16. Budgets, simple norms and continuous improvement

Chapter 16


                                                                                                                                                      by: josavere


Before talking about continuous improvement, the urgent need to carry out Digital Transformation should be analyzed according to the type of industry and a careful review of the advances that can be implemented should be made. In the case of construction, for example, the use of Drones for preliminary and control analyses, Virtual Reality for new projects, Internet of Things to connect devices for different uses, Three-Dimensional Printing to build elements, Innovative Materials and Control Programs for administrative use and Predictive Analysis to improve efficiency and reduce costs, incorporating circular economy concepts to design the treatment of construction debris and user waste, reusing water, using renewable energies, family orchards and vertical gardens with production of nutrients. In addition, verify that the Sustainability standards are met, using the National BIM Strategy (Building Information Modeling) published by the Colombian government.

A good system of costs1 must serve as an element of planning to facilitate the processes as simulation, beginning with the results statement projected. To be "good" it must:

  • That it is appropriate for the particular case (it does not have the sense to use ABC costs for an industrial company because it does not take care of the plant capacity).
  • That it is clear and easy to understand for the users, especially for those who control it.
  • That presents opportune information,comparing with THE DASHBOARD..
  • That it allows us to apply the administration by exception that it induces us to occupy to us of the abnormal situations.
  • That it indicates clearly the variations negative so that does not become cost hidden.
  • In the case of industrial companies, it must relate the production costs to the capacity budgeted in agreement with the plan of value generation2.

In agreement with the strategies and the tactics to implement them, aiming at an objective of value generation we can assign the resources that in countable terms are costs or expenses and must leave the sales to arrive at a number specifies of profit, that satisfies the expectations with the shareholders and in which take shape all the activities to develop.

Benjamín Zander3, director of the Philharmonic Orchestra of Boston attributes his success to the optimism of his preparation to face life and says that leadership consists of forming you lead that accompany. The optimism must accompany by passion and method. "Passion without method is the chaos, and method if passion is the death", wise words that we must consider when we began to work with the tool called the Plan of Generation of Value, different from the budgets that must serve as a guide the centers of responsibility to contribute to the general mission of the company and to which, obviously, all must be subordinates.

When the companies initiate the learning of the planning systems and budgeting disciplines that are acquired with the repetitive and analytical exercise and are perfected with the feedback that becomes through pursuit, require an approximate cost that serves as a base to initiate the exercise.

A good estimation of the cost is essential and high-priority to elaborate the budgets and these, as well, constitute a good base to consider the costs and of fixing sale prices that facilitate the sensitivity analysis to us until finding the map course which we must follow to obtain the objective. Of there the necessity to do budgets affluent done.

Tad Leahy published a document that reproduced the titled magazine MANAGEMENT “the traps of the budgeting” in which it writes on the indirect effect of a bad budget done. I have taken it as its basis to indicate aspects of improvement in the elaboration of the budgets. He writes on which is not due to do, I say, to my way, which is due to do



a. To define the strategic plan: to design the strategies and to prepare the tactics for its implementation; thus we can assign the resources.

b. Using the suitable information of costs rejecting all the correctable errors (we cannot consecrate inefficiency). We must purify the information before using it and first of all, to measure the measurable thing and to think about the relation cost-I benefit.

c. To give active participation to the people in charge to facilitate that the managers become jumbled with him; take control of the objectives and assume the responsibility to execute them with the been suitable expenses.

d. Not to take them like unavoidable; if the circumstances change and the value generation is affected, it is due to reframing to look for the strategic target. The remuneration of the managers and executives must be based not solely on the performance evaluations and on results.

e. To give strategic nature to him. The macroeconomic conditions and the variables that were used for their elaboration can be altered by some circumstances. If it happens we must reevaluate the numbers.

f. To use suitable software which can facilitate the standardization of the information. One is due to obtain that it is simple, with an analytical application for the particular case. It must be appropriate and we must learn to use it.

g. It does not have to be confused with the business plan which must be realistic to combine risks and opportunities. The budget can be used as a motivator element and factor of evaluation.

h. To analyze the deviations judiciously. The important is that somebody takes care to investigate because and suggests remedial action.

i. Corporative culture: Like in general, the budgets, of some form imply the concept of "measurement" and to the executives do not like that "they measure them", is very common to find great obstacles in the first stages when the implementation of this discipline begins. It is difficult to take a step of outpost without the direct intervention of the president of the organization who, in the measurement that this convincing of its kindness, can impel it openly. 


A good guide to implementing the strategy to follow consists of carefully analyzing the matrix of margins of contribution and participation by lines, to see as the weighted average can be improved.

The strategy must become a set of simple rules5.

KATHLEEN M. EISENHARDT AND DONAL N. SULL, professors of the University of Stanford and Harvard Business School respectively, in his I articulate "the importance of the simple rules" present five great categories: 

A. HOW TO DO: are oriented to organize to the executives in the search of opportunities, examples:

  • To use the telephone directory of each city.
  • To complement the use of motors search on the Internet.
  • To make specific appointments using email and other means.

 B. RULES LIMIT: serve to select quickly in the middle of multiple opportunities, examples:

  • Our potential client must display financial statements.
  • We do not take care of the countries of Africa.
  • We do not take care of orders of 2,000 meters. 

C. PRIORITY RULES: help to define an order for allocation of resources, examples:

  • Initially, we will take care of the companies located in the five great capitals.
  • The interest to us plus manufacture products.
  • Preferential we will use transports terrestrial. 

D. OF SYNCHRONIZATION: help to connect the opportunities by means of a coordination of the different areas from the company, examples:

  • Investigation and Development must elaborate a chronogram of the launching of new products involving those who must be committed. 

E. OF EXIT: help to discard passed opportunities, example:

  • If during three years consecutive we did not fulfill certain goals with a particular product we retired of our portfolio. 

So that one regulates is simple does not have to be:

a. Ample: "we encouraged the qualification of our personnel".
b. Vague: "we will not sell payer bad clients to him".
c. Absurd: "we sell solely clients who we pruned to control".
d. It expires:
"our clients are small industrialists".

The rules often arise from the experience and from the errors. All almost is in the head of the personnel; lack to turn them institutional knowledge properly formalized.

All the simple actions of presupuestación and norms must orient us to the universal pattern consecrated in 9000 norm ISO version 2.000: "The continuous improvement".

The processes, in addition to the PHVA (to glide, to do, to verify, and to act), must have an objective and an action of improvement. 

TO GLIDE: while greater it is the proportion of time dedicated to judicious planning, less taking doing like the effect of the greater productivity than can be obtained. Our culture this very oriented when doing and despises the planning; almost that we condemn a person if it is being documented or it been thinking. "One goes doing nothing".

That form to act kind against the good execution and in fact affects the quality with the countable complicity that practically ignores the hidden costs or of non-quality which would have to be like negative variations that affect the financial results, in the last instance, the true measurer of the generation of value in the measurement that the assets rent more than the capital cost (with an objective measurement that considers the expenses able to be capitalized). EVAC. 

WHAT DOES: the planning takes a suitable method to us that reduces the run time and guarantees to fulfill the maximum objective in trade terms: the satisfaction of the client receiving opportunely the amount that it asked for with the specifications that requested.

To reduce the run time is equivalent to lower costs of manual labor, indirect costs of manufacture, trim times of delivery, and accelerating the recovery of the costs and the utility of the order. Let us remember an axiomatic principle in finances: "the money is worth based on the time".

Doing implies knowledge, the fruit of the selection, qualification, attitude, dedication, and level of motivation of the people who execute processes. Of there the great importance which we must give the human resource trying its personal growth and improving its quality of life, which takes to us to live the moment; as the fruit comes to the concentration and this one as well, it takes to us to work conscientiously and to obtain efficiency (effectiveness6 with quality and generation of value). 

TO VERIFY: it implies measurement. Lately, a very wise phrase has made race: "what improvement is not moderate not", which summarizes the concept.

In life, we must much more measure all the measurable and in the companies. These measurements must periodically register as it demonstrates verifiable of the action of continuous improvement, via the productivity. It must be done using the Bench Marking or comparison with the companies of the world, a basic tool to face the globalización and to remove started off to him. 

TO ACT: the term makes relation to all the pertinent activities to learn of the error and to perfect the productive processes, including the administrative personnel, where inefficiency by the great difficulty practical shines generally to measure its efficiency. For that reason, he is urgent, periodically to make evaluations of the performance of the executive personnel and office. In the production plant, it is easier to quantify.

In order to clear all the plan of management of the quality, the company must implement the commando7 board where the strategic plan takes shape in indicators that it served departure the elaboration as the budgets, the design of the simple norms, the plan of pursuit, and the remedial actions.

Finally, it must disclose with all amplitude, involving all the people, to his measurement, and complement with a policy of risk wages, respecting basic ones that allow a worthy life in agreement with the position which they carry out.



1. See: cost for high management 
2. To Generate Value: all activities that we do and that the client this arranging to pay by her.
3. Better lecturer of Expo-management, 2003.
4. He consists of defining an objective and identifying the assets and the actions to obtain it.
5. The strategy of simple rules emphasizes the processes of nails and develops a pattern that gives form them (they serve as a guide).
6. Effectiveness: to fulfill the objective without generating value.
7. See Strategic Finances

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