But what does Hoshin Kanri imply According to the company, it literally means a compass needle. Just as a compass needle points precisely in the direction of the magnetic field, the Hoshin Kanri process breaks down an organisations long-term strategy into yearly cumulative targets. We also utilise this to establish each target and define the means to achieve these targets, says MYNL director (HR) Rajit Mehta.
Says Mr Mehta: We utilise this tool to measure the extent to which the professionals have utilised their capability to achieve business targets. And accordingly we determine the consolidated bonus to be awarded to them.
In line with this objective the tool is now being used to align all functional goals to the business goal of the company. The process is being implemented in consultation with Eicher Consultancy Services (ECS). Accordingly every employee has goals vis--vis the organisations stakeholders. The managing director sets his goals in alignment with the governance model (a part of the technique) and then shares this with professionals in the organisation. These professionals in turn set their goals in accordance with the goals set by the departmental head. Such a mode of deployment ensures that there is an alignment of goals across all levels of the organisation, he says.
Also, the company has charted-out certain parameters in the selection of goals. The parameters incorporate setting up goals critical to the business success, developing smart goals and peer-to-peer dialogue among others.
Based on the functional profile of individuals, the goals are further categorised into primary, shared and contributory goals. And every employee has to prioritise his own goals. All these prioritised goals are then taken up for evaluation and they are given a certain score. The weightage given to each goal is multiplied with the rating that the employee has received in achieving these goals. And accordingly employees are entitled to bonuses and rewards, says Mr Mehta.
The company claims that it has been able to evolve a clear business programme by implementing this technique. From the perspective of people management, the company affirms that it has enabled the organisation to align all functions to strategic goals and clearly define the accountability of professionals along with providing visibility to all employees across the strategic chain.
Commenting on the initiative, says Talent Trainers India Ltd associate consultant Ranjan Mitra: In the quest to accomplish goals corporates often lose sight of the key questionhow to define realistic goals that can drive business forward. The major challenge in implementing techniques like Hoshin Kanri according to the consultant is that it may not always be able to ensure participation across organisational hierarchy.
However, according to the consultant, many such Japanese toolkits have enabled organisations to set measurable goals and also successfully attain them.