PathMaker: A Powerful Hoshin Planning Software Solution

Hoshin Kanri, also known as Hoshin Planning or Policy Deployment, is another great management idea from Japan. Like so many other modern management ideas, its roots lie in the quality management literature and practice which brought Japan into the front ranks of world manufacturing productivity. The ideas in Hoshin aren't complex. Basically, organizations will set strategy at the top, but the strategy will reflect ideas that are encouraged to bubble up from lower levels of the organization. The overall strategy gets exploded into finer detail as it goes down the organization. Indicators are established to reflect the achievement of strategic goals, and they are monitored over time - much the same as in the Balanced Scorecard method. The strategic plan is reviewed every year, and new annual goals are set, and progress towards long-term goals is assessed. A catchball process, of give and take between levels of the organization, is used to get alignment throughout the structure. The results, when everyone in the organization is pulling towards common - and correct - goals, can be very impressive.

PathMaker helps you set up an effective Hoshin Planning system without a huge investment. The first stage is to use PathMaker to develop the strategic plan for the organization, and identify the key indicators that will be tracked. The second stage is to share the plan with the next level down, and have each team at the lower level create its own sub-project. When project files are stored on network drives, team members can be assigned appropriate permission levels, and the process of catchball can begin. As time goes by, indicators can be monitored in Data Analyst steps on project pathways, and quality improvement projects can be executed, all within PathMaker. The level of shared knowledge in the organization increases, and with it comes alignment, and ultimately, speed.

For details on how to implement a Hoshin Planning system using PathMaker, please contact us.