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The road to zero basing success

The road to zero basing success

How does an elite racing team consistently ramp up its performance to stay ahead? By relentlessly focusing on a single goal, underpinned by clearly defined targets along the way. By prioritizing the areas of highest potential improvement, and by creating a powerful sense of shared team ownership and responsibility, from the engineers to the pit crews to the drivers behind the wheel.

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The Issue

How does an elite racing team consistently ramp up its performance to stay ahead? By relentlessly focusing on a single goal, underpinned by clearly defined targets along the way. By prioritizing the areas of highest potential improvement, and by creating a powerful sense of shared team ownership and responsibility, from the engineers to the pit crews to the drivers behind the wheel. It’s exactly the same story when delivering a successful zero basing program. The entire organization needs to be focused on a well-articulated vision of success. The spotlight must always be on those activities where the greatest strategic value lies. And individual teams should be challenged to the max to ensure that the vision outlined by the business becomes reality.

This article considers six critical factors to consider when introducing a zero basing program to an organization: The road to zero basing success

1.     Be crystal clear about your goals

Zero basing programs are usually driven by cost challenges or the need to better align resources against a new or existing strategy. In either case, it’s vital that the overall goal is clear, with ambitious targets to deliver it. This acts as a spur, empowering the organization to think differently and consider radical options that could genuinely mean step changes and improved performance. Zero basing can be a complex and highly challenging process: it can also mean a major investment in time and resources. Spending time building a persuasive case for change – and ensuring that senior leadership are fully on board will pay dividends in the long term.

2.     Think big, start small

For some businesses, there’s a temptation to dive in full throttle with their zero-basing program. But far more effective is to start in a controlled manner and work up to a larger program to achieve fully sustainable results. A successful pilot scheme in one particular area creates momentum and addresses any initial concerns across the organization. It helps reduce delivery risk and acts as a form of role model, educating the business on the wider benefits of zero basing, creating a real pull from the rest of the organization.

3.     Focus on the areas of greatest potential value Where you start depends on the individual circumstances and objectives of the organization. But all businesses should consider the following elements, when determining the scope and shape of the initial wave of zero basing.

© 2020 KPMG, a Ghanaian registered partnership and a member firm of the KPMG network of independent member firms affiliated with KPMG International Cooperative, a Swiss entity. All rights reserved.

KPMG International Cooperative (“KPMG International”), a Swiss entity. Member firms of the KPMG network of independent firms are affiliated with KPMG International. KPMG International provides no client services. No member firm has any authority to obligate or bind KPMG International or any other member firm third parties, nor does KPMG International have any such authority to obligate or bind any member firm. All rights reserved.

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