What is Process Excellence - Operational Excellence Definitions
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What is Process Excellence?

Process Excellence is often confused with Operational Excellence - in fact, many online sources will conflate the two to the point that finding a seperate definition for Process Excellence can sometimes seem impossible. However, Process Excellence, as the name suggests, can be defined as focusing more heavily on the analytical, strategic aspects of Operational Excellence.

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Process Excellence and Process Documentation

Process Excellence, alongside Process Documentation, seeks to ensure:

  • Standardization and co-ordination of expectations across different processes within the same organization or department.
  • Allows a business to continue best practise in the event that Key Subject Matter Experts are unavailable.
  • Helps employees across the board to understand the current state of all processes, and also to measure the performance of the future state of the project.

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Operational Excellence vs. Process Excellence

Whilst the goal of Operational and Process Excellence do intertwine, Process Excellence focuses more heavily on the journey than the destination. Operational Excellence is a final state to be attained, whereas process excellence looks more analytically at stages in production or process, including methods such as process mapping, modelling and more.

Process Excellence requires constant monitoring, and suggests that there is never a final stage to reach - as long as a process exists, there are ways to improve it, streamline it, and encourage more beneficial outcomes. It's easy for Operational Excellence projects to fail when teams believe they have 'reached their destination' with the project, and fall back into old habits. With Process Excellence, the journey is never over.

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"A statement from a college football coach that comes to mind. When asked to comment on the “extraordinary” last second play that won th

e game the coach responded that it was nothing special, they practice it every day. He said and extraordinary play is simply an ordinary play executed flawlessly and an extraordinary time."

- Ron Prince, VP Process Management, Macy's

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