Business Excellence in Enterprises [By Marc Sng]

“The pursuit of excellence is incredibly long and endless, never ending, and often very long; and as soon as you realise that success is a destination, then you have lost. Success must never become a destination.” – Heinrich Grafe, General Manager, Conrad Centennial Singapore, Singapore Quality Award Winner (2007)

In today’s rapidly evolving and increasingly interconnected world, enterprises are continuously searching for the formula of sustainable growth. Regardless of industry, structure or size, all enterprises need to enhance their organisational capabilities in order to enjoy sustained growth.

It is fundamentally the actions, policies and the maximisation of limited resources that organisations must balance to achieve their goals. Strategic management enables organisations to transform these management goals into realisable results. There are many business frameworks that organisations can utilise to better understand their strengths and weaknesses, but most frameworks are not able to comprehensively identify causality relationships between performance drivers and the achieved results. Consequently, enterprises are not able to effectively implement and deploy a data-driven approach to strengthen their management systems, to create more value for their stakeholders and improve the organisation’s results.

The SPRING Singapore Business Excellence (BE) Framework comprehensively encapsulates the relationships of the seven key performance drivers in a busines­s­ – Leadership, Strategy, Customers, People, Process, Knowledge Management and Results – and how each of them impacts the others. It is aligned to other major international Business Excellence frameworks such as the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award from the United States, the European Foundation for Quality Management (EFQM) Excellence Award, the Japan Quality Award and the Australian Business Excellence Award.

Enhanced_BE_Framework

Insights to Business Excellence, SPRING Singapore (2010)

The business excellence framework provides a holistic perspective that covers all key factors that drive processes, achieving the desired business results.

The organisation’s Leadership sets the culture and tone for organisational excellence and is the guiding light for moving the organisation towards a common goal. Ultimately, good leadership will enable you to better understand and value-add to your Customers by being able to anticipate and address their needs. Strategy is derived from understanding customers and stakeholders alike, which in turn enables you to develop your People and organisational Process capabilities to achieve the desired Results. To sustain these desired results, the organisation needs to continually innovate and learn, through an effective Knowledge Management system. This feedback loop drives improvements and supports circumspect decision-making. A 2009 study by the National University of Singapore Business School found that the business excellence journey had benefitted Singaporean organisations greatly in several areas, including raising key performance standards, transforming the organisation into a learning and thinking enterprise, thereby enabling sustainable growth. Over a four-year period, Business Excellence-certified organisations outperformed their industry counterparts by approximately 35%.

Business excellence in enterprises is about adopting a holistic approach to strengthen existing management systems and processes for sustainable growth and increased productivity. Through an in-depth analysis of the organisation’s application of the seven key business excellence performance drivers, all enterprises can enhance their organisational capabilities to enjoy greater long-term success.

By Marc Sng.