Budget: the first word that comes to mind when we talk about investing in our business. And, what does usually happens after we check the budget? The prevalent, almost “automatic” answer is: “we don’t have money for that now”.
It’s well-known that laws, bylaws, and regulations are increasingly present and ruling the processes in all businesses. Going against or ignoring such rulings might bring some expensive and undesired penalties over.
With that said, we realize a problem waiting to be addressed: how do we balance the so-needed investments and the reality of our budget? We can all probably agree that every time we are penalized with a fine, complaints or low volume of sales, we end up spending more (and not in a planned way). However, it seems many businesses would still rather spend money in this unpredictable way than investing in improving their processes and overall quality of their services and products.
It’s probably a good practice to ask yourself often: how much of my budget we’ve been burning with rework, recalls, product rejection, fines, employees who aren’t adding value?
On the other side, how much of the budget we’ve invested in training, helpful technology and software, preventative actions or risk-minimizing innovation?
It’s clear that investing in innovation in process management will bring clarity, accountability, and a well-defined path businesses can follow to be prepared for any legislation or regulations, allowing for a positive outcome for all parties involved: company, employees, products and customers.
I like Russe Ackoff’s (1994) approach, who 20 years ago said that organizations would be successful if they could change how they visualize results, focusing on sustainable outcomes and operation and not purely on raw profit.
I want to finish by leaving a quick tip: If your company wants to be smart about budgeting, a good strategy is to invest in a simple, smooth, and efficient process management tool. That’s how you’ll minimize costs with non-compliances and lack of quality, bringing you back an attractive return on investment.