Blog | Tips and Advice from 81up
Processes and Procedures: why you need both
In our previous blog we discussed the importance of standards which leads us to the next conversation around procedures and processes. Procedures and processes tell you; okay cool I want a process at a very high level as an electrical company for example.
The very first thing is, we get a tender made, we do a take-off, an estimate and provide a quote. Once we win the quote then we need to sign the contracts. Once the contract is signed we start planning, ordering the materials and we make sure that gets delivered on site. We resource the project correctly and send our guys to the site. They are based onsite daily and the guys know what needs to get done.
All these key things are important but the question here is as a business owner are you running your business in a haphazard manner?
So it’s all in your head and you think that it’s all there, there is so much to do and there’s the opportunity to actually miss something along the way. If you miss something it may have some very severe consequences at the end and it might cause delays onsite. So you find that you miss your deadlines and you get penalties or you may find that you have guys onsite but they have no work which means a loss of income.
There’s all these things that if you don’t have your processes in place then nobody knows what the steps are that they need to follow.
Processes ensure there is a repeatable process that employees can follow this will result in the consistent delivery of projects and will provide consistent results for the company.
The next level down is procedures; when you look at procedures it’s a step by step process of what you need to do almost like a checklist. So, how to install a switchboard there is a checklist, from there you can actually look at providing the right level of training.
Yes you will have some really experienced people and yes you would have been in the business for five, ten years and you’re running a very successful business and you’re extremely proficient as an electrician but you will have apprentices that you are going to be training for the next two to three years. Very often you will find that at the end of that training during the apprenticeship a lot of “A” graders are not to the level of proficiency or competency we expect of them.
It means that they are not as skilled and they won’t be as fast and efficient onsite which impacts you’re bottom-line at the end of the day. What you are looking for is you are looking to train up your apprentices within the first six to twelve months and you can only achieve that if you have the right procedures in place.
However, the issue is when people are all the onsite, when the “A” grader is onsite and they’re busy with the delivery of the work, they have very little chance to explain to the apprentices what to do and if that’s the case then training is hampered and is slowed down.
Having the right procedures in place and having those checklists in place allows new recruits and new apprentices to actually go through the checklist and tick through the boxes and the “A” grader may need to explain how to do it once. Provide the checklist and then from there it’s a way of a guide for the apprentice to actually follow. So those are really important.
It also works really well when you have procedures when you have new people coming in and you already have the system working like clockwork.