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.
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 Ebiz Products LLC and founder of Beyer Printing Inc. in Nashville Tenn., is a chronic entrepreneur, business systems analyst and consultant. Author of "System Busters: How to Stop Them in Your Business" and recipient of an InterTech Technology Award for the design and development of System100 business process management software. Beyer speaks to business owners across the country on how to bring lean, sustainable order to their businesses. Contact him at (615) 425-2652.