on Lessons Learned
Define and Promote the Lessons Learned Business Case
Develop a Model and Attributes for a Lesson Learned
Adapt Current Technology to Enable Lessons Learned
Establish Incentives for Participation
Monitor, Measure, and Publicize Progress and Success
Do Only What Needs to Be Done (and No More)
The Useful–Interesting Paradigm for Managing E-mail
Parsing E-mail Using the Interesting–Useful Dimensions
Parsing E-mail Using the Useful–Not Useful Dimension
Parsing E-mail Using the Interesting–Not Interesting Dimension
Using the Covey Quadrants to Manage E-mail
Additional Approaches for Managing E-mail
Broader Applicability of the Useful–Interesting Paradigm
The Right Amount of Analysis
Too Little Analysis
Too Much Analysis
Perpetual Analysis
The Right Amount of Analysis
Make Decisions Once and Make Good Decisions
A Brief History of Decision Making
The Importance of Structured Decisions
The Decision-Driven Organization
A Simple Decision Process
Increasing Decision Capability and ROP
Decision Making in the CMMI
Do Less to Do More
Activity Is Not Work
Assume It Already Exists and Don’t Reinvent It
Define Things Once
The Multitasking Myth
Endnotes

Improving Process Improvement
What Do You Think? What Do You Believe?
Where It All Goes Right (or Wrong)
Start with the Right Team
Process Improvement Project Stakeholders
Process Users
Executive Leadership and Senior Management
Business Development
Finance and Accounting (Cost Accounting)
Human Resources
Defining Stakeholders
Consultants
What Does Your Organization Need and Why?
Selecting a Consultant
Process Design and Development
What Is Process?
A Useful Model for Process
Process Representation
The Dynamic Process
The Smart Process
The Almost Perfect Process
Process Improvement Project Management
Scope
Learn to Say "No"
Learn to Say "Yes, and…"
Resources
Insufficient Resources
The Wrong Resources
Priorities
Schedule
Managing Stakeholders and Their Expectations
Reflect and Plan: What Did You Learn? What Will You Do?
What Are You Doing or about to Do? Why?
Who Is Involved?
Balance

Process and Performance Myths
Myth: Achieving Model or Standards Compliance Indicates Performance
Myth: If We Develop Good Procedures, We’ll Improve
Myth: If We Hire the Right People, We Don’t Need Processes
Myth: If We Just Implement the Right Tools, We Can Automate Things and Accelerate Our Business
Myth: We Need to Hire a Lead Appraiser to Improve Our Processes

Index

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