Process Map and defining KPIs

silver ring

Involved In Discussions

I have two questions. I know something, but what I know, needs improvement.

1) How to define key QMS processes and establish a process map ?
2) How to define key process indicators both for effectivity and productivity? Is there a nice software to track KPIs and enter data?


Steve Prevette

Deming Disciple
Staff member
Super Moderator
Re: Process Map and KPIs

On establishing KPI's, there are some ideas in a presentation I wrote at http :// www. efcog .org /wg/esh_es/Statistical_Process_Control/docs/Choosing_performance_indicators_Day_One.pdf DEAD LINK UNLINKED (404)

As far as software, there are many commerical products out there, but I find that a savvy user of Microsoft Excel will be able to do what the products do, with more flexibility, and without the expense.
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tony wardle

Registered Visitor
Here is my take on this - and it worked for me.
Process mapping - use a protocol and stick to it. Example - an oval is a start and end point. A block is a process without any decisions. A diamond is a decision point. Make sure the loop is closed. With this, even if the verbage is wrong, the flow concept can be understood and followed. Keep the verbage to minimum, and where a database, document or anything else is referenced, make this clear, so that you are all looking at the same data. There must be no guess work.
Start with the big picture and little detail, and as problems dictate, move to make the detail more descriptive.
Rather call the process map a Value Stream Map. Look at the process and determine what adds value and what does not. You would be surprised at the work we do for no good reason, and how much defect can be introduced, by doing redundant steps.
Of utmost importance - say what you do, and do what you say. Most people write up process maps in a way that they hope things will work. Fairy tales belong at school, not in business. The key processes you are looking for will come out of two things - 1. Your big picture overview, and 2. The areas where things go wrong. Things go wrong where either we allow them to (ie insufficient checking or attention) or where there are grey areas for undertanding or decision making. The "QMS processes" belong to the whole plant - accounts and sales included. The Quality Manager is only a scorekeeper. He or she doesnt make quality, but measures it and reports where deficiencies exist - and of course the CR will demand that these are fixed via ARs - CARs or PARs.
As for KPIs, I did the following. I had each department submit a KPI. What was on it didnt matter. What mattered was that they got in the habit of scoring themselves. Then I looked at the things that added value. Example - we used to measure efficiency - how long a mahine ran without stopping. I changed this to effectiveness. The KPI now had three measurements - Up time, scrap value and effectiveness as a ratio of up time vs scrap. This was converted from hours and percentages to dollars and cents.
As the KPIs progressed, certain things never changed, they were always good. I dropped these Certain things were never measured, but were out of control - example - waste. I added these. Then, I took the measurements and played around with ratios to exhibit dependancies. I invited maintenance, RandD, finance, sales etc. to comment on production and vice versa. Soon - each department had a KPI that meant something to everyone, and had value to everyone. Amazing how, - when finance realise their impact on production, and sales on finance and so on - the team starts to come together to find solutions and how the blame game stops.
We now discuss these KPIs weekly, - for an hour or so - with each area having their turn each week on a rotational basis. Has this added value? - absolutely. We use Xcel for the KPIs and deposit these as attachments into a intranet. Interestingly, we can tie up abseentism trends with quality and with productivity etc.
Last word on KPIs - these are living things - some measurents should be done everymonth - every year. Others will change from year to year, dependant on your business, economic factors etc. And dont do this for the auditor or for looks good value - do this to add value to your business.


Captain Nice
Staff member
On establishing KPI's, there are some ideas in a presentation I wrote at http :// www. efcog .org /wg/esh_es/Statistical_Process_Control/docs/Choosing_performance_indicators_Day_One.pdf DEAD LINK UNLINKED (404)
Is the .pdf available somewhere now by chance?


Involved In Discussions
Should ALL macro processes, processes, sub-processes, have performance measurement indicators?

In theory, all processes should be monitored as part of the PDCA (or DMAIC) cycle.

And Turtle Diagrams or SIPOC all will have areas to show how to measure proccess performance.

But that is all fine and dandy, but in reality, Process Measurement can be near impossible to measure without adequate machines or software, or a LOT of work (creating records) which will be an enormour bureaucracy which may in fact, itself DECREASE process performance, as Process Owners will need to stop workflow all the time to record stuff, and then dedicate extra time to put those records into a spreadsheet (or a KPI system) to get graphs, and such.

So... can a company just decide to not measure a process performance? Not even tell in the Process documentation how it's measured?


A Sea of Statistics
regardless of software chosen...(given its many favorite is Visio), in its simplest form establishing KPIs, is a collaborative, team effort, frequently based upon much statistical data and analysis...

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