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Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement
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Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement

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Strategies for continuous improvement for information development teams. Presented by Marta Rauch as a webinar for the Society for Technical Communication (STC) in 2011 and 2012.

Strategies for continuous improvement for information development teams. Presented by Marta Rauch as a webinar for the Society for Technical Communication (STC) in 2011 and 2012.

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  • 1. <Insert Picture Here>Successful Strategies for Continuous ImprovementMarta Rauch, STC Webinar, January 31, 2012Follow me: @martarauch +martarauch martarauch
  • 2. Agenda • Initiatives program: a powerful strategy for continuous improvement • Proven process for starting an initiatives program • Tips for 3 initiatives that produce results:  Save time  Improve quality  Lower costs  Increase revenue • Best practices • Q&A (chat questions welcome any time)Marta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 2
  • 3. Chat QuestionWhat is the one most frustrating issue with your doc projects that could benefit from continuous improvement?Please submit your answer using the chat feature. 3
  • 4. Effective Strategy: an Initiatives Program • Continuous improvement for products and processes • Scales to large and small groups • Works well with remote teams • Increases collaboration, idea sharing, morale • Enhances skill sets, on-the-job learning • Adds value to the organization • Key: Meets business needs – Reduce costs – Raise efficiency – Improve satisfaction – Increase revenueMarta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 4
  • 5. Process for Starting an Initiatives Program (1) 1. Get executive buy in 2. Analyze business requirements – what does your company need, what can move it forward? 3. Plan strategic initiative topics that meet business needs: – Reduce costs – Raise efficiency – Improve customer satisfaction – Increase revenue 4. Plan metrics to track improvement 5. Communicate strategy to team, list initiative topicsMarta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 5
  • 6. Process for Starting an Initiatives Program (2) 6. Let Individuals pick initiatives they want to work on 7. If appropriate, include initiatives on performance goals 8. Form small groups to work on initiatives as time allows 9. Set team goals, plan, and dates; divvy up tasks 10. Track initiative progress on an internal wiki 11. Capture data to measure improvement, track results 12. Communicate success 13. Plan and implement next initiativesMarta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 6
  • 7. Initiative #1: Improve Efficiency Challenge: More deliverables in less time Solution: XML, CMS, and Automation initiativeMarta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 7
  • 8. Best Practice: Break Down Tasks Break down large tasks into smaller initiatives: • Standards for folders, files • Templates, style sheets • Tools research • Conversion • Quality testing • Tools training • Wiki for FAQ, troubleshooting • User’s guide, best practicesMarta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 8
  • 9. Result: Deliver More in Less Time One tool, multiple outputs, more quickly: • Production and formatting down 47% • Troubleshooting down 85% • Translation time down 90%Marta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 9
  • 10. Initiative #2: Improve Quality Challenge: Better understanding of customers to enhance user experience Solution: Customer Partnering initiativeMarta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 10
  • 11. Tip: Get Feedback on User Assistance http://imindmap.com/Marta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 11
  • 12. Tip: Get Feedback on Mobile ContentMarta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 12
  • 13. Tip: Get Feedback on Online Communities Help 2.0 features: • Gamification • Point System • Badges • Discussions • RSS • Cloud tags • Comments • RatingsMarta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 13
  • 14. Tip: Get Feedback on Social MediaMarta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 14
  • 15. What Customers Say “We appreciate the effort that goes in to this program, since documentation is not as well addressed with most vendors.” “This program is very unique, and we feel it is beneficial.” ―Customer PartnersMarta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 15
  • 16. Result: Increased Quality • Customers have the information they need • Reduced tech support calls • Opportunity for increased sales, revenueMarta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 16
  • 17. Initiative #3: Improve Time/Cost Challenge: Reduce translation budget, translate more files, more quickly Solution: Word-reduction initiativeMarta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 17
  • 18. Tip: It Pays to Reduce Words Our own estimated savings for one 300-page guide, 240 words per page, 13 languages % Words Savings per Savings for All Reduced Document Languages 10% $2,880 $37,440 20% $5,760 $74,880 30% $8,640 $112,320 40% $11,520 $149,760 50% $14,400 $187,200Marta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 18
  • 19. Word Reduction Examples Original Word-reduced as well as and at the same time as simultaneously in order to to the following these will be is delete an existing delete an viewing an option viewing options click Save to save settings click SaveMarta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 19
  • 20. Word-reduction Activity Original Word-reduced a single more than one create a new a combination of different enter an appropriate file name click either Yes or No to edit a spreadsheet, do the following:Marta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 20
  • 21. Word-reduction Activity Original Word-reduced a single a (or an) more than one create a new a combination of different enter an appropriate file name click either Yes or No to edit a spreadsheet, do the following:Marta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 21
  • 22. Word-reduction Activity Original Word-reduced a single a (or an) more than one multiple create a new a combination of different enter an appropriate file name click either Yes or No to edit a spreadsheet, do the following:Marta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 22
  • 23. Word-reduction Activity Original Word-reduced a single a (or an) more than one multiple create a new create a combination of different enter an appropriate file name click either Yes or No to edit a spreadsheet, do the following:Marta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 23
  • 24. Word-reduction Activity Original Word-reduced a single a (or an) more than one multiple create a new create a combination of different a combination of enter an appropriate file name click either Yes or No to edit a spreadsheet, do the following:Marta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 24
  • 25. Word-reduction Activity Original Word-reduced a single a (or an) more than one multiple create a new create a combination of different a combination of enter an appropriate file enter a file name name click either Yes or No to edit a spreadsheet, do the following:Marta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 25
  • 26. Word-reduction ActivityOriginal Word-reduceda single a (or an)more than one multiplecreate a new createa combination of different a combination ofenter an appropriate file enter a file namenameclick either Yes or No click Yes or Noto edit a spreadsheet, dothe following: 26
  • 27. Word-reduction ActivityOriginal Word-reduceda single a (or an)more than one multiplecreate a new createa combination of different a combination ofenter an appropriate file enter a file namenameclick either Yes or No click Yes or Noto edit a spreadsheet, do to edit spreadsheets:the following: 27
  • 28. Result: Reduced Time and Costs, Increased Revenue • Reduced costs by 24% per language, per release • Improved usability • Faster to market • Sales in new geographies • Increased revenueMarta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 28
  • 29. Initiatives Summary XML, CMS, and Automation: Less: Time, cost More: Productivity, deliverable formats Customer Partnering: Less: Support calls, costs More: Customer satisfaction, quality, revenue Word Reduction: Less: Time, cost More: Languages, countries, revenueMarta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 29
  • 30. Best Practices for a Successful Initiative Program 1. Welcome all 6. Participation as time suggestions permits 2. Ensure initiatives 7. Track project status reflect business 8. Collect and analyze data needs to validate effectiveness 3. Self-selection 9. Communicate success 4. Performance goals 10. Continue implementing 5. Primary focus on new initiatives deliverablesMarta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 30
  • 31. Chat QuestionWhat are thetop improvementsyou heard abouttoday thatyoud like to implementin your own doc projects?Please submit your answerusing the chat feature. 31
  • 32. Tips for Measuring Success Track usage with web analytics:  Downloads  Click-maps  Countries  Entry and exit pages  Reports, trends Other measures:  Usability tests  Productivity metrics  Forum data, tech support calls  Online surveys, SurveyMonkeyMarta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 32
  • 33. Best Practice: Accessibility  Accessibility guidelines  Alternative text  Build in to template  Keyboard equivalents  Screen readers  Accessibility checker  Usability testsMarta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 33
  • 34. Q U E S T I O N S & A N S W E R SMarta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 34
  • 35. Follow me: • Twitter: martarauch • LinkedIn: martarauch • Google+: +martarauch Check out my articles for additional information: • STC Intercom: http://intercom.stc.org/2011/11/twelve-key-mobile-usability- guidelines-you-need-to-implement-now/ • CIDM Best Practices: http://www.infomanagementcenter.com/ • STC Intercom: http://intercom.stc.org/2011/11/twelve-key-mobile-usability- guidelines-you-need-to-implement-now/ • Writers UA: http://www.writersua.com/articles/continuous/index.htmlMarta Rauch, “Successful Strategies for Continuous Improvement,” STC Webinar, 1/31/2012. Copyright 2012. 35