BENCHMARKING – WHAT without HOW is an incomplete agenda

Benchmarking gained popularity in the early 1990s with Robert Camp’s best selling book, Benchmarking – The search for industry best practices that lead to superior performance. Management consultants and Indian industry jumped on to the bandwagon in haste and missed the point completely. In their eagerness to do quick business, consultants did not bother to read Camp’s book. Nevertheless, all promoted benchmarking.

Unfortunately, the version that consultants presented did not match Camp’s invaluable thesis. As a first step, the title of his book should be read “carefully”. Camp advocates the adoption of ‘industry best practices’. Practices.

What did we chase? We chased figures and numbers, i.e. Benchmarks. Not Practices.

In order to initiate benchmarking, we must recognize that companies are essentially a collection of people. Next, these people must agree to learn from one another. In other words – a cultural change has to take place. Thirdly, benchmarking must be clearly understood as a process; a system. Finally, we must understand the link between benchmarking and business strategy.

Qimpro’s experience and research indicates that benchmarking failed because of lack of focus. The focus was on WHAT.

“WHAT without HOW is an incomplete agenda.” says Suresh Lulla, Founder and CEO, BestPrax Club.

It’s the constant effort of the BestPrax Blog team to bring to its readers best practices from around the globe. Your feedback and comments will be highly valued.

Please use the comments section below to let us know what you feel.

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