Negative Press Motivates Impossible Mission

Case Study

- November 2010

Abstract: Telefónica’s Impossible Mission team set out to improve the company’s ability to pay advertising placement invoices according to agreed upon terms. Applying a Six Sigma approach and quality tools such as process mapping, 5 Whys, multivoting, Pareto charts, and Gantt and PERT charts, the team increased on-time payments from 2 percent to 97.5 percent. Among other results, recovery of tax credits that would have been missed due to the poor payment system netted $1.7 million, employee satisfaction increased from 36 percent to 85.4 percent, and supplier satisfaction improved from 28 percent to 86 percent. By paying advertisingrelated invoices in a timely manner, Telefónica Group also avoided penalties and increased its ability to negotiate rates.

Keywords: Case study; Telecommunications; Six Sigma; Business results; Teamwork; Force field analysis; Root cause analysis; Process improvement;

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