Process Of Bench Marking
Basically benchmarking is treated as a structured procedure and it is best given through the development of a step by step model. The important part here is in which a proper structure gives the ways and means of conducting benchmarking but it should not be formulated in such a manner so as to create complex situations. The basic structure of any benchmarking procedure consists of the following five steps. These steps could then be changed according to the requirement of the organizations.
1. Element: This includes identifying the product, service or processes one wish to benchmark.
2. Aspect: This step includes identifying the aspects of the product, service or process, that one wishes to benchmark (e.g. if a product is benchmarked along with the market leader of the similar kind of product, then the similar aspects could be used to benchmark).
3. Scale: This uses the identified scale, e.g. if comparison is made along with the leader, then the similar scale of performance measurement could be used.
4. Score: This includes allocating score to each aspect, within the scale. For instance, the rating agencies making a scale and providing score against each aspect.
5. Benchmark: This is the final step where the comparison is done among the scores of each aspect with that of the leader.
Let us now see and describe, that will provide an idea as to how the process of benchmarking works. This easy model could be applied anywhere depending on the requirement of the organization.
Suppose various aspects associated to operations are to be benchmarked along with that of the leader. Simple table could be used to compare the results.
The aspects that involve staff, suppliers, etc. in the illustration could be measured keeping in mind set standards, that is to be benchmarked or whatever might be viable depending on the need. These could also be represented along with the help of charts or with graphical representations and the operational risk could be measured.
We can see that the Gap (Refer illustration) is identified. These gaps could then be filled through reformulating certain strategies of the organization and then the specified goal(s) of the organization could be met keeping in mind the target score.
This was an overview of the benchmarking process. In the same manner we can have different models of bench marking. Any kind of benchmarking procedure model should provide an adequate framework for the successful planning and execution of benchmarking exercise (Matters & Evans, 2007).
In the subsequent subsection we will learn a six-step benchmarking model. We do have a five step model also but here we will only see the six-step model as it seems to be best suited for all kinds of organizations.