What Benchmarking Books Don't Tell You


Lincoln, Sarah; Price, Art   (1996, Nancy Miller, AT&T (fax 908/582-3146; phone 908/582-6880))   AT&T Global Business Communications Systems, Denver, CO

Quality Progress    Vol. 29    No. 3
QICID: 13062    March 1996    pp. 33-36

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Article Abstract

Benchmarking teams should consider the following tips. First, decrease the usual nine to 12 months required for a benchmarking study by: having team members contribute at least 20% of their time; using expert consultants for parts of the study; and collecting comparison data about their own company before benchmarking others. Second, select a scope that is feasible. The broad-and-shallow technique examines the most visible elements of many processes or functions, while a narrow-and-deep methodology looks in detail at only a few elements of a process or function. Third, critical success factors (CSFs) must drive decisions about scope, key measures, questions, analyses, recommendations, and which companies to benchmark. Fourth, the team must be aware that there might be no precise fit of a best-in-class benchmarking partner. The best partners are those that meet fundamental attribute criteria and that are the best performers according to the CSF measures. Fifth, the benchmarking team and all the organization's stakeholders need change management skills for implementation of the team's recommendations.


Benchmarking,Measurement and control,Process analysis,Teams

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