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Business applications and data analytics can make business lean

You have to be smart to configure an enterprise resource planning system to cut away the fat.”


peter lumley, PA business intelligence expert 

Stephen Pritchard

Computer Weekly

11 February 2013

PA’s Peter Lumley, a business intelligence expert, is quoted in an article in Computer Weekly. The article looks at lean businesses and the growing role of IT.

Peter explains that although lean business is about being efficient, it can mean spending more money on some areas of the business in order to reduce waste and improve efficiency in others.

Peter goes on to say: “The nature of enterprise resource planning (ERP) is that its processes have to be broad enough to fit the needs of many businesses. That is the opposite of a very lean process. You have to be smart to configure an ERP system to cut away the fat.”

Peter explains that financial firms and others in the service sector are effectively “paper factories” set up to process large volumes of documents and information. He says that these can be automated in ways similar to the lean process improvements which are applied to manufacturing plants.

The article goes on to talk about how lean consultants suggest that clients carry out a “lean walk” throughout the business. Peter explains: “These lean walks are being used at services companies to see where processes can be improved and to see how information systems and back-office technology can help to create efficiency.” 

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