1. Founder of BPIR.com is awarded the Harrington/Ishikawa Medal for 2011

    November 23, 2011 by
    Co-founder of BPIR.com Limited, Dr Robin Mann, was awarded the Harrington/Ishikawa Medal for 2011 at the Asian Pacific Quality Organisation’s Dinner in Singapore, 17 October. This award is given annually to an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to the advancement of quality in the Asia Pacific region.
    Harrington/Ishikawa Medal 2011
    Dr Robin Mann walking on stage to receive the Medal from Dr James Harrington. Also, representing the APQO were Shan Ruprai (Australia), Chuck Aubrey (United States), Dr Ahmad Mohd Magad (Singapore), and Dr Miflora Gatchalian (Philippines).

    The nominating committee for the Walter L. Hurd Foundation and the Asia Pacific Quality Organization (APQO) selected Dr Robin Mann to win the award.
    Robin’s achievements include:

    • Creating and leading the Centre for Organisational Excellence Research (COER) since 2001. The first research centre of its type in Australasia that focuses on business excellence and benchmarking. 
    • Undertaken many consultancy and research projects in the Asia-Pacific region including an Asian Productivity Organisation project to review the value and impact of business excellence in Asia. The project report can be accessed here.
    • Developed the first certification scheme for benchmarking and an innovative methodology for benchmarking, called TRADE Best Practice Benchmarking.
    • Co-founded the BPIR.com.
    • Increasing the profile of benchmarking worldwide through his role as chairman of the Global Benchmarking Network since 2006.

    Previous winners of this distinguished award include:

    • Armand V. Feigenbaum from USA
    • Lennart Sandholm from Europe
    • Yuanzhang Liu from China
    • Kondo Yoshio from Japan
    • Noriaki Kano from Japan
    • Charles Aubrey from USA
    • Professor Tang Xiaofen from China
    • Hesameddin Aref Kashfi from Iran
    Harrington/Ishikawa Medal for 2011
    Dr Robin Mann’s acceptance speech

    Ahmed Abbas

  2. Service Excellence Initiatives in Europe

    November 16, 2011 by


    Many counties have established frameworks to improve customer service. These are often called “Service Excellence Frameworks” and are usually derived from Business Excellence Frameworks such as Baldrige and EFQM.

    To achieve high levels of service excellence organisations need to focus on areas beyond customer delight and customer experience, areas such as service leadership and service planning.
    Research was  conducted by Jurgita Adomaityte to explore the penetration of Service Excellence initiatives in 34 European countries.

    In summary, the findings were:

    • 26 Service Excellence initiatives in 17 countries
    • 17 Countries with no Service Excellence initiative
    • 11 Service Excellence Awards in 9 countries
    • 10 initiatives were limited to certain sectors such as tourism and call centres

    To read the full results table click here.

    Ahmed Abbas

  3. Business Excellence Chile

    November 7, 2011 by
    Business Excellence Chile specialise in business excellence, benchmarking and strategic management consultancy, They are a member of the Global Benchmarking Network and BPIR’s partner in Chile. Their first English newsletter is published below. It includes an interview with Orlando Olivera the General Secretary of the National Quality Award.
    Business Excellence Chile
    Business Excellence Chile Newsletter, October 2011
    About Business Excellence Chile

    Business Excellence Chile supports all types of organizations in the systematic search of excellence. We developed a robust methodology based on the use of Business Excellence Frameworks (Baldrige, EFQM, CAF, Chilean, etc), Strategic Management (design, development, strategic support and use of the Balanced Scorecard) and Benchmarking (using the TRADE methodology from Dr. Robin Mann) dedicated to generate sustainable value over the time to our customers. 
    Continue reading…

    National Quality Award Ceremony
    On Monday June 20 at the "Bellas Artes" Museum, was presented the National Quality Award 2010 to the three organizations that this time, obtained this valuable prize that is given to the organizations that get a great performance in quality management and excellent services in Chile.

    Among the winners there is the Municipality of Providencia in the category "Public Organizations", Correos de Chile as "Best Large Company" and Wilug Ltd. under the category "SMEs". Continue reading … 

    Exclusive Interview to Orlando Olivera, General Secretary of the National Quality Award

    Nowadays Business Excellence Frameworks are a worldwide recognized tool for its wide applicability in various organizations, gaining significant international validation.

    There is agreement in all sectors that they contribute strongly to improving the competitiveness of countries; that have a formulation that allows an organization to be viewed systemically; that have an improvement methodology; and that contribute to the growth of countries.

    According to the opinion of the General Secretary of the National Quality Award, Orlando Olivera, "Therefore what we need is that universities, research centers, consultants, companies, business and trade associations start to collaborate on the dissemination of the principles of business excellence".

    So we see that what we have today is a very important valuation of these instruments capable to look integrally and systemically to organizations and guide them to excellence. See full interview…

    V International Seminar: "Search for Excellence in Local Governments"

    During August 29th and 30th, it took place the fifth version of the seminar: "Search for Excellence in Local Governments" organized by the Municipality of Providencia. The purpose was to generate a forum for reflection about the challenges of improving municipal management, with special emphasis on Business Excellence Frameworks and their application in national and international governments in order to adequately meet the specific local demands from neighbors and users of the municipalities from Chile.

    In this opportunity was attended by leading international professionals such as Dra Miflora Gatchalian and Drs Robin Mann and Yasir Alnaqbi, among others, who shared their experiences in implementing practices of excellence in their respective countries.
    Pictures and more…

    Newsletter nº 1

    This newsletter aims to give the latest trends in business excellence, benchmarking and strategic management in Chile. As well as to keep informed all of our stakeholders who want to improve their organization's performance through modern management tools.


  4. Singapore Business Excellence Awards 2011

    October 24, 2011 by

    Nine organisations have won the prestigious business excellence awards by Spring Singapore during the 3rd Business Excellence Global Conference.

    This year, the Singapore Quality Award (SQA) with Special Commendation was given to the Institute of Technical Education and Subordinate Courts of Singapore, both previous SQA winners.

    The SQA with Special Commendation is presented to past SQA winners who have done better since winning the award at least five years ago.

    With 9 winners of 2011 awards this year is largest number of winners since the award was presented in 1995.

    The 2011 winners are:

    Singapore Quality Award with Special Commendation:

    • Institute of Technical Education
    • Subordinate Courts of Singapore

    Singapore Quality Award:

    • Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore
    • Nanyang Polytechnic
    • National Library Board
    • Raffles Institution
    • Teckwah Industrial Corporation Ltd
    • Yokogawa Electric Asia Pte Ltd

    People Excellence Award

    • Maybank Singapore

    Click here to read the media press release

    Ahmed Abbas

  5. Project management – a necessity for business excellence

    October 18, 2011 by

    Projects are a way of transforming strategies into actions and objectives into reality. For this reason project management is an essential tool needed in all organisations. The right balance between project management elements can enable organisations to complete projects on time, on budget, and with high quality results. 

    According to Gartner Group projects worldwide cost their owners many millions of dollars more than were budget for, and surprisingly almost half don't meet their clients' expectations!

    The article below by Dr. James Harrington , one of the world’s leading thinkers on quality and business management, describes the elements of a successful project.


    By: H. James Harrington

    This post is the second in an ongoing series about organizational excellence, which consists of five elements. The first two are process management and project management.

    Processes define how organizations function, and projects are the means by which organizations improve those processes. We define a project as a temporary endeavor undertaken to create a unique product or service. For project management, we apply knowledge, skills, tools and technology to activities to meet or exceed stakeholders’ needs and project expectations.

    Although this seems straightforward enough, it can’t be so simple, or we’d see better results from the projects we fund. The Standish Group International reports that “corporate America spends more than $275 billion a year on application software development projects, many of which will fail due to lack of skilled project management.”

    “The average cycle time for IT projects is 27 weeks,” reports the Wall Street Journal. “The ones that are cancelled are cancelled after 14 weeks; at that point, they’re 52-percent complete. Many of the project teams know that the project is likely to fail six weeks before it’s cancelled.”

    Similarly, the Gartner Group reports that “in a four-year period, an application development organization of 100 developers can expect to spend more than $10 million on cancelled contracts.”

    Most organizations’ projects are mission-critical activities, and delivering quality products on time is nonnegotiable. Even with IT projects, things have changed. The old paradigm was, “Get it out fast and fix the bugs as the customer finds them,” (i.e., the Microsoft approach). The new paradigm is, “Get them out at Web speed and error-free.” Benchmark organizations complete 90 percent of their projects within 10 percent of budget and on schedule. Information systems organizations that establish standards for project management, including a project office, cut their major project cost overruns, delays and cancellations by 50 percent.

    Let’s look at why projects fail. First, they fail to adhere to committed schedules due to variances, exceptions, poor planning, delays and scope creep. Projects also fail from poor resource utilization, including lack of proper skills, poor time utilization and misalignment of skills and assignments. Often, an organization’s portfolio of projects isn’t managed correctly because the wrong projects are selected, high-risk projects aren’t identified or the interdependencies between projects are poorly controlled. Finally, projects fail due to a loss of intellectual and/or knowledge capital, including lack of means to transfer knowledge, and people leaving the organization.

    Poor project management is one of the biggest problems facing organizations today. It’s therefore surprising that quality professionals haven’t addressed improvements in the project management process. Even ISO 9001 ignores this critical issue. Yet, in our knowledge-driven economy, an organization’s success depends upon the quality of its project management process.

    Our general attitude toward project management is similar to quality management: Everyone thinks he or she knows what quality is and therefore assumes that anyone can manage it. But just as quality managers are special professionals with very specific skills and training, so are project managers. They require skill, training and effective leadership specifically related to project management.

    The ability to manage one project is no longer sufficient; organizations need managers who can handle a portfolio of projects, selecting those that will succeed and bring the biggest return on investments. This requires an effective online reporting system that summarizes a project’s status at least once a week, if not daily. The executive team must also have access to project archives in order to compare proposed project estimates against actual costs and cycle-time data from completed projects. Management wouldn’t approve one-third of the projects proposed if it knew how long they’d take or cost. As John Carrow, CEO of Unisys Corp., says, “The best time to stop a project that you don’t know is going to be successful is when you start it.”

    Far too often a quality department will undertake a major project such as Six Sigma, TQM or reengineering without the necessary project management skills. Basic tools such as work breakdown structure aren’t used. Neither is risk analysis, let alone reasonable mitigation plans. Is it any wonder that the failure rate in quality programs is so high?

    The project management body of knowledge defines 69 tools a project manager must master. Few of the project managers with whom I’ve come in contact have mastered all of them, and only a few project managers are certified by their peers as having done so.

    As you start your next project, my suggestion is: Don’t start it without a certified project manager.