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Replicating Project Uptime

How We’re Replicating Project Uptime Across Our Platform

Patrick Sondreal

We’ve talked in the past about our Continuous Improvement initiatives and their impact on our customer journey. We’re constantly working to get better, and Project Uptime is a process that helps us identify opportunities to increase efficiencies and discover areas where we can improve.

Direct marketing is a challenging and constantly changing industry, and new technologies and channels have made competition fierce. It’s more important than ever for us to push the limits on what we can do and how efficiently we do it. At the end of day, it’s about finding ways to be more efficient so we can continue to deliver unique, quality products in a timely manner for our customers.

Project Uptime Drives Performance Improvements

Our end goal is to cultivate a culture of high quality and high performance. We’re taking time to make adjustments and find ways to improve what we do and how we do it. With the stance that we can always do better, we are demonstrating a commitment to that philosophy by driving these improvements across our platform.

The results have been impressive as evidenced by the performance across several departments. Project Uptime has led to improved collaboration between departments, consistent measurement and reporting, and more efficient use of labor. Some of the key changes have come from employee input and resulted in significant process efficiencies.

Project Uptime is Now Moving to the Front-End

Our previous Project Uptime efforts have been focused on the operations end of our organization. Now, we’re beginning to move our attention to the front-end. Project Uptime in general looks at how we can alter the process, improve the system, and modify the behavior of employees. On the production side, we tend to think of easily measured improvements, like how to reach faster run speeds or increase personnel efficiency. However, those kinds of measurements aren’t as easily applied to customer service and other front-end initiatives.

Because of this, we have really focused on the behavior of our team and finding ways to minimize handoffs and simplify work to reduce potential quality issues and lead times. To do this, we are focused on making sure that our supervisors, managers, team leads, and other leadership members have the right tools in place to help them and their teams be as successful as possible. In order to find areas for improvement, we’re trying to better understand how every employee performs their job roles and evaluate how pain points can be mitigated. The end results are creating or implementing tools and resources, establishing process changes, and even redesigning work space.

Project Uptime Comes with Its Own Challenges

One of the hardest aspects of Project Uptime is implementation. It’s great to find ways to drive improvements, but creating that change can be a long process. Change is hard for everyone, especially when it’s a change in daily routines and tasks. It’s part of the reason we’re working with leadership first; so the direction given is consistent and part of the same plan. Supervisors, managers, and team leads play a huge role in implementing this change. Not only do they communicate the changes on a one-to-one level, but they can easily identify problems that arise and help find solutions. They also contribute to the culture change by leading by example and helping morale stay high.

The resistance to change is also why we’re putting such a focus on communication, so all employees understand why these changes are occurring and how they’re going to improve their jobs in the long run. We’ve always aimed at establishing a work culture that can embrace and recommend change, and that groundwork has come into play as we implement the improvements found through Project Uptime across our platform.

Project Uptime Continues to Grow

As Project Uptime continues to take root and Continuous Improvement efforts leverage that approach, we’re making sure we have the proper resources in place to sustain these improvements in the long run. We’re excited to show the results of these efforts as they roll out and demonstrate to our clients how these improvements benefit their products and power their marketing.

link https://www.iwco.com/blog/2017/10/24/replicating-project-uptime-across-platform/
Patrick Sondreal

Author

Patrick Sondreal

SVP Operations & Customer Experience. Graduate of the University of Wisconsin–Madison with an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. Commissioned officer of the U.S. Navy who brings a commitment to teamwork and continuous improvement to IWCO Direct every day. Wisconsin Badger fan who loves being part of his kids’ activities.

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