Best Method for Reducing Workplace Errors

Keeping your employees operating efficiently and error-free is a big challenge – especially today with tight budgets and increased regulations. This short video provides important facts for any of you looking for ways to improve the performance of your workforce.

What would you guess is the most effective method for reducing routine task errors ?

Learn what scientific research shows about the best way to prevent routine task errors and how the results surprised even the researchers!

What would you guess is the most effective method for reducing routine task errors ?
Is it:

  1. Employee Skills 
  2. Formal Training Methods 
  3. Good standard operating procedures

Not sure?

A 2006 study published in the scientific Journal of Human Factors not only answers the question but overturns some common myths about employee training and performance improvement.

Using controlled laboratory tests, two researchers compared workers’ speed and error rate when using two different step sequences to perform the same task. (The researchers were Michael Byrne with Rice University, and Elizabeth Davis with the University of Texas. Their findings are published in the article “Task Structure and Post-Completion Errors in the Execution of a Routine Procedure” in the Journal of Human Factors (2006)

They also compared the effectiveness of “reprimand, re-instruction, and praise” methods for reducing errors and improving task performance.

What they found even surprised them! None of the “motivational” or retraining methods reliably improved performance speed or accuracy. The group that consistently outperformed the others was the one that followed a written procedure. The best step sequence turned out to be the most important factor for improving performance!

These laboratory tests PROVED that simply defining a good, well-thought out procedure was the more effective in reducing errors that retraining or any other approach.

The business case for creating clear, easy-to-follow standard operating procedures hard to ignore. Here’s an actual example from one of our customers:

This company had an unusually high error rate in their direct mail group that varied widely from person to person.
After observing their STAR performer, they captured everything into a procedure which enabled them to standardize their best performer’s practices across the entire workgroup. After implementing the procedure, their error rate dropped significantly, which they estimated saved them over $360,000 just in one year.

So, what does this mean for you?

If done right, standard operating procedures can be an effective tool for preventing and reducing errors. 

And we’re not talking about the traditional “sop manual” that sits on a shelf. What we’re talking about is something different. An SOP “system” that gets used and enables you to DRIVE the performance that you want.

If you’d like more information about how to create the kind of SOPs that will turn even average performers into overachievers, COMPROSE can help. We provide a proven methodology, specialized software, and tons of expert advice.

Click her to read client success stories:


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