How do you sell a great gift basket? Quality control is paramount when your industry is so competitive. Efficiency enhancements are essential when your profit margins from your products are tight. Continual learning and identifying what works for our gift basket creation and delivery business has contributed significantly to our continued success. During this learning process, I discovered Maturity Models and they have really added to the structure and optimization of several of our departments.
Maturity Models (MM) are a way of describing or measuring the process quality and efficiencies of an organization. Higher maturity levels typically assure a higher level of quality and efficiency can be expected from an organization. There are maturity models for most industries. CERT Resilience Management Model for cyber security, People Capability Maturity Model for human resources, and SEO Maturity Model for Search Engine Optimization as examples. Typically, there are five levels generally identified in Maturity Models. They are Initial, Managed, Defined, Measurement, and lastly Optimization.
Initial – Level 1
Initial is where many organizations start off. Quality control is not standardized or even tested in many cases. Processes are based on reacting to issues as they are discovered. Resources involved are inconsistent and unpredictable.
Managed – Level 2
Once an organization begins to identify sustaining a MM Level 1 operation is not reasonable they start some type of optimization efforts. Still very reactive and unpredictable but processes start to become identified. At this level, criteria are typically not standardized according to the goals of the organization.
Defined – Level 3
MM Level 3 is when most processes have been identified and have organizational standards applied. There is predictability in resources required. Defined quality standards are now checked proactively and not just at the end.
Measurement – Level 4
MM Level 4 operations are quality controlled and process-driven. Steps along the way of the process are defined, standardized, and able to be measured. Quality and efficiency are now part of the process and the product reflects this.
Optimization – Level 5
MM Level 5 is achieved when operations are smooth. The processes run themselves and quality is high. Now, much focus is given to making improvements to the processes and this evolution is data driven. This means, only the highest quality items are put into our gift baskets.
MM in Marketing
I can say that our gift basket fulfillment processes are of the highest quality and as an organization we have the highest standards for not only our products but for our employees as well. Our marketing efforts are a reflection of the high quality and standards we put into our gift baskets. What level of Maturity Model has your organization achieved?