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2.03 - Continuous Improvement


Ongoing continuous improvement in business processes with improvements generated by the workforce is the goal for many world class companies. Early attempts to establish this environment via quality circles usually flounder or failed to meet expectations.

Step Changes are needed to improve performance

Sustaining a programme of continuous improvement needs some prerequisites and often requires a “step change” to put them in place.

Team Environment

A natural group or team will be established, who are focused on a business process and feel empowered to bring about change in their own area.

Effective measures of performance and “standard working” will be in place to ensure that changes result in improvement and changes in process can be captured and communicated.

Beliefs and Values

Management support, employee empowerment and the belief that all can make a real contribution are essential.

Supporting Infrastructure

Features Include:

  • Executive lead quality councils
  • Recognition systems
  • Improvement schemes
  • Continuous Improvement Schemes
  • Training in tools and Techniques

This is the area most often emphasised, however, one or two of the simplest techniques (for example Brain-Storming, Cause & Effect analysis and input & output analysis) are all that is required to get started.

Establishing Continuous Improvement Teams

Establishing Continuous Improvement Teams

Further Reading