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If our processes can become more predictive, agile and collaborative, we can increase our business productivity

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Extensive adopters of smarter working practices. Compared to other companies, outperformers are more than three times as likely to have adopted smarter working practices. Souce: IBM Institute for Business Value

Productivity Management

If today is an average workday, you could lose about an hour of time trying to get something done.

Employees spend 25 percent of their time just looking for information. People frequently use the wrong information to make decisions, requiring rework. And the economic downturn brings an even greater urgency to improve the way businesses manage productivity.

Yet you probably work smarter today than you did a few years ago—or even last year. Technology can significantly increase productivity management and reduce costs. The rise in globalization opens access to new talent, expertise and resources that have energized businesses. Social networking capabilities enable us to tap into partner and customer thinking. And people increasingly have ubiquitous access to their applications, information and resources.

According to a recent study by the IBM Institute of Business Value, leading organizations use smarter working practices more extensively than lower-performing peers, resulting in greater efficiency and increased growth. They employ systems and practices that encourage collaboration among employees, customers and partners, and foster the creativity and problem-solving that enable the very act of enterprise.

A series of conversations for a smarter planet

Extensive adopters of smarter working practices. Compared to other companies, outperformers are more than three times as likely to have adopted smarter working practices. Souce: IBM Institute for Business Value


Chart and graphic: Productivity Confidence Index (PCI) as of march 2009. The i4cp Productivity Confidence Index (PCI) keeps  tabs on workfoce productivity forecasts 
among organizations.  It is based on whether companies believe employee productivity will rise, fall, or stay the same over the next six months. 53% say productivity will increase. 32,2% believe it will stay the same. 14,8% believe it will decrease. Hi-tech/Telecom 3,2. Construction 6,4. Consumer goods 8,3. Retail 13,6. Entertainment/Hospitality 14,0%. Nonprofit 14,7%. Manufacturing 15,4%. Consulting 18,5. Other/Not specified 19,5. Distribution 21,4. Education 22,2. Financial services/Banking 26,1. Transportation 28,3. Pharma/Biotech/Medical device 29,3. Energy/Utilities 32,0. Business services 32,0. Food products 40,0. Hospital/Healthcare/Insurance 43,5. Government -25,0. All respondents 20,2. Figure 2 - PCI scores by industry with a minimum of five organizations responding.


These organizations are getting smarter about managing productivity

Productivity management helps these three organizations work smarter.

Connecting people to drive productivity
Celina Insurance, a U.S. multi-line property and casualty insurance firm, uses online collaboration tools like "chat" to connect its independent insurance agents and underwriters, reducing policy turnaround time from weeks to days.

The Salvation Army implemented a Web-based collaboration infrastructure across 118 countries that connects volunteers, supplies and relief coordination activities. This has helped response time in a number of emergency situations, such as terrorist attacks, flooding, and earthquakes by facilitating donations and coordinating relief efforts.

Productivity management helps these three organizations work smarter.

Monitoring all points of the process
IBM is helping Norwegian oil and gas company StatoilHydro use sensors and telemetry to monitor conditions in real time. By pooling all of the sensory data from fields and rigs and combining it with 3-D visualization, employees can make smarter decisions. Benefits include an expected 5% increase in production and a 30% decrease in costs.

Flexing a supply chain
Yansha, a regional Chinese retailer of upscale brands, deployed a first-of-its-kind SOA-based supply chain platform from IBM for its employees and 1,800 suppliers. They can get a real time performance view into their supply chain...and lead times improved from 2.5 days to 4.5 hours.

Working in real time
Danone, the world's leading maker of fresh dairy products, can now react dynamically to key market changes. Danone's planners work smarter making real time adjustments that are interconnected to the production process and improved critical key performance indicators from days to hours.


Collaboration is at the center of productivity management.

You need to open your business to the world
Collaborate with partners. Get insights from suppliers anywhere.

How productive will we be in the future?

  • Within six years, workers will collaborate 80% of their time
  • Work will flow seamlessly, fluidly, across fully connected and visible processes
  • Work increasingly will involve external partners
  • Agility will become a key performance metric
  • Pro-active processes will be strengthened with predictive capabilities
  • Work will not be centered on an organization but on a community of people
  • Batch processing will be forgotten; real time will be the norm

What do you think? How much time do you lose per week due to process inefficiency? Take our poll.


If you have $5,000 to invest, how do you search for information on where to invest it?

Internet search
Friends or family
Your local bank branch