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To say that the business world is fast-paced would be an understatement. In 2021, brands have to constantly innovate and improve upon their existing frameworks to keep up with competitors. This means new marketing and management strategies, fuelled by a steady flow of new ideas and corresponding improvements.
During these processes of innovation, it’s essential to maintain a balance between quality and quantity while maintaining a focus on efficiency and waste reduction. Though it’s often brushed off as a buzzword, continuous improvement is an excellent business strategy. But first, for those of you that aren’t familiar with the term, here’s a quick breakdown!
What is Continuous Improvement?
Continuous Improvement originates from the Japanese term “Kaizen,” which roughly translates to “change for the better”.
It is the practice of continuously improving your business processes and products. Continuous improvement aligns with Lean and Agile business methodologies by emphasizing waste reduction and process efficiency. Basically, continuous improvement is a strategy that aims to help businesses work smarter, not harder.
Why Continuous Improvement is Important for Businesses?
Successful businesses innovate; their consistent innovation is one of the biggest contributors to their success. This is because, with continuous improvement, the goal is to boost profits and productivity without any time or resource wastage in completing work processes.
Continuous improvement strategies work to help you get the most out of your business efforts. If you’re still not entirely sold on it, let’s take a look at one of the world’s most favourite brands and how they’ve put continuous improvement at the forefront of their business strategies.
Benefits of Continuous Improvement
These are the key benefits of continuous improvement
- Boost profits
- Reduce resource waste
- Workflow optimization
- Enables you to get the most out of your business
- Helps you keep up with competitors
- Ensures brand growth
Amazon’s Success with Continuous Improvement
Amazon’s continuous improvement strategy is centered around customer satisfaction and customer experience and is guided by the lean business methodology, which aims to maximize customer value with minimal resource use.
Every job role and department within Amazon’s trillion-dollar enterprise is focused on automation and efficiency. Every job, task, strategy, and existing work process is accompanied by a roadmap to improve them continuously.
This is how Amazon is able to not only keep up with competitors but outrun them when it comes to brand digitization and automation. The numbers speak for themselves; Amazon became the second-ever public company in the world to be valued at $1 trillion.
Blockbuster Video’s Failure and What We Can Learn From It
On the other hand, let’s take a look at a brand that saw a significant decline because it neglected to develop a continuous improvement strategy. If you were a 90’s kid, you probably rented a movie or video game from Blockbuster Video at some point. Up until the early 2000s, Blockbuster Video was thriving.
However, their brand lost traction with customers when competitors like Netflix began home-delivering DVDs to customers. Blockbuster Video relied solely on their brick-and-mortar stores for sales, quickly declining until 2018, when the company filed for bankruptcy.
Amazon’s strategy works because it starts from the right place. The first step to an effective continuous improvement plan is to have clearly outlined goals. It can be tricky for brands to objectively assess work processes and set appropriate goals.
How Can A Business Analyst Consultants Help You With Continuous Improvement?
This is where a business consultant comes in! A business analyst consultant helps give your brand valuable, professional insight into your brand’s continuous improvement strategy. Since they have the necessary training and experience, their perspective is likely to be more practical and conducive to actualizing your company’s goals.
Continuous improvement is the key to unlocking your brand’s full potential. In the current fast-paced, ever-changing digital world of businesses, it’s imperative to your brand’s growth to keep evolving. This means innovating how to maximize customer value and profit by using and wasting the least resources.
Dasun Premadasa is the Founder and CEO of DASCX, the premiere B2B CX consulting firm for manufacturers in Australia. With over two decades of experience including four large CX and digital transformation programs at 4 different manufacturing and automotive firms in Australia, he's one of the best business technology experts for B2B customer experience.