How Consulting is Different in the Age of COVID
COVID-19 has changed every workplace to varying degrees. Some industries, like hospitality, have experienced wholesale change. Others have shifted, quite abruptly, to remote work. Still others, like most of our clients, have undergone operational changes that allow them to get the job done safely. Many have seen productivity and efficiency drop as a result of new, COVID-related protocols and procedures.
Our business has had to make changes because of the pandemic, too. We’ve had to pivot and adapt to new realities, just like our clients have had to do. For us, and we daresay for you as well, it’s about taking a hard look at our operations and making them as efficient and swift — and safe — as possible. It’s necessary to do so in order to not just survive in this new economic landscape, but to thrive.
Necessary changes for this new normal
At USC Consulting Group, we don’t just sell our service. We sell our methodology. It’s what sets us apart. We’ve built more than half a century on a tried-and-true methodology. Our goal is to effect operational change and efficiencies for our clients. It’s what we do, and if we do say so ourselves, we do it well. However, to gain greater operational efficiency in this economic climate, you need it yesterday.
The good news is, we are nimble enough to pivot in response to these changing conditions. We’ve adapted and streamlined our own processes to get you the help you need now. Here’s how we work in a nutshell:
Listen. The first thing we do is sit down and listen to our clients. Even though we’ve been doing this for over a half century, we don’t come in thinking we have all the answers or know what your issues are. We want to understand from your perspective what challenges, bottlenecks and stumbling blocks you are facing.
Experience your operation for ourselves. We are not about sitting in the CEO’s office and coming up with solutions from a distance. We get into your operation and see it with our own eyes. We talk to frontline workers. Do feasibility studies. Importantly, we gain understanding at the point of execution on the frontlines. Our philosophy is, nobody knows the job better than the person who has been doing it every day. We gain invaluable insight from your workers on the shopfloor and use that insight to craft solutions that will work for your unique needs and challenges.
Get to work. We craft a collaborative approach to get after what we all think is there to get — greater efficiency, streamlined processes and the ability to do more with less.
That’s our simple, go-to business model, put into warp drive for the immediacy of today’s economy.
Hidden opportunities can be the whole ball of wax when it comes to increasing your efficiency and allowing you to do more with the assets you already have. We’re talking about ferreting out efficiencies in your operation that you’re not aware of. You may not be seeing the forest for the trees. We come in with fresh eyes and can uncover things you didn’t even know were there. Nine times out of ten, we find hidden opportunities for efficiency by looking at procedures that are generally accepted as “just the way things are.” A few examples:
- Excessive cycle time. Cycle time to produce a part could be reduced by redistributing the work between processes so that more of the activities take place in parallel vs. in series.
- Excessive time for changeovers on a machine. There are activities that could be started and even completed before the changeover starts.
We start the process of finding hidden opportunities by getting the answers to a few questions. Where is the problem? Is it technical or tactical? Is your goal feasible?
If it’s technical, maybe it’s time to bring in the engineers to improve on your machines’ functions. If it’s tactical, we look at your processes, the way you’re using those machines, to find those hidden efficiencies.
We also take a hard look at the feasibility of your goal. Can we reasonably get you there with the assets you have? Sometimes the answer is no. Sometimes we can split the difference and get you close to the goal. Sometimes we can hit and even exceed that goal.
Bottom line: At USCCG, we understand you need triage now, not a lengthy study into your business. So we’ve adapted our business process to get you the help you need more quickly. We will hit the ground running so you can meet your customers’ needs.
If you’re interested in finding out more about how USC Consulting Group works, and what we can do for your business, please get in touch. That call today could lead to a more efficient operation tomorrow.
For more information, read our free eBook, “Times Have Changed. USC Consulting Group Can Help You Adapt.”