In this article:
You who have worked with any business process leader (Sales, Marketing and etc.), have heard from the company's President / CEO or its manager:
We need to sell more!
That's the biggest constant. For the company to grow it needs to increase its sales and improve its margin. For this, it is essential to have a well defined business process that can always be analyzed for the purpose of it always improving.
Here in LUZ we usually use the Cycle PDCA and its 4 steps when we have any problems in any of our business processes. I will explain a little more about this process, writing below about a problem we had recently.
Last month we realized that our number of Spreadsheet Packages sold fell. We then decided to sit down and begin to understand what had happened. To do this, we use our Worksheet and begin to list the possible causes of our problem. After a good session of Brainstorming we can reach the causes below:
To raise these causes we think about the current format of our Package Sales Funnel. Thus we raise the following causes:
- New Leads Do not Buy Packages - Our new leads, which we have been getting in the past few weeks, bought few packages and this could be one of the causes.
- Product Description is not good - The description of our product, on our site, formerly had videos and images, which we take. Maybe this lack of videos may have hurt our results.
- We do not have Package Conversion Indicators - We did not look at the package-specific sales funnel, but only the site as a whole.
- Demo versions take time to download - The free demo versions of our packages took a longer time to download to our customers' computer than a regular Spreadsheet.
- Marketing Budget is Limited - Our money is not infinite, so we always review our Marketing budget and try to cut costs superfluous. Did the cut in any of those costs influence this fall?
- Package Demo is bad - With the spreadsheet demos, the client already lowers and tests the Worksheet. In packages he needs to unzip the file before testing.
After raising all the hypotheses and trying to corroborate them, we move on to the next step, to draw up plans of action to mitigate the effects of these possible causes. Note that some causes have more than one plan of action. By mapping action plans with smaller tasks and splitting responsibilities to solve the problem, we have more speed in executing what we plan.
It's worth a quick and efficient run if you can not verify it. So we used the third step of the PDCA, the step of checking what was done, to follow the progress of the whole team during this process of solving the problem.
It is important to check the execution and results just to see if the problem has been solved or not. In our case, although all the action plans were completed, we found that only 3 of these plans were really important to increase the sale of these packages.
Because our Worksheet gives us some analysis charts, we also realize that we have drawn many action plans for a problem that would have been resolved more quickly if we had focused on the really relevant causes. This can happen, especially when thinking about business processes: we always work with hypotheses and, no matter how hard we do, we always have to try to cover all the possible edges.
In our case the problem has been solved, but that does not mean that there is no room for improvement. The PDCA is a method that aims at continuous improvement and, in the case of business processes, continuous improvement only means one thing: More sales!
So while solving your problems, continue running the PDCA Cycle in the other processes in your company and try to use it to understand which factors impact your sales and margin numbers the most.
This is one of the application cases of using our Worksheet our reality here of LUZ but you can use the PDCA Cycle for other bigger problems also like: Increase your margin by product / service, Increase your Sales, Improve your Negotiation among many other processes. If you need any help, you just need to comment down here to get an idea about it!
And if you want to use the PDCA method in an organized way, where you can control everything that happens in each Cycle, you can also use our PDCA Cycle Sheet!