Agile Approach to Innovation & Ideation

Agile Approach to Innovation & Ideation

As organizations grow to critical mass it is often hard to derive and sustain the types of changes that are necessary to remain competitive. The larger and more structured the organization, typically the less entrepreneurial, nimble and adaptable they are to necessary change. Inability to design, develop and/or launch new initiatives; resistance to new technology, ideas or innovations regardless of the benefit; and radical resistance to reforming past practices no matter how obsolete are clear signs that your organization may be in this state.

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Organizing Businesses for Speed & Efficiency

Organizing Businesses for Speed & Efficiency

Starr & Associates offers enterprise-level data mining, analytics and intelligence tools. We focus on how businesses can implement strategies that reduce costs while still helping you improve efficiency. Industries served include healthcare, energy, manufacturing, telecommunications, financial services, technology and the public sector.

Enterprise Level Functional Agility Assessment

The first step toward helping you make your organization more efficient is to conduct a thorough assessment of it. This includes deployment of statistical, data, engineering, simulation and other business intelligence tools used as we scan your company structure. In the process, we provide you with reports and suggest the changes you can make toward improving your operations.

Business Process Assessment and Improvement

A business process assessment provides you insights on how you can become more efficient. This preliminary step leads to making your company more effective as you use BPM (Business Process Management) tools to identify and eliminate inefficiencies. Another reason for using these evaluation utilities is for better division of project segments. It also can fine-tune online order placing steps that improve customer services.

Business Process Management

Your company probably has processes that are repeated again and again, but how can the data from those processes be transformed and utilized? The answer is simple— BPM (Business Process Management). Businesses work with various materials and information. Finding a way to pull data from those areas to make usable reports can help every aspect of a business and speed up the processes. By using BPM, data can be adequately analyzed and applied.

BPM breaks down the different processes used at the core of a company and takes a deeper look at how different processes impact each other. While filtering through the data, efficiencies and inefficiencies can be found, and processes can be improved, making your company more effective.

Most companies want to find ways to reduce costs as they make changes. A primary way of reducing expenses is using business process outsourcing. Hiring freelance and contract workers can save your organization money because they will use their own equipment and not yours. 

Organizational Redesign

When your company grows and changes, it usually requires an organizational design. You can liken this to moving into a new home or remodeling your existing one. This involves a certain formula for successful project completion that will help you achieve all your business goals.

For instance, you might revamp your organizational chart to focus on operations while leaving the “who” open. This process can prevent you from limiting project duties to only certain people, and it could help you meet all your deadlines even if the original persons assigned are temporarily unavailable. In addition to talent management, you can identify the functions that will improve communication, branding, innovations and more. Positioning of core operations will allow you to resume business at a higher level of performance.

Organizational Realignment and Transformation

When transforming your business to meet the ever-changing demands of your customers, the realignment helps you remain in unity. When everyone in your organization shares the same understanding of your company’s purpose, it increases the likelihood of success.

This happens as you develop strategies and define goals while implementing effective steps toward success as the staff you employ becomes more aligned with your mission statement. Much of this comes with educating your workers as to why certain tasks or projects are necessary and eliminating actions proven to provide no benefit while highlighting ones that do.
Contact Starr & Associates for assistance with improving business efficiency and reducing costs.

 

Machine Learning 101: Essential for the Modern Business

Machine Learning 101: Essential for the Modern Business

Today, machine learning is becoming incredibly important for businesses hoping to remain competitive. From shipping and logistics to the medical industry, machine learning is being used to improve upon products and processes. Here’s what you need to know about integrating machine learning into your organization’s infrastructure.

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So, You Are Thinking About Integrating Machine Learning Into Your Business Process?

By: Dmitriy

When most people think of ML, they imagine a team of data scientists, high overhead costs for computer hardware and timelines that stretch into quarters or a year before seeing results. But today the market is filled with automation tools and cloud-based computing power. ML, AI, and Big Data are available more than ever. It is now easier for medium to large-size businesses to start using and applying these advancements in business intelligence technology to grow and improve their business.

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Innovation, The Untapped Human

28 Jan 2019 Innovation

Innovation may be the latest and hottest buzz word, but its roots are by no means new. Innovation is synonymous with Human and all you must do is look around to see the far-reaching effects of human ingenuity and innovation. From things as simple as the wheel to the high-tech gadgets that both control and assist our lives. Knowing where the innovative spirit comes from and how to extract it, could very well be the most powerful and influential skill you could develop as a leader.

So why is innovation so “hard”? Why do companies struggle to break the “glass ceiling” or find their way “out of the box”? Turns out, there is A LOT to it. Our behavioral patterns are determined by a quagmire of personal experience, driven by societal and cultural norms, mixed with the fundamental nature of humans that both propel us and control us. The combinations are infinite, and the outcomes are incredibly broad on many spectrums. The forces of good and evil, the balance of control and freedom, the perception of time gained and time lost, our innate willingness to help others, and our incredibly vast interests, abilities, and passions that are as unique as our DNA will continue to drive destruction and creation as long as humans walk the earth.

So, I’ll ask you again, why do we struggle with Innovation if it’s a part of who we are? My most vague, yet most fundamentally accurate answer is “balance.”. Balance keeps us both where we are and where we want to be. I believe we have the power to decide which side of balance we want to be on, both as individuals and as businesses. To invoke change, we must upset the balance that exists, we must make waves in the status-quo, ignite a fire in the hearts and minds of humans and it must be constant, relentless, and void of direction.

This is by no means, easy, but a conscious understanding of what “levers” to pull is certainly helpful. Here are five of some of the most fundamental and obvious tendencies of humans that we need to understand, accept, and account for when driving towards an innovative culture.

1. The path of least resistance – We humans tend to take the easy way out. We take the shortest or quickest way home, we constantly seek better, easier, and more efficient ways to work, cook, lose weight, and just about anything else we get into. You could see how this would be an asset in the struggle to innovate.
2. Creatures of habit – Counter to our need to take the path of least resistance, we’re also wired to settle into the habits that have been created for us or that we have created for ourselves. This tends to hurt our drive for innovation.
3. Action and Reaction – The fundamental basis for how humans learn can be explained with action and reaction. Our behavior and actions are altered and modified from the moment we are born. Presented with a favorable reaction, we tend to perpetuate our actions. To the contrary, we tend to reduce or hide the actions that aren’t well received from our reactive forces.
4. Fear itself– Another side effect of action and reaction is fear. If the reactions are almost always negative or have a negative social component, fear keeps us from acting. Fear is all around us in one form or another. It manipulates us into buying products and services, it suppresses our opinions, it forces us to do things we hate for a lifetime, and it keeps us from creating the lives we are meant to live. Respecting fear is necessary, but suppressing it at the right time can have powerful ramifications.
5. Narcissism lives in all of us – We all have it, some more than others, but make no mistake. “Leaders” in any organization are often the biggest offenders of letting their narcissism run wild. A false sense of power tends to amplify narcissism without people even realizing the damage they are doing to their culture. As with any of these traits, anyone interested in harnessing the power of humans must first recognize this in themselves.

We could argue that law enforcement, is reactive in nature because of the ingenuity that lives within humans who don’t conform, who don’t live in fear of consequences, who seek a different path, who seek an easier path, and who have a keen sense of action and reaction within the system in which they live. The traits, talents, perceptions and personal experience of leading-edge criminals is arguably the very thing that’s missing from the people that live within your organization. No, I’m not advocating you hire criminals, but I am almost certain that those same attributes are alive and well inside all of us. Knowing what they are, how to disrupt or incite them, and who to apply it too, is arguably the most powerful tool of any leader. But in the face of innovation, does “leader” carry the same definition?

The traditional “leader” is best identified by their ability to get people to do what needs to be done. An Innovation leader, however, must be able to get people to do things that haven’t been done before. This is a subtle but important distinction since the combinations for success are far less obvious when it comes to innovation. Being able to distinguish one’s self as a leader in innovation is a tall order and one that brings about a great deal of self-reflection, faith, and understanding to both embrace and oppose the tendencies of nature.

Should We Transform Our Business to the Cloud?

Should We Transform Our Business to the Cloud?

Using cloud solutions opens your workforce to using virtually any Internet-connected device to access and process data. That means everyone gets to use the computing tool with which they feel most comfortable whether it’s the office’s iPads or a Windows computer. Another benefit is your office can purchase exactly the number of licenses it requires, then add to it as it hires office staff.

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