1. Global survey report on informal benchmarking

    December 11, 2014 by ahmed

     Alan Samuel, PhD Researcher

    The findings show that ”informally learning from others to improve work practices” (also known as Informal Benchmarking) is a promising approach with great potential in improving work practices or processes. The most effective informal benchmarking tools are from the social dimension where learning of work practices are taking place by interacting with others within or outside the organization. Click here for the full report, and here for the survey.

    The next phase of my research is a more in-depth study of informal benchmarking via interviews. This will add rigour to my theory of informal benchmarking and help me create a road-map for its effective implementation in organizations.

    My deepest appreciation to all who have participated in my survey on informal benchmarking. I look forward to possible collaboration with you in the future. Some of you who have indicated interest in participating further in this research may be contacted for my next phase of study.
    If you would like to participate in my research in some way or do have any clarifications, please contact me at alansamuelnow@gmail.com, or my NZ Mobile: +64220704436.

    Thank you very much!

    Alan Samuel
    PhD Researcher
    Centre for Organization Excellence Research (COER)
    Massey University, New Zealand
    Member, New Zealand Organization for Quality (NZOQ)
    Organization Development Consultant
    Mobile: +64220704436
    www.linkedin.com/in/alansamuelnewzealandsingapore


  2. Participate in a survey on Learning Informally to Improve Work Practices by 30 September

    August 26, 2014 by ahmed

     

    gbn_logo      coer_logo

    Hi there!

    I’m Alan Samuel, a PhD researcher from the Centre for Organizational Excellence Research, Massey University, undertaking a fascinating project on learning to improve work practices by learning informally from others. The purpose of my survey is to understand how organizations around the world informally learn (apart from formal training or courses) better practices and implement or adapt them to increase the effectiveness of their own organization.

    If you have an interest in seeking an alternative cost-effective way of business improvement, this survey is for you. I am pretty sure this survey will stimulate your thinking in a vastly untapped area of your workplace learning capacity. The results of the survey will certainly be of benefit to you as well. In addition, you will get one month of access to the Business Performance Improvement Resources website (www.BPIR.comabsolutely free upon completion of this survey!

    At the bottom of this page is a link to the user-friendly online survey. Your responses will be kept completely confidential and your name will not be reported in any of our results. You should be able to complete the survey within 30 minutes or less.

    I really appreciate your willingness to participate in this global survey and will extend a copy of the results to you. The survey will be open till 30 September 2014.

    This project is part of a research in the Centre for Organizational Excellence Research (COER), Massey University, New Zealand. The project is also supported by the Global Benchmarking Network (GBN).

    If you have any questions or for further information on the survey, please contact me, Alan Samuel at alansamuelnow@gmail.com, NZ Mobile: +64220704436.

    Link to survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/InformalLearnPractice2014

    Thank you very much for your participation!

    Contact:
    Alan Samuel

    PhD Researcher, Centre for Organizational Excellence Research
    School of Engineering and Advanced Technology, Massey University
    Private Bag 11222, Palmerston North, New Zealand
    Email: alansamuelnow@gmail.com, Mobile: +64 220704436

    Profile:
    Alan Samuel is a PhD researcher at the Centre for Organisational Excellence Research, Massey University New Zealand, www.coer.org.nz, He served in the Singapore Police Force as a directorate member in charge of organizational development and performance management. He was part of the team (Communications and Knowledge Management) responsible for the Singapore Police Force’s attainment of the Singapore Quality Award (SQA) with special commendation. He is a member of the New Zealand Organization for Quality (NZOQ).


  3. COER’s Productivity and Business Excellence Research

    June 15, 2014 by ahmed

    The importance of raising productivity, achieving greater outputs as a proportion of inputs, for wealth creation is well understood. The challenge is how to achieve this whether it is on a personal, organizational, or country level.  The Centre for Organisational Excellence Research (COER), founders of the BPIR.com, are grappling with this challenge and providing solutions through its research programmes and activities.

    Dr Robin Mann, Head of COER, is the Chief Expert for a major project with the Asian Productivity Organisation (APO) to review productivity initiatives in 20 Asian economies so that more effective Asian-wide and National strategies and services for productivity improvement can be provided. The coordination meeting for this project was held in Tokyo, 27/28 May, where time was spent developing the research tools. The next step is for National Experts representing each country to collect data from their various stakeholders; funders, partners, staff and clients. Early results from the research are expected at the end of August, with the final report published in March 2015.  From an academic perspective this project is important as access is being given to data that is not normally available for research purposes and as such a number of journal papers have been targeted for publication.

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    Dr Mann (centre) with the Secretary General of the APO and the National Experts from member countries

    This year, Dr Mann is involved in a number of APO projects including:

    • Advising the Philippines on their National Business Excellence Strategy for the public sector (therefore recommending services to help the public sector to become more accountable and efficient) and providing benchmarking training to its key institutions.
    • A conference on business excellence in Pakistan (2-5 September)
    • A business excellence week for the public sector for all APO members in Singapore (27-31 October) to coincide with SPRING Singapore’s Global Business Excellence Conference.

    COER are also the organisers of the International Best Practice Competition, www.bestpracticecompetition.com, and Global Benchmarking Award, www.globalbenchmarkingaward.com, which are both supported by many APO members. The 3rd International Best Practice Competition will be held in conjunction with the Abu Dhabi Chamber of Commerce on the 25 November. The event is like a talent contestant but in this case organisations need to share a specific best practice within an 8 minute presentation. In 2013, 36 entries were received from 10 countries, and the winner was the Immigration & Checkpoints Authority from Singapore.  The Global Benchmarking Award follows a similar process but recognizes those organisations that have developed an effective approach for benchmarking. The 3rd Global Benchmarking Award will be held in Florida, Orlanda, 3 to 4th December. The winner in 2013 was the Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA) in Dubai which is using benchmarking as a key method to improve the educational performance of private schools.

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    Photo 3 – Immigration & Checkpoints Authority receiving their award from Dr Robin Mann and Marc Amblard, CEO, EFQM
    Photo 4 – KHDA receiving the Global Benchmarking Award from the Global Benchmarking Network.

    COER’s international work also involves assisting with organizing a number of conferences including a Benchmarking Conference in Iran (11-12 October),  Business Excellence Conferences in Abu Dhabi (17-18 September) and Dubai (26/27 November), Benchmarking Conference in Abu Dhabi (21-25 September), and providing benchmarking training workshops in Bahrain, India, Malaysia,  New Zealand, Singapore and UAE.

    To disseminate the learning from COER’s activities it has developed the Business Performance Improvement Resource, www.BPIR.com. Recently over 100 videos of best practices were added. Some APO members provide access to the BPIR.com to organisations in their country to encourage productivity improvements. For example, SPRING Singapore provides access to the BPIR to over 500 of its business excellence certified companies.

    COER’s PhD students are contributing to the knowledge on productivity and business excellence. Alan Samuel is researching “Informal Benchmarking” – the way organisations learn from each other using an unstructured approach rather than through “Formal Benchmarking”. Informal Benchmarking is the most popular type of benchmarking and includes conversing with fellow workers to learn from their experience, networking with associates from other organizations, or simply researching a website to learn from better practices. Whilst this method is popular there has been little research on it as most research has focused on the more rigorous formal benchmarking. To participate in Alan’s research click here.

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    Alan Samuel presenting at the Global Business Excellence Conference in Singapore, 2013

    Another student Rubab Malik is studying high performing or fast improving schools and school systems around the world to identify how they learn and apply best practice. This research is of particular importance to New Zealand with its decline in educational performance of 15 year olds from 7th to 13th in reading, 7th to 18th in science and from 13th to 23rd in maths (according to the respected PISA assessment).

    For more information on COER, contact Dr Robin Mann, r.s.mann@massey.ac.nz or sign up to COER’s newsletter at http://www.coer.org.nz/share/free-newsletter.


  4. The Sponsor as the face of organisational change

    November 25, 2013 by nick.halley

    A large proportion of projects are not given enough executive level attention. Due to this, a large number of projects ultimately fail, as they move further and further away from the business’ core competencies, and strategic alignment between business and project breaks down. In order to overcome this, effective organizations recognize project sponsorship as a key part in any project. It is very important to have active sponsors who support change. Sponsors establish direction for the future, communicate through vision, and forge aligned, high performance teams.

    Dr. H. James Harrington, CEO and Douglas Nelson of Harrington Associates, have written a white paper explaining further how an effective sponsor, who sits at an executive level, can help eliminate the barriers to change and ensure the rapid and effective implementation of project outcomes. Commissioned by the Project Management Institute (PMI), the white paper, outlines characteristics and skills of a strong sponsor, including; power, sense of urgency, vision, public role, private role, and leverage. It includes a small but effective tool for assessing the suitability of a person for a sponsor role.

    The following statement from Managing Change in Organizations: A Practice Guide (PMI, 2013b) provides the foundational concept for this whitepaper.

    “A sponsor provides resources required for change and has the ultimate responsibility for the program or project, building commitment for the change particularly at the senior management level across the organization. Direct responsibility and accountability for the change needs to be clearly defined and accepted at an appropriately high level within an organization. Consequently, the sponsor for a change effort should be someone who has sufficient authority, influence, power, enthusiasm, and time to ensure that any conflicts that could impede the change are resolved in a timely and appropriate fashion.”

    Read the white paper HERE hosted by PMI.


  5. How to get $820 for each $1 spent using a Business Excellence Programme

    February 8, 2012 by admin
    One of the repeated questions in quality management is, what is the cost of quality? is quality free?
    Well, my personal opinion is, it is and it is not. According to quality guru Philip Crosby “Quality is free. But it is not a gift”

    In other words, the organisation needs to “pay” for establishing a quality system in order to get the rewards, it’s like paying for someone to fix the leaks in a system.

    Therefore, with any  improvement initiative there will be some cost associated with the programme but at the end the organisation should gain much more than what they have paid.

    In Dec 2011, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) published the results of a research study aimed to evaluate the net social benefits of the Baldrige Performance Excellence Programme.

    The researchers compared the benefits received by the 273 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award applicants from 2007 to 2010 with the cost of operating the Baldrige Program.

    According to the research, the benefit-to-cost ratio of Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award is 820-to-1, which means for every $1 spent to implement the programme the economy will get $820 in form of social value, which is categorized into 3 categories:

    • The applicants’ cost savings from using the freely available Baldrige Criteria instead of a higher-priced alternative
    • Gains to U.S. consumers, who had greater satisfaction with higher-quality products
    • Gains to U.S. economy resources saved by using the Baldrige Criteria
    The researchers noted  that the benefit-to-cost ratio would be much higher  for the US economy but the research only focussed on the benefits stemming from the award applicants (in respect to the social costs of running the whole Baldrige programme). In reality, 1000’s more organisations will have benefited from the programme.

    You can read the full research from here.

    Ahmed
    BPIR.com