The Call Center Professor

Third Principle – The three Cs

For this article we will cover the Third Principle of process management. This principle states the following:

An effective operation must be built on a base of correctness, consistency, and capability. The strategic decision makers provide a correct facility for the tactical decision makers to run correctly. Consistency is the level at which the tactical workforce is able to hit the target. Capability is strategic in nature and measures the facility’s ability to provide what the customer wants.

For improvement to occur, a base-camp of product and process knowledge must be built. This base-camp will include knowledge about each machine’s strategic correctness – its correct, consistent, and capable operation. A medium for communicating this knowledge is key. This medium must present the knowledge in a useable fashion – one that is controllable and maintainable. The base-camp must be built in a predefined sequence. The first step is “correct,” followed by “consistent,” and finally “capable.” These three functions must be done for every aspect of the business. This includes determining the correct, consistent, and capable running of each individual machine. Finally, the product and process knowledge must be used, and the brilliant execution of our knowledge base will lead to improvements.

Now, let’s look at each step in its prescribed order.

The first step in our journey to build an effective operation establishes correctness. This correctness is divided into strategic correctness and tactical correctness.  First, the strategic correctness must be established. A correct, functional organization with clearly defined roles must be determined to cover marketing and sales, product design, process design, manufacturing, and quality assurance. A clearly defined product and a detailed method must be created with targets for each metric. The strategic correct method must be communicated, and our tactical workforce must perfectly execute the plan.

Second, the consistent running of each machine and how well we can achieve the target is a vital piece of information. This second step toward our base-camp means monitoring each metric for every machine to determine how consistent each product and process metric is.  This consistency provides a way of predicting what will be produced time after time.

Finally, with the steps of correctly and consistently run machines or processes we are positioned to assess how well the product we make meets the customer’s expectation. The facility’s capability is now known.

Our understanding of this principle and the information it provides is key to providing the tools that will make our operations and business truly effective in this rapidly changing world we live in.