The Factory-Office is still all the rage; not the Taylor’s model but the one based on the Lean Production ideated by Toyota. Lean means no more hidden waste and time and space optimization by applying Lean standards to the information and documental flow.
Lean Thinking is especially useful, as explained by Michele Bonfiglioli AD of Bonfiglioli Consulting, whom we interviewed, together with Giuseppe Segalla, senior partner di KM Management.
This approach had a delayed development in the office, compared to the factory, where the flow is more visible, but recently it has spread widely, especially among those companies already using Lean Manufacturing and needing now to extend it to the offices, but there some interesting applications in the banking world, as well.
Said Segalla “It’s a different, cultural approach, sometimes the opposite of what is used as a rule, until the first results are attained; it’s important to get a change coming from the bottom, with project teamworks through the continuous improvement system Kaizen”.
Here are the basic points for Lean Organization in the office summerized by Bonfiglioli Consulting:
1: Assessment of the organizational structure and, in case, planning it again after considering procedures, skills and saturation of employees;
2: Definition of simple processes, where “unprofitable activities” were isolated and included;
3: Reorganization of the working environment to make it suitable for the task performed;
4: Assessment of the technologies available in the company.
The following results can be attained:
Productivity: from +10% to +30%
Lead time of processes: from -20% to -60%
Space used as offices: from -15% to -50%
Absenteeism: from -5% to -20%
Turnover: from -10% to -30%
The clear qualitative advantages are to be added to these quantifiable results.