13 Process Tactics for Creating Value for Your Business

process tactics

Here’s a guide on how to implement 13 process tactics for creating value in your business, with examples:

1. Flexible Manufacturing

What it is: A production system agile enough to respond to market changes while maintaining efficiency.

How-To: Implement systems that allow for quick changes in production based on customer demands or market trends.

Example: A fabric producer could use modular equipment that easily switches between different types of yarn or weave designs to quickly adapt to fashion trends.

2. Intellectual Property

What it is: Leveraging unique, proprietary processes to commercialize ideas inimitably.

How-To: Develop and protect proprietary technologies, designs, or processes that offer a competitive advantage.

Example: A tech firm patents its innovative battery technology, giving it a competitive edge in the market. A textile firm patents a technique that produces a stronger, lighter fabric, preventing competitors from using the same method.

3. Lean Production

What it is: Minimizing waste and reducing costs in manufacturing and operations.

How-To: Eliminate waste within manufacturing processes by continuous improvement and focusing on value from the customer’s perspective.

Example: An automobile factory implements a just-in-time inventory system, reducing storage costs and minimizing waste. A garment factory implements a system that reduces excess fabric waste in cutting patterns and reuses textile scraps in other products.

4. Localization

What it is: Tailoring products or services to a specific culture or region.

How-To: Tailor products or processes to meet the specific needs of different regions or cultural groups.

Example: A global fast-food chain introduces spicy menu items in Asia, aligning with local taste preferences. A clothing brand develops a clothing line that incorporates traditional patterns and materials from local cultures, catering to regional tastes and preferences.

5. Lock In

What it is: Creating customer dependency through technological features or product ecosystems.

How-To: Develop products or systems that ensure customers remain within your ecosystem.

Example: A smartphone company designs accessories that are only compatible with its devices, encouraging brand loyalty. A textile brand may create a smart garment line that syncs exclusively with it’s brand’s fitness app, encouraging continued use of both the clothing and the app.

6. Logistic Systems

What it is: Efficient management of resource flow from origin to consumption.

How-To: Optimize the supply chain to ensure efficient resource flow from sourcing to final delivery.

Example: An e-commerce company uses AI to optimize delivery routes, ensuring faster and cost-effective shipping. A textile company implements real-time tracking systems for raw material shipments to minimize delays and optimize inventory levels.

7. On-Demand Production

What it is: Manufacturing products post-order receipt to slash inventory costs.

How-To: Shift from mass production to manufacturing products only when an order is placed.

Example: A print-on-demand book service that prints books as orders come in, reducing the need for large inventories. A textile company sets up a system where customers can order custom fabric prints online, which are then produced and shipped directly from the factory.

8. Outsourcing

What it is: Delegating routine or complex tasks to external, often global, entities.

How-To: Contract external entities to handle certain business functions, especially those that are non-core but resource-intensive.

Example: A software company outsources customer support to a specialized firm, focusing on core development. A clothing brand may outsource part of the garment assembly process to specialized firms, allowing the company to focus on design and marketing.

9. Predictive Analysis

What it is: Utilizing historical data to forecast future trends and inform design and pricing.

How-To: Use historical data to forecast future trends and demands, and adjust processes accordingly.

Example: A retail chain analyzes past sales data to predict future fashion trends and stock accordingly.. A fabric manufacturer may analyze past sales data to predict which fabric types will be in demand next season and adjust production schedules in advance.

10. Process Automation

What it is: Implementing systems to automate routine tasks, freeing up employee time for more strategic work.

How-To: Introduce technology solutions that automate repetitive tasks in the production process.

Example: A bank uses chatbots for handling routine customer queries, enabling staff to focus on complex issues. A garment factory may use computer-controlled cutting machines that automatically cut fabrics, reducing manual labor and increasing precision.

11. Process Efficiency

What it is: Maximizing output while minimizing input, in terms of resources, energy, or time.

How-To: Streamline operations to maximize output using minimal inputs without compromising quality.

Example: A manufacturing plant invests in energy-efficient machines, reducing energy costs and boosting productivity. A textile company may redesign the workflow to minimize the movement of materials between production stages, saving time and reducing energy costs.

12. Process Standardization

What it is: Implementing uniform procedures to cut down on complexity, costs, and errors.

How-To: Develop standard operating procedures for common tasks to reduce variability and improve consistency.

Example: A healthcare provider standardizes patient intake procedures across all its locations to improve efficiency and accuracy. A dyeing mill may standardize dyeing procedures across all batch dyeing machines to ensure color consistency for all fabric batches.

13. Vertical Integration

What it is: Controlling multiple steps in the value chain, from resources to production to sales.

How-To: Gain control over multiple stages of production or distribution, from raw materials to final sales.

Example: A fashion brand owning its cotton farms, yarn, fabric and garment factories, and retail stores, controlling the entire supply chain.

Each of these tactics, when implemented thoughtfully, can bring about significant improvements in efficiency, customer satisfaction, and ultimately, profitability. The key is to identify which tactics align best with your business goals and market demands, and then execute them with precision and adaptability.

Note: The above tactics have been drawn and adapted from Doblin and UNITE’s works.

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