A company, regardless of the industry in which it operates, constantly needs to analyze the market and improve its operations in order to grow and become more successful. However, when big money is at stake, there is no room for trial-and-error improvement. Therefore, benchmarking is a business management practice that focuses on implementing the best possible solutions based on the working methods of companies considered to be the best in a given field.


Benchmarking - analysis of the best solutions available on the market

In the era of rapid economic development and the emergence of many new companies, competition in the market is also increasing at a dizzying pace. Nowadays, start-up capital and a good product are no longer enough to succeed in the market. Of course, it is possible to build a startup, but if it is not a combination of a great idea and an even better way to implement it, this company will disappear from the market, failing. So, if a company is very aware of the modern market, it should focus on greater professionalization within its field and the best possible management of human resources. The most important thing here is to analyze the market itself and the actions of the competition and choose the best possible business solutions.

Benchmarking was born in the 1970s, when the U.S.-based Rand Xerox Co lost its market leadership to Japanese copier company Canon. At that time, the company decided to take a closer look at its competitor and analyze what actions gave it that advantage. It also took a close look at its own company - its organization, the quality of its products, its cooperation with contractors. By implementing its competitor's working methods, it was able to regain its position and compete with Canon.


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Benchmarking - learn from mistakes, but not your own

Benchmarking in Polish means pattern, reference point or comparative measure, and all these terms perfectly capture the idea of this practice: comparing the management methods and practices of own company to the biggest players on the market who are successful in their industry. The term also refers to a repertory, a waypoint set in a prominent place such as from a tower used by surveyors in leveling measurements. Such analysis is intended to improve a given company, but it does not involve blind imitation, on the contrary, it is a process of analyzing the factors that make some activities bring the expected profits while others bring losses, inhibit the development and operation of the company.


Benchmarking - the most important stages:

  • identification - determining the factors that make other companies leaders in the industry;
  • knowledge - the process of learning and understanding the performance of the best companies, which leads to the evaluation of their functioning, activities and work methods, as well as services or products provided;
  • adaptation - the application in practice of the knowledge gained;
  • systematization - any conclusions drawn from analyses should be systematized to give a clear and consistent whole;
  • continuity - although there is no clear answer as to whether benchmarking is a method, a tool or a technique, it is certainly a continuous process, the overriding goal of which is to improve the way an organization operates and to aim for the ideal.

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