How to Improve Business Performance: An Enhanced Process Improvement Methodology

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How to improve business performance needs so that the big picture benefits is provided in the Integrated Enterprise Excellence (IEE) business management system and its process improvement methodology.

Business process improvement (BPI) is important to all organizations.  To be competitive, enterprise survival depends upon the improvement in how operations and other business functions are executed. However, often organizations focus these business-execution enhancement efforts in silos that do not positively impact the business as a whole.

Business Process Improvement Initiatives and their Issues

Organizational improvement initiatives, whether they are Lean, Six Sigma, Total Quality Management (TQM), or some other program, should consider how these efforts, when implemented, would positively impact the enterprise performance measure’s big picture.

With these and other business process improvement undertakings, organizations should avoid:

  • Creating a Six Sigma program where 100 million dollars in savings might be reported, but nobody can find the money.
  • Instituting Lean where many kaizen events are executed, even though there is no demonstration of how these efforts impact key performance indicator (KPI) business metrics.
  • Deploying Business Process Management (BPM) where much effort could be spent documenting processes and/or automating processes. This effort might seem to have local benefits; however, often executives don’t appreciate the undertaking nor the stated claims for it.

An Enhanced BPI Methodology

What I am not suggesting is that Six Sigma, Lean, BPM, and other BPI programs are bad; however, instead, what is needed is a system where these methodologies are integrated and coordinated.

With this suggested integration:

  • Focus would be given to positively impact predicatively-reported business performance metrics that are important to the enterprise as a whole.
  • Measurement performance improvement needs would pull for projects that positively impact the enterprise as a whole.
  • Process documentation would exist in a value chain where business processes are linked structurally with their performance metrics. An Integrated Enterprise Excellence (IEE) system can fulfill these business process improvement needs, and more.

The IEE system consists of nine steps where step seven is business process improvement efforts are selected.  These improvement efforts could be a Lean kaizen event, a define-measure-analyze-improve-control (DMAIC) Lean Six Sigma improvement project, a just do it project, or a design project.  The type of project does not really matter as much as how well the targeted operational metric improves the organizational performance metrics that are to benefit the whole enterprise.


how to improve business performance: IEE 9-step system


The IEE system addresses the common-place business management system issues that are described in a one-minute video:


how to improve business performance video


Executive High-level IEE BPI System Benefits

Executives appreciate how the IEE business process improvement methodology can:

  • Improve financials.
  • Recognize how to grow the business wisely.
  • Recognize where to reduce costs without affecting the customer.
  • Identify business areas that would generate the greatest overall gain from improvement.
  • Increase the use of data into higher-level business decisions.
  • Increase understanding of how the business is performing at all levels.
  • Recognize the key performance metrics that drive the business.
  • Improve achievement of strategic planning goals.
  • Integrate new businesses into your core business.
  • Improve strategic planning process’ effectiveness.
  • Grow the business through wise acquisition.

IEE BPI Achievements

IEE can enhance both project selection and execution of these processes at the process level.  From a system point of view, the result of this effort can:

  • Enhance metric/performance reporting that leads to optimal decisions.
  • Reduce defects and/or improve efficiencies.
  • Lead to increased consistency in executing processes.
  • Enhance the innovation and development processes.
  • Increase flexibility to changing market needs and government requirements.
  • Enhance customer experience and better meet customer needs.
  • Improve end-to-end processes and Lean Six Sigma project effectiveness.
  • Manage the organization more effectively.
  • Integrate legacy systems.
  • Enhance traditional Business Process Management System (BPM) efforts.

Integration of Performance Metrics with Processes Provides BPI Insight

The IEE value chain, described in step 2 of the previous 9-step system, can become a repository for process and performance documentation that becomes the foundation for achievement of the previously listed executive and business benefits of the IEE system.



Processes can be drilled down to various levels of details in the IEE value chain through the rectangular boxes in the value chain, while predictive performance measurements for each function are provided through a click of the oblong boxes in the value chain.

When the IEE value chain is examined structurally, insight can be gained as to what business performance metrics improvement needs would result in the most benefits to the enterprise as a whole (steps 4-7 of the 9-step IEE business system).

Automation of Business Process Improvement Identification Opportunities

When performance metrics are automatically updated and these metrics separate special-cause events from common-cause variability, much can be gained.  An Enterprise Performance Reporting System (ERPS) fulfills this need.


Software Tracks Improvement Results
Software Tracks Improvement Results


Everyone throughout the organization – who has authorization – can readily determine how the processes are performing with the understanding that if there is common-cause variability and the response is undesirable, then BPI improvements are needed.

Strategically, organizations can examine their metrics collectively to determine where their BPI efforts have the most gain.

How to Enhance your Organizational BPI Efforts

To be effective, business process improvement deployments need to effectively integrate this work with process improvement efforts so that performance improvement needs pull for the creation of projects that positively impact the enterprise as a whole. The Integration Enterprise Excellence (IEE) system is a means to accomplish this objective.

The IEE system is described at various levels in a five-book set.


how to improve business performance books


Contact Us to set up a time to discuss with Forrest Breyfogle how your organization might gain much from an Integrated Enterprise Excellence (IEE) Business Process Management System and improvement implementation. 

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