How to identify a world-class operational excellence system

Achieving operational excellence requires a suitable system to drive and execute your improvement strategy. This blog discusses the key features of a world-class operational excellence system.

Digital transformation and the global economy’s recent roller-coaster have jolted many manufacturers awake to the urgent need to evolve their continuous improvement efforts. An operational excellence system is the preeminent choice for organizations aiming for world-class maturity and sustainability.


What is an operational excellence system?

An operational excellence system focuses on establishing a continuous improvement culture that applauds teamwork, innovation, accountability, knowledge-sharing, and working together with leadership to achieve excellence and create more customer value and greater business growth.


Key features of a world-class operational excellence system

An organization’s human workforce is without a doubt crucial to creating and sustaining operational excellence. Teams need to be made up of highly skilled, curious and empowered people who are able to align their work in pursuit of a shared goal. A superior operational excellence system can build an organization’s internal capabilities through relevant and regular training and upskilling programs.

A world-class operational excellence system is recognized by the following key features:


  1. A seamless and intuitive user experience

A digitally enabled operational excellence information system is agile, responsive and provides users with fast (and good) decision-making support. It helps to amplify CI initiatives across an organization’s global footprint. Powered by real-time, data-driven analytics and advanced technologies, teams have transparent access to information as and when they need it. Thus, all activities related to planning, training, implementing and assessing can be managed online.

A seamless and intuitive user experience bolsters an organization’s capabilities to engage with customers and other stakeholders in a decisive and united approach.


  1. Stage-based maturity process to define customized deployment phases

Organizations with a world-class operational excellence system in play can achieve impressive business results thanks to an implementation plan based on the business’ current level of maturity. Rather than attempting to conduct wholesale change, an organization needs to first assess its baseline level of maturity against its end-state goal. By understanding its strengths and weaknesses, a company can address certain areas with specific solutions which is a far more efficient and cost-effective approach.

As an organization progresses on its operational excellence journey, it will evolve from a siloed, hierarchical and function-focused company to a fully integrated and digitalized demand-driven value network (DDVN) that unites and motivates all its workers to create value for the customer to the highest standards.  Each site or organization will progress to the next step based on its own specific circumstances and current level of maturity – no two sites or organizations are the same.


  1. A global improvement plan and vision

Many manufacturers are already familiar with the continuous improvement methodologies such as Six Sigma, Kaizen and TQM. While these methodologies are effective in traditional manufacturing environments, they need to be adapted and integrated holistically to provide a best practice foundation in a digitalized workplace.

An operational excellence management system is designed to support integrated, continuous improvement in digitalized or digitalizing organizations. It aligns global strategy, leadership, functional priorities and improvement agenda to achieve – and sustain – world-class practices and business processes.


Download the eBook The definitive guide to integrative improvement for more on this sustainable and holistic approach to continuous improvement.

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  1. Actions are based on industry best practice

A superior operational excellence system takes current trends and industry best practices into account. This ensures that an organization’s CI focus is relevant and committed to operational discipline, always one step ahead of the competition and tuned into its customers’ ever-changing demands.

See examples of the TRACC manufacturing excellence model for OEMs and supply chains here.


  1. Implementation is supported by resources and training material

An operational excellence management system supports best practice implementation through a seamless and easily accessible digital platform. Users are able to access all the necessary shared learning and upskilling resources they need to develop their capabilities and sustain an organizational culture of holistic, positive change.

Online resources and training materials are designed for:

    • Mobile interfaces
    • Expansion and upgrades as/when required
    • Digital dashboards
    • Automated, dynamic reporting
    • Rapid knowledge gain and workplace application
    • Functional collaboration
    • Any device, anytime, anywhere


  1. Analytics and reporting functionality

A world-class operational excellence information system enables an organization to monitor its progress in real time. Using the company’s desired end-goal as its assessment metric, the analytics and reporting functionality enables users to view maturity reports and identify areas that are falling behind. Data-driven insights, patterns and trends are generated and shared with ease, providing organizations with the information they need to fast-track improvements where needed.


  1. Building internal capabilities and managing change

In line with the fundamental principles of continuous improvement, an organization’s entire workforce needs to embrace positive change. Given that change is often challenging for people to accept, clear and consistent support is required to help workers stay the course. Investments in digital technologies will only show returns if workers are encouraged to upskill and feel confident in their capabilities.

An operational management system should create a supportive environment conducive to a high-performing company culture characterized by advanced operational efficiencies, boosted productivities, low staff turnover, satisfied customers and sustainable competitive advantages. An organization that successfully embeds a culture of integrated and continuous improvement will stand the test of time.

An operational excellence system helps an organization implement best practices and maturity-based transformation through building internal capabilities and managing the complexities of change.

Leading and Managing Change (LMC) is a TRACC best practice that guides you through the following actions for successful and sustainable results:

    • Improvement strategy deployment
    • Effective change management
    • Leadership development
    • Employee engagement
    • Change agility
    • Learning and knowledge-sharing


A world-class operational excellence management system helps ready an organization for emerging trends. Supported by integrated, on-trend improvement planning, the company can respond to changes in the market without missing a beat.

Current emerging trends include:

    • Digital operating systems
    • Systems integration and automation
    • Big data analytics and predictive capabilities
    • Data integrity practices
    • Digital transformation
    • Process control and quality
    • Smart asset care
    • IT systems and operational technology capability


  1. Dedicated client support

Organizations pursuing world-class operational excellence need expert assistance. Digital transformation can be overwhelming and companies are increasingly concerned about online security and skills. A good operational excellence management system offers secure platform setup complete with hosting and configuration guidelines. It also addresses skills and development needs with workshops and training resources.


Evolve and adapt with TRACC

Organizations that strive for sustainable success need an operational excellence system that meets all these elements.

TRACC is a digital supply and manufacturing operations management system that supports integrated, continuous improvement. Its secure online platform enables organizations to assess, plan, train, manage and report on their global improvement initiatives with ease and peace of mind.

By helping organizations achieve sustainable results through best practice and work process improvement, TRACC drives operational improvement across entire value chains. TRACC-powered organizations can evolve and adapt, are strengthened by change, steadfastly competitive, and ready to meet new challenges and opportunities.

Book a demo to find out more about unlocking sustainable competitive advantage with the TRACC solution.

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