SPECIAL REPORT: Trends and Success Factors in Business Process Excellence 2014

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The results are in!

Businesses have always focused on increasing efficiency, improving quality and cutting costs. However, in today’s global and hyper-competitive economy these aims have now become a strategic imperative. Rapidly evolving commercial and regulatory pressures mean that companies must relentlessly push for greater agility while making use of existing or even fewer resources. That means companies must change - and change often - to survive.

So what role can and does process excellence play in helping today's businesses meet these challenges?

Every two years, PEX Network undertakes a State of the Industry research project to better understand general trends in how companies are approaching operational excellence. What tools and methodologies are they using? What is the outlook for budgets and resources? What are the general trends practitioners are experiencing?

This year the report also explores how process excellence can better support the strategic objectives of C-Level business executives.

This report is based on both quantitative and qualitative data: a survey of of 814 process professionals and a C-level survey of 60 executives followed by telephone interviews with selected participants.

Key findings of this report include:

  • Process Excellence continues to expand into all functional areas of businesses with an increase since 2011 in those reporting use in Legal, Marketing, Sales, Finance, Human Resources and IT functions
  • Six Sigma's popularity continues to decline since our 2011 survey, although use of Lean and Lean Six Sigma remained relatively steady
  • Companies are devoting fewer resources full time to process excellence, with a significant increase since 2011 of those reporting full time resources of 10 people or less
  • Average project lengths continue to decrease with a significant increase since 2011 of respondents reporting average project length of 90 days or less
  • Executives view process excellence as a means to sustaining business growth and improving customer satisfaction.
  • Process professionals may focus too much on tactical benefits of process excellence such as cost savings and automating processes, when executives appear focused on improving customer satisfaction