Sound familiar? During the course of a quarterly business review, someone raises a question about the soundness of a certain process that’s common to all of the company’s frontline workers. But no one can answer the question put before the group. Everyone agrees, however, that finding an answer is important. To find it, an audit is necessary. The current process is laid out in a giant spreadsheet. That spreadsheet is turned into a checklist. Paper-based, of course.
You Know What Happens Next
A training session is then scheduled for all frontline workers to review the new audit and checklist. Management’s expectations for frontline workers are communicated in detail. They are made to understand just how serious this is to them, their safety, etc. Thus, the new audit comes to life. Compliance is good at first. Workers want to make sure they do what their bosses expect. The checklists start pouring in every week. Each question of the checklist is answered with sincerity.
In the first couple of weeks, managers make a real effort to review all the data coming in through the checklists. It’s a veritable mountain. The original question posed weeks back in that QBR is a serious one. And so, the weeks go by. By week four or five, however, the situation has completely changed. The added pressures of the current quarter have now become top priority for everyone on the management team. Collectively, management shifts its focus and resources to address these new problems. The burning question the new audit was conceived to address doesn’t seem so important now.
The checklists, however, don’t stop pouring in.
Week after week, month after month, they keep rolling in. An admin continues filing them away. In some cases, they may even be scanned before being warehoused. The workers notice. Not one of them has been asked a single question about what they’ve seen and learned since the new audit started. They think to themselves, “If no one cares about what I’m seeing, why should I? I’ve got other things to do to earn my paycheck.” The new audit, however, has become part of the job. So they keep doing it, week after week. Most workers do the minimum needed to complete it. Some may continue to complete it with sincerity as it’s part of their nature. But it doesn’t matter. Trend lines aren’t spotted. No one is held accountable and no action is taken to fix what may well be a busted process. The loop doesn’t close.
Close the Loop
We hear these stories every day in conversations with Plant & Site Managers, Directors, VPs and C-level decision makers at enterprises across industry—manufacturing, construction, oil and gas, transportation, etc.
We also hear in these conversations that managers acutely understand how burdensome audit and inspection busywork negatively impacts their frontline workers. There is a strong desire to change. But how? The off-the-shelf technologies that are easily put into categories like Human Capital Management (HCM) may contain part of the answer, but they don’t fully close that transparency loop. Many companies place their faith in large-scale, custom software builds. Those projects, however, can easily run into the millions. They also require constant care and attention to keep them relevant. Besides, creating a smartphone app around what used to be a paper-based assessment is only automation for the sake of automation. It doesn’t give the worker any new insight into his or her job. It doesn’t help them get sh*t done.
At Corvex Connected Worker™, we’ve found the answer in the unique technology toolkit we developed; one that addresses transparency, accountability, and action from both sides (worker and manager). Our new product, Checks™, focuses that technology on audits and inspections. Checks™ completely flips the sad paradigm we all know right on its head through the application of a number of different technologies including AI and machine learning.
If you’d like to learn more about Checks™ and its value, please keep on reading. We also encourage you to view the short demo from Ted Smith. See the technology for yourself as Ted demonstrates how Checks™ creates the transparency your frontline expects.
Demo of our Checks™ functionality.
If you’d like to talk to us one-on-one, we’re available for that too. Fill out the Demo Request form and we’ll be in touch shortly to schedule something for you and your team.