The Law of Diminishing Returns

So, you’re considering implementing a sustainable quality-control system for your production processes, but something is eating at you. A frequent objection I hear is: “It takes too long to do a checklist, so I would expect a diminishing return on the time I’ve invested!”

In other words, you’re thinking that the time and money you save by NOT using a Quality-Control Checklist is greater than the cost of errors incurred. OK, let’s think about that!

Many have concluded that, “Errors are just the cost of doing business in our industry.”

I would ask those who raise the cost objection: “Have you ever measured and benchmarked the process of completing a checklist vs. the number and the cost of errors incurred?

If I were asked the same question, my answer would be YES! We HAVE measured the process of completing a checklist against the number and cost of errors incurred—for more than 15 years and for every key process—and we would NEVER go back to the so-called ”normal way of doing business.“

Why is that?

Over the years, our reports have PROVEN that using quality-control systems is NOT a diminishing return on investment; rather, the time and money saved is astounding, and some other benefits have been priceless!

Something that is overlooked by skeptics of quality-control systems is that they have only considered the cost of a job having to be REWORKED. They fail to include other nonconforming errors that happen all day, every day in most businesses.

For example:

Data input errors or lack of job specs—Meaning, one department has to call other departments looking for information to complete a job. That’s wasted time, at best; and at worst, the job is spoiled due to lack of information. You get the same old lame excuses: “Nobody told me,” and/or “It wasn’t written on the Job Ticket.”

Philip Beyer, founder/president of Beyer Printing and Ebiz Products LLC in Nashville, TN, is a chronic entrepreneur, business systems analyst and consultant, author of "System Busters: How to Stop Them in Your Business," and an InterTech Award recipient for the design and development of System100™ business process management software. Philip speaks to business owners across the country on how to bring lean, sustainable order to their businesses.
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