Using the Balanced Scorecard at the United States Postal Service

November 27, 2017 Management

In response to the key issues for discussion question one; let’s first start out by defining what the USPS strategic goal areas of interest are. The “Voice of the Employee (VOE)” was one of the first strategic areas of focus deemed most important due to the past workplace violence at the post office. The VOE placed the emphasis on providing safety and security in the workplace and improving employee relations. Our stated in our text, “Researchers have repeatedly demonstrated that when service worker satisfaction is high, customer satisfaction is high, and that when job satisfaction is low, customer satisfaction is low. (Evans & Lindsay, 2011) Utilizing the balanced scorecard approach, the USPS gauged the VOE by measuring safety based on the requirements of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Employee satisfaction was measured by employee surveys which were conducted annually but could be traced on a monthly basis by each unit. The USPS realized that it must improve employee satisfaction in order to improve its internal processes. This was accomplished by providing training and growing their employees professionally.

The second element of the balanced score card was the “Voice of the Business (VOB)” which focused on the “Breakthrough Productivity Initiative”. The VOB was separated into two areas which were represented by a measurement in productivity and another in revenue generation. These areas were good indicators of whether internal processes were improving which would have been a direct result of improved employee satisfaction. Lastly, the “Voice of the Customer (VOC)” was considered. The VOC focused on providing timely and reliable delivery.

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In order to track this strategy a set of delivery service measurements systems were created. The VOC is a term used to describe the in-depth process of capturing a customer’s expectations, preferences and aversions. The USPS strategy was alignment of the three strategies which would lead to the voices of the customer and the employee dictating what the voice of the business would be. By achieving customer satisfaction, they could expect the desired financial outcome which in the case of the USPS is to provide sufficient revenue to support their mission of universal delivery service.

In response to question two of the key issues for discussion, the USPS could increase its customer satisfaction by reviewing its customer satisfaction at individual Post Offices. I often dread going to the post office as my experience has been one of long lines and poor customer service. As with any other measurement, one should ask the following questions: What is the nature of the business? What do the customers need and want? How do you we get employees committed to the vision? How do you get the organization committed to the employees?

These questions are addressed at the organizational level but I do not believe they are addressed at the local office level. It would be beneficial to obtain the answers to these questions and then create a local customer satisfaction survey. Based on these results, you can possibly come up with new processes that would reduce the queue time and improve customer service. You could set up a system that would gauge customer service by whether or not the customer is greeted within a set amount of time when entering the facility.

You could also encourage eye contact and a positive attitude by making employees greet customers with a smile. Positive eye contact could be encouraged by making the employees annotate the customer’s eye color. It may also be beneficial to have the delivery man/ women to actually hand deliver say one out of every twenty pieces of mail so as to personalize the service that they are rendering. This personalization will go a long way in improving customer satisfaction. Lastly we will discuss the advantages and disadvantages of the balanced scorecard (BSC) approach.

The balanced scorecard approach was developed in order to aide organizations in measuring performance and strategies that are not normally measured in the traditional way that financial assets are measured. A great advantage of the BSC is the ability to measure not only the financial but also the non-financial measures. According to the BMA Group Pty Ltd. , the strategic management system aides in accomplishing critical management processes like (The BMA Group, 2004): •Clarify and gain consensus about vision and strategy Communicate strategic objective, performance measures and drivers at all levels •Link strategic objective to targets and annual budgets •Identify and launch strategic initiatives •Enhance periodic systematic strategic reviews •Obtain feedback to learn about and improve strategy Another advantage is that it ensures that by taking in the four different aspects, that the senior managements are taking a more balanced view about the performance of the organization. It also ensures that the short, medium and long-term views are managed in a perpetual and cohesive manner.

It also aligns the top level strategies with those of middle management ensuring that they are clearly connected and appropriately focused. The BSC if properly created will ensure that the organization’s performance reporting system is focused on the things that will give it the competitive advantage both in the short and long term and by realizing value for its stakeholders. Some disadvantages include the fact that the BSC is not a quick fix and requires a considerable amount of time and effort as well as financial investment to develop it.

Each BSC must be custom fit for an organization and cannot be compared “apples to apples” against another organization BSC. In order for the BSC approach to work, you will need support from everyone in the organization in order for it to work making strategy everyone’s job. Bibliography Evans, J. R. , & Lindsay, W. M. (2011). Managing for Quality and Performance Excellence. Mason, Ohio: South-Western Cengage Learning. The BMA Group. (2004). Balanced scorecard background and key performance measures. Retrieved October 10, 2004, from The BMA Group Pty Ltd Online: http://www. bma. com. au/4/bsc_background. asp

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