Hitting the moving target of operational excellence: Identifying and obtaining the information needed for continued success

Overview:

This white paper presents IDC’s framework for implementing operational excellence (op ex) and helps the reader move toward an effective op ex implementation while avoiding potential pitfalls.

These are challenging times for firms that have grown to be larger than small businesses but aren’t yet large or Fortune 1000 businesses. Getting access to the right information has never been more important for CIOs who craft and implement IT strategy or for senior operating executives who provide strategic direction and are responsible for a firm’s financial success. But with data more readily available than ever, the key questions are: What do we need to know? How do we go about getting the information we need?

The changing competitive environment places a premium on efficiency, and companies that might once have done just fine with legacy approaches to measuring their processes and performance are finding life increasingly difficult. The rise of technology use has complicated, not simplified development of effective processes and measurement. We now have the ability to examine performance in so many ways and deliver that information through so many different (though sometimes incompatible) platforms that it is hard to know where to begin.

Of course, internal assessments are only the first step in identifying information needs. Customer, supplier, and government constituencies are demanding higher levels of performance. Given the sharper competitive environment domestically and internationally, the external need for improving information access can be even more compelling than pressures from within a company.

This white paper presents IDC’s framework for implementing operational excellence (op ex) and helps the reader move toward an effective op ex implementation while avoiding potential pitfalls. Three critical steps — internal assessment, competitive benchmarking, and resource prioritization and acquisition — are described to support development and refinement of successful op ex practices.

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