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5 Ways to Increase Your Plant’s Production Efficiency

CPD 1 11

Production efficiency is not easy and studies show most companies are squandering 50% of their key resources—labor and equipment.

Out of Alignment: How Organizational Alignment Issues are Killing Your Productivity

CPD Core Dec 11

At a consumer goods packaging plant employees gathered every morning and waited for the Production Manager’s signal to begin their shift. This wasn’t a matter of overly earnest workers arriving early to get a jump start on a day’s work, but was the result of the overnight sanitation crew taking longer than their allotted time to clean the facility for the morning shift.  This morning ritual of arriving and waiting had been practiced for as long as most employees could remember, to the point where it was an accepted part of a typical work day.  The sanitation crew was allocated four hours every night to clean the plant and turn it over to production in the morning.  They typically exceeded this allotted time by 45 minutes to an hour. 

Scheduling: The Key Driver of Process Innovation and Sustainable Improvement

CPD Core 12 3

In your search for process innovation that will drive sustainable performance improvement, scheduling your business may not be the first thing to come to mind -- but it should be. Done right, it can help expose the delta between current performance and potential performance levels, and serve as a catalyst for bringing together separate functional areas and aligning them to a set of clear objectives.

How Inaccurate Labor Standards Impact Budgets and Hotel Profitability

CPD Hospitality

The budget is the property guide to revenue, cost, and hotel profitability requirements. The aim is to forecast revenue and cost taking into consideration such factors as seasonality, rate, and mix. The setting of labor standards provides a framework to identify the hours required to service demand.  All too often, labor standards fall into the trap of process redundancy and lack of scientific rigor leading to inflated costs and/or service breakdowns.

Translating Organizational Alignment Into Consistent Execution

Core Image

Costly alignment issues tend to reveal themselves at the point of execution, but the root causes can often be traced back to poor planning.

How Workforce Analytics in Restaurants Can Help You React to Forecast Inaccuracy

11.9.15 HowWorkforceAnalyticsCanHelpYouReacttoForecastInaccuracy

Having a plan is great, but a plan is never perfect. Sticking to a pre-determined plan even when your assumptions prove to be wrong, or unforeseen external factors enter the picture, can result in operational challenges and unsatisfied internal and external customers. Planning and forecasting is not a discrete task that is ever really complete, but an ongoing process that requires constant feedback and intelligence.  For restaurant managers, poor forecasting and planning can cause over or under staffing, which can in turn lead to service breakdowns, unsatisfied guests, disengaged employees and inconsistent profitability. 


Enabling Cultural Change Through Organizational Alignment

11.4.15 Core Alingment

A myriad of research studies and our own observation has demonstrated that culture is critical to corporate performance. Understanding the importance of culture to performance is certainly not a recent area of interest for leaders, as Peter Drucker observed years ago, “culture eats strategy for breakfast”. His point was not that strategy is irrelevant, but that culture can kill a great idea or strategy at the point of execution. We have found that the root cause of breakdowns in execution can be traced to a lack of organizational alignment, and that addressing alignment can be the starting point for turning the culture. 

Workforce Planning Basics: How Poor Front Office Planning Causes Guest Dissatisfaction

universal customer value
A guest’s first experience upon arrival at a property can set the tone for their entire stay.  If there is no one to greet them and assist with luggage or a long line at check-in, you have immediately put yourself in a deficit situation that will require over-servicing to get them back to acceptable levels of satisfaction. Ensuring an adequate number of valets and front desk attendants is critical. As they must always be available for guest service, this inevitability creates downtime as guest volume changes day to day and even minute to minute. The challenging question is how much downtime is required and when does it become excessive? When is front desk agent waiting time costing more than it should?

Front Office Staffing Challenges


What are we actually trying to improve?

universal customer value

"Boiling the ocean" is one of those phrases that can be quite accurate but is still slightly irritating to use or hear. It refers to analyzing something to death or tackling a problem with an impossible scope. And it's an easy trap to fall into when you are looking for opportunities. The usual reason for doing what inevitably ends up as a waste of time is the lack of a hypothesis. If you go searching for opportunity without some idea of what you are trying to determine, you may well have someone throw this phrase your way.

Why happy customers aren't enough

key buying attributes of customers

Over the years we've done a number of studies to try to help our clients find out what their customers think of them. These types of studies are often packaged under the term "voice of the customer." The idea is to survey customers to identify their key buying attributes and their priorities, and see how the company stacks up against competitors and alternatives. They are also quite predictable in many industries. Managers are also surveyed; they often score themselves highly. And so do customers. Companies often fare quite well with existing customers, and even with non-customers, on many important attributes. The problem is that competitors fare well too.

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