Business simplification


  • Many companies suffer from layers of complexity that have built up over the years
  • To stay competitive it is important to constantly find ways to simplify cost structures, customer propositions, processes and flows in the business
  • Our proven business simplification approach 'connects the dots' while reducing complexity

What is the challenge?

Companies have become more globalized, outsourced and technology driven, driving complexity of the operations. The need for simplifications has become greater. As layers of processes, decision-making and IT systems swell to create an overload of complexity, business simplification is increasingly a strategic focus. The main symptoms of an overly complex organization are:

- Low effectiveness and efficiency
- Lack of transparency
- Lack of responsiveness and agility - Duplication of processes
- Extra process layers
- Process gaps
- Process variations where it is not clear if the value is really greater than the cost
- Guidelines and rules that slow the organisation down
- Low ability to capture digitalization opportunities, as processes are not ready for automation
- Reduced ability to integrate strategic acquisitions

Our approach

Business process simplification is a roadmap approach that allows companies to scope, structure and deliver simpler process integration across the company and with value chain partners:

- Conduct a scoping workshop with the leadership and process transformation teams
- Ensure the the business simplification efforts are connected to value (strategic objectives) and to processes, people and systems (capabilities)
- Prioritise the key processes and their value contribution
- Define guiding principles for process simplification
- Analyse priority processes: Current state using operational data, process maps (as per preferred or framework format, KPIs, Gaps)
- Assess the effectiveness, efficiency and triple value add of processes
- Determine the vision for the to be processes and performance
- Develop a business simplification roadmap to achieve short, mid and long term results
- Pilot business simplification in one of the key processes
- Conduct a retrospect on the pilot and adjust where required
- Scale from pilot to the business

Methods and tools

Our methodology SPEED uses a mix of own experience based approaches with industry leading frameworks and methods:
- Frameworks: EFQM, APQC, SCOR, VRM, ITIL, COBIT, ...
- Complexity assessment
- Process simplification guidelines

The Benefits

- Improved transparency
- Reduced redundancy
- Improved speed through reduced cycle times
- Improved quality
- Elimination of time and resource waste
- Reduction, eliminations and avoidance of bottlenecks and mistakes
- Improved customer satisfaction (and higher net promoter scores)
- Clean processes as prerequisite for digitalization
- 60% productivity increase
- 20%+ cost reduction of the addressable cost base

Key success factors

- Define ambition and scope properly
- Connect back to the dimensions of value
- Use a best practice framework to get started
- Manage change carefully, as not everyone in the organization understands process over functional thinking
- Don't go to steep, don't get lost
- Reduce barriers to change and reward efforts to simplify