Operational excellence means different things to different organisations. For some, it’s about lower operating costs and reduced inventories while for others; it involves increased efficiency and better quality.

Broadly speaking, to the vast majority of organisations, operational excellence involves achieving excellence in everything they deliver, including their print and digital communications. Read on for details of why operational excellence matters to your organisation.

What does operational excellence involve?

When it comes to your print and digital communications, operational excellence starts with determining the most appropriate Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) for your operation. These KPIs are typically aligned to quality, time and cost and are measured against desired outcomes and industry best practices.


Productivity is at the core of optimised operations and production excellence. Using enhanced analytics, it’s possible to take a specific indicator, such as total cost per piece, cycle time and defects, and measure and compare the performance of sites within an organisation and an organisation within an industry.

Carrying out a thorough operational assessment will also help you identify and eliminate bottlenecks and implement improvements across your workflows, optimise job set-up times, capacity management and job scheduling. An assessment can also help you identify costs in materials, resource and equipment, and connect them with processes in your production environment.

Why should you care?

On-going changes in customer behaviour, technology and innovation and pressures to reduce costs and meet the latest regulations mean the market is more challenging than ever before.

Operational excellence across your print and digital communications can help you overcome these challenges. So, rather than just sending out messages, you’re targeting your customers with relevant communications tailored to each stage of their customer journey, providing them with greater value.

Automating and integrating your workflows end to end across high-speed printing, inserting and postal sortation, can help generate maximum efficiency and boost your return on investment.

Organisations that practice operational excellence also tend to be ahead of the curve when it comes to using the latest mail technology. For instance, having the right finishing solution for all of your different types of mail will help ensure everything is processed accurately and that you maintain profitability and achieve cost efficiencies.

Applying an operational excellence mindset to your print and digital communications enables you to identify risk and maintain compliance. Operational excellence requires an intimate knowledge of your existing processes, what the limitations are, where the opportunities lie and where improvements can be made. This involves ensuring that your print and digital mail operations aren’t just as efficient and effective as possible, but that they adhere to the latest industry standards and regulations. Failure to comply comes at a price, from both a financial and reputational level.

Whilst operational excellence may vary from organisation-to-organisation, the benefits are widespread for those who take the time to embrace it and can make all the difference between performing well and being at the very top of your game.