Retail Online Integration

You will be automatically redirected to retailonlineintegration in 20 seconds.
Skip this advertisement.

Advertisement
Follow us on
Connect
Advertisement
 

7 Steps to Self Assessment

How better benchmarking can maximize performance in your fulfillment center

April 2008 By Kate Vitasek
Get the Flash Player to see this rotator.
 
Do you wonder how your fulfillment operation performs against others in your industry? Do you know which processes you’re handling well and those that need improvement? Or even which processes have the most impact on customer service levels? Or which of them lower warehousing and fulfillment costs while improving performance?

Benchmarking, the process fulfillment managers use to draw meaningful comparisons between their companies’ performances and industry standards, can provide answers to all these questions. First, consider the two types of benchmarking.

• Performance Benchmarking compares quantitative performance results, or metrics, to those of several different companies or to industry standards. Its objective is to identify areas for improvement.

• Process Benchmarking compares specific processes to best-in-class process attributes in a qualitative manner. Its objective is to improve specific processes and operations within the business.

Many companies rely solely on quantitative performance benchmarking or comparing metrics. But they never turn over the rock to learn what companies are doing to actually drive their results. Processes drive results, however, and performance benchmarking only identifies gaps in the desired result. In other words, process benchmarking diagnoses the root cause of the gaps so they can be treated.

Effective and Practical
Though outside consultants can help with benchmarking, many companies can self-assess their warehousing and fulfillment operations. Benchmarking your organization takes work, but it needn’t be overwhelming. Try these seven steps.

STEP 1: Set benchmarking priorities. The benchmarking process begins with the company’s strategic planning process. Aligning the fulfillment team’s objectives to company goals will likely make benchmarking successful and add value by focusing on issues that have the greatest impact on that strategy. Benchmarking projects won’t get the support needed from C-level executives if they don’t have a positive impact on the company’s goals.

STEP 2: Identify key processes. Focus on the processes that have the greatest impact on the company’s customers and the company itself. A simple four-quadrant matrix can help you identify benchmarking priorities. Benchmark those processes that have high costs or strategic impact on your company, and/or high impact on your customers so you're focused on high-value activities.

You can focus on processes that have lower impact, but their results won’t create optimal value from the investment driving those improvements.

STEP 3: Collect data. Comparing your company metrics to available best-in-class benchmarking data (quantitative benchmarking) will expose underperforming areas. Research of best-in-class performance may be interindustry or intraindustry, so your time required can vary widely.
 

SPONSORED CONTENT

MORE ON OMNICHANNEL INTEGRATION >>

FROM THE BOOKSTORE

You know you need to gather donor data. But why? And more 
importantly, how? And even more importantly, what do you do with it once
 you've gathered it? Are you gathering too much? Or the wrong kind?
	This new 
	FundRaising Success
	webinar brings the case-study format of our popular Engage conference 
to an extended, value-added webinar that will dig deep and give 
nonprofits guidance on the best ways to gather and use donor information
 — as well as take the mystery and trepidation out of the whole issue.
	Featuring:
	Page Bullington, Target Analytics; Mazarine Treyz, "The Wild Woman of 
Fundraising and Social Media"; and Roger Hiyama, Russ Reid
	Duration: 75 minutes
	Cost: $19.95AVAILABLE ON-DEMAND UNTIL 9/9/14
	Click here to view this webinar today! Engage Virtual Workshop: Driving Donations with Data

You know you need to gather donor data. But why? And more importantly, how? And even more importantly, what do you do with it once you've gathered it? Are you gathering too much? Or the wrong kind? This new FundRaising Success webinar brings the case-study format of our popular...

ORDER NOW

Train Your Board (and Everyone Else) to Raise Money Train Your Board (and Everyone Else) to Raise Money

...

ORDER NOW

 

COMMENTS

Click here to leave a comment...
Comment *
Most Recent Comments:

SUBSCRIBE TO Today @ Target Marketing

Receive our FREE Daily
e-newsletter:
     Privacy Policy
 

RETAIL ONLINE INTEGRATION MAGAZINE:

Get Your FREE Subscription to Retail Online Integration:
May/June 2014 Issue
     Privacy Policy