Operational Excellence is an element of organizational leadership and organizational intelligence that focuses on meeting customer expectation, all while stressing the application of a variety of principles, systems, and tools toward the sustainable improvement of key performance metrics. It is based on data driven metrics that are derived from either algorithm, machine learning or artificial intelligence.1
As simple as it sounds, as cloudy is its implementation in our daily life. When asked exactly what it is, there is always hesitation. Answers such as "It's about process quality (making perfect parts every time)," or "Applying lean tools everywhere to eliminate waste" are common. It is not an easy concept to quantify, and very difficult to explain in simple practical terms to an operator on the production floor, so they know what to do to create and sustain it.2
Defining Operational Excellence
Operational Excellence is when each and every employee can see the flow of value to the customer, and fix that flow when it breaks down. It's that simple. What this means is that each employee knows that the product moves from process A to process B in a specific quantity, at a specific time, to a specific location; otherwise, something is wrong.
Additionally, when something goes wrong (and it will), they know what to do to fix it, without seeing their supervisor, reporting to management, or having a meeting. This happens in the office as well, where employees can see the flow of a customer order through several business processes and fix that flow when it breaks down in the same manner.
Think of it as orders flowing (from order entry through manufacturing to delivery) through a pipe. Someplace (in the office or on the manufacturing floor) the pipe gets clogged and the flow stops. The operators would know what to do to unclog the pipe and allow flow to resume without any management involvement. Employees create and maintain a lean flow, while management focuses on growing the business.2
Best Practice examples at ILMAC LAUSANNE 2017
Five OpEx experts from the chemical and pharmaceutical production will talk about their experiences in process development and how OpEx was implemented in their daily life and how it influences the workflow for operators, process managers and executives.