Achieving Transportation Excellence by Focusing on Daily Improvement
Part 2: MDI and Daily Tactical Processes
In part 1 of this blog post, we discussed how, in order to deliver on the commitments made during the sales and onboarding process, organizations and their transportation partners must align their daily efforts with meeting their overall goals and objectives. And developing an OGSM is the first step, but in order to be successful long-term – and achieve the desired results – organizations need to establish daily tactical processes and consistently monitor goals versus actual results.
One effective way to do this is through a process called Managing for Daily Improvement (MDI). MDI is a methodology in which leaders implement visual management strategies that are leveraged on a daily basis to drive continuous improvement at various levels of the organization.
A key tenet of MDI is that it is led by individual contributors (at the ground level) in a group setting, with an emphasis on self-managed, highly engaged teams holding each other accountable to improve their daily processes and performance. This approach fosters a sense of empowerment at the individual contributor level and increases morale when leadership supports their improvement efforts.
The MDI process requires 4 key elements:
- Standard Work: A formally defined and documented process to deliver a quality product or service on time. This includes documenting current best practices, creating standardized work forms and defining benchmarks or baselines. These baselines and standard operating procedures (SOPs) will create the foundation from which to measure future continuous improvement.
- Daily Accountability Process: Establishment of daily team standup meetings with rotating peer-led facilitation where actual results are measured against a goal/baseline and actions are documented in order to drive improvements.
- Visual Controls: A formal mechanism for displaying information in a highly visual manner to quickly indicate wins/losses on defined KPIs on a daily basis.
- Leadership Discipline: Perhaps the most critical element of the MDI process, company leaders must create the framework within which MDI will operate, but will have to trust their employees to drive it forward. Leaders must trust their employees to drive change while at the same time encouraging them to continue to evolve the MDI process in the form of revised metrics/targets, facilitation skills and thought leadership.
Working to Deliver on Promises from Day 1
In keeping with this approach and Transplace’s ongoing commitment to deliver on our promises to customers, we use MDI as a springboard to answering how processes can be improved – and we use OGSM to provide the structure for executing MDI with every customer, every day.
Because this process guides daily account management, it’s important to have a clearly defined plan and set of goals from day one of the “go-live” of any project – which is why OGSM starts the moment onboarding begins. The commitments made in the contract/statement of work provide the overall objectives; and then customers and their logistics provider can collaboratively define:
- Specific goals
- The strategies for achieving those goals
- The metrics in which those goals are measured
Additionally, examining the metrics and goals each day drives incremental improvement on the important metrics within the overall strategy. And by communicate those results and KPIs to the customer, logistics providers can quickly connect, visualize and share data in one seamless experience. This, in turn, allows operations teams on both sides to explore and analyze data for critical metrics, such as on-time pickup and delivery performance, tender acceptance, cost impact of first tender rejects, carrier scorecards and more.
Applying the OGSM process can help better standardize the approach to account management across all operations, and create a culture of accountability and visual management in order to drive improvement for our customers every day. Download our white paper to learn more.
What KPIs are you using to drive daily improvement?