What We Do

Practices and Methodologies 2019-07-11T20:11:34+00:00

Practices and Methodologies

We have several standard methodologies that we have developed over the years. However, our experience shows that each business has different opportunities, processes and organizational culture. This diversity demands each of our proposals to be unique and customized for each client and, therefore, we do not believe in “one-size-fits-all” solution. As such, before developing a proposal, we always understand your issue, your context and your organization.

Here you can find more detail about our main practices and methodologies.

Zero-Based Budgeting (ZBB)

basezero

ZBB consists in the implementation of an efficient process for expenses budget management of an organization. Therefore, the main objective of our methodology is to start a perennial cultural change that leads to a virtuous cycle in cost reduction over the years. Given its efficacy, benefits can be reaped during the first year of implementation.

Although it was initially developed to manage fixed expenses, the methodology can be applied as well to costs, variable expenses and revenue. ZBB inception is associated to fixed expenses since they are the P&L lines where managers have more control and discretionality. Unlike these accounts, the other lines (revenue, cost and variable expenses) depend on other factors like market behavior or economic environment. Therefore, efficiency in fixed expense management guarantees a profitability lever that depends only on the organization’s managers.

The methodology principle is to understand, define and control the resource utilization to achieve the strategic goals of the organization.

Our methodology comprises for modules:

  • Understanding current situation, where we map current resource utilization and current budget process, as well as understanding organization’s short and long-term Strategic Planning
  • Resource utilization rules definition and/or revision , where we define the guidelines for an efficient expense along with the organization’s managers
  • Budget development, when organization’s managers build their budgets based on the rules defined in the previous module
  • Budget control and follow-up, where we define and implement a process to assess adherence of actual expense to budget

Since this methodology is very flexible, the process can be adapted to the client’s current budget support tools, to other market solutions or even to simpler tools as Excel or BI interfaces.

One of the main levers we analyze during the process are sourcing related initiatives. To support these initiatives, we have well-known external partners in several industries that support us on the capture of identified opportunities.

Organizational Design:

dezenho-org

In this kind of projects, we help our clients to define the optimal organizational structure to achieve their strategic goals. Therefore, the main objective is not to reduce the cost of the firm but to build a more agile, flexible and efficient organization to serve its customers.

After understanding organization’s short, medium and long-term challenges, we can work on four work fronts to solve different issues:

  • Roles and responsibilities definition, where we revise the allocation of activities by process throughout the different areas in the organization (who is responsible for each activity and how the processes flow across the organization)
  • Structural Sizing (first two hierarchical levels of the firm), where we discuss along with the main stakeholders which is the most appropriate leadership structure to achieve organization’s goals)
  • Management Sizing (managers and coordinators), where we review the team leadership identifying potential synergies between areas and/or opportunities in terms of span of control
  • Team sizing, where we revise the number of positions needed to accomplish each area’s tasks. We count with several methodologies and tools to analyze activities of different nature: administrative, support, commercial, operational (e.g. warehousing) and project areas

The last phase in our methodology is focused on the implementation plan development, where all the needed activities to capture the identified opportunities are detailed, as well as the definition of the employees that will hold each position in the new structure. Pragmatis can support the implementation of the new structure as well.

Since they are sensitive projects, one of the main issues in this kind of project is change management. In order to support this task, Pragmatis has developed a new methodology that helps to “soften” the impact across the organization and keep a healthy work environment.

Besides organizational redesign, Pragmatis also support its clients in the revision of their headcount management process, from budget definition to follow-up activities.

Merger and acquisitions (post-merger integration):

fusoes

After a firm is acquired or two (or more) organizations merge, we support our clients in the operational integration of their businesses.

After social capital integration is done, we worked along with the organizations in four work fronts to support operational integration:

  • Structure Design of the new organization, where we used a similar practice than the Organizational Design one, and we discuss along with the main stakeholders which is the most appropriate management structure to achieve the new organization’s goals
  • Operational processes revision, where we map the activities, KPIs and systems of each organization and we build the optimum process for the new organization. In this module, we help as well with the development of specific sub-products, as the chart of accounts of the organization, the registration of suppliers, wage structure, etc.
  • Identification of synergies among operations, where we map potential opportunities possible due to the merge of the organizations
  • Management and team sizing of the new organization, where we apply the same methodology than its counterpart in the Organizational Design practice and we review the number of needed positions to achieve each area’s tasks, as well as the middle management levels of the organization

In the case of organizations that are continuously acquiring other businesses and integrating them to their operation, we also developed a methodology to define a detailed integration process containing a step-by-step chronogram that comprises all the needed activities to incorporate the new business to the current structure.

Management Processes Optimization (MPO):

opg

We support our clients to make their management processes more efficient in terms of cost, time and quality.

After defining the processes that will be reviewed, we begin our projects with a detailed mapping of the processes, understanding each of the activities, responsible, performance indicators, and support systems.

The process revision is guided by the PCS tool (Problem-Cause-Solution), where we identify each of the problems the process is facing (in terms of cost, time and quality) and the root-cause for each problem. Based on this information, we propose a simple, pragmatic and easy-to-implement solution that presents a measurable improvement. The solution can be an activity revision (addition, elimination, substitution, reallocation of responsibility, etc.) or a modification in the support systems.

To ensure the capture of identified opportunities, we review the key performance indicators (KPIs) to measure the efficiency of each process —defining the expected targets after the process revision— and we develop an action plan with deadlines and responsible to support the implementation.

Commercial Processes / Excellence Program (PEX):

processos-comerciais

We support organizations to improve their execution at the point of contact with their customers. Over the years, we acquired a huge experience in Sales Force and retail management.

1. Sales Force Management:

Our projects aim to define the routine, processes and support tools to level-up the sales performance. In order to achieve this, we support our clients in the revision of all the activities of the sales process:

  • Sales Force schedule and route definition (customer prioritization)
  • Visit preparation (data gathering and analysis)
  • Definition of step-by-step during the visit (activities, responsible and control)
  • Control and overview with performance indicators
  • Meeting agenda definition
  • Sales Force incentive programs revision
  • Visit routes optimization
  • Sales Force segmentation and sizing

2. Store Excellence Program (PEX)

Throughout several projects, we have developed a solid tool for store management, that comprises several dimensions to maximize the customer experience:

  • Meeting agenda definition, beginning with headquarters meetings and ending in operational meetings at the store, guaranteeing the cascade of decisions to the next level and defining the reports and indicators to be used in each meeting
  • Revision of activities at the store level, as well as their proceedings
  • Definition of tools and indicators to follow-up store performance

Pragmatis supports the content definition as well as their implementation, being an active part of the store team training.

Pricing:

princing

Not only price strategy optimization is one of the levers with higher impact in the business bottom line, but it is usually one of the most disregarded as well. Our Pricing projects support organizations to maximize their captured value through several methodologies.

We improve our client’s pricing in three dimensions:

  • Strategic pricing management, where we revise the price positioning against competitors, the value proposal of the product portfolio, pricing models, etc.
  • Transactional pricing management, where we revise several tools to maximize the capture of our pricing strategy on a daily basis (pricing list definition, discount management, segment and channel discrimination, minimum order, etc.)
  • Organizational pricing management, where we review the Pricing organizational structure as well as its processes, and we help with the development of the team and the implementation of support tools

Route to Market / Go to Market:

rtm

Our Route to Market methodology optimizes the distribution of our client’s products. We support our clients with several tools for the main decisions regarding Route to Market:

  • Mapping of value chain margin pool, identifying the main stakeholders and the levers in each stage
  • Customer segmentation, where we identify the main needs of each customer, the key attributes for their loyalty and the profitability they bring to the organization
  • Serve model for each of the segments, where we define which sales force will serve each customer, their service model (Sales and Logistics), the target service level and the appropriate tools for value maximization and capture in each of the segments
  • Customer and product portfolio management, where we implement processes to monitor profitability and avoid conflicts of interest among channels or segments

In this methodology, Pragmatis counts as well with a differentiated expertise in Wholesaler Compensation. In this kind of projects, we help our clients to build a sustainable wholesaler network and define a healthy compensation aligned with the organization goals.

Logistics and Stock Management:

logistica

Our Logistics Management projects seek for logistics costs efficiency through several tools:

  • Freight cost revision, where we analyze transportation expenses and we look for several initiatives (modal mix, loading rate optimization, vehicle model mix, cross-docking utilization, outsourcing vs. internalization, etc.)
  • Warehouse processes revision, where we map and identify improvement in internal processes (receiving, handling, expedition, import, export, etc.)
  • Sizing of Warehouse operational teams, through a collection of time and movements and the identification of productivity increases
  • Sizing of Logistics Support teams, where we map back-office activities and processes looking for efficiency initiatives
  • Stock management, where we revise the policy by product in order to optimize working capital cost and service level

Logistic Blueprint:

blueprint

Given the growing need for a cost reduction in the Supply Chain as a whole, we offer tools for logistics network optimization. Through several IT tools, we define the optimum location of the factories and/or distribution centers based on different alternatives of merchandise transportation.

The first steps in our projects comprise the estimate of production and logistics costs in each of stage of the process, for each one of the available means of transportation. Once we define the transportation cost curves, we map the different demand points and we define the optimum location of the factories and/or warehouses based on the defined objective function (optimize profit, minimize cost, maximize volume, maximize distribution, etc.).

Our team was trained in different software for logistic network optimization (such as CAST and Llamasoft), and we also developed in-house simplified tools using Excel and VBA.

Continuous Improvement:

melhoria

In the continuous improvement projects, we support our clients in systematically minimizing or eliminating activities that do not add value (waste) from their operational and support processes.

Instead of focusing on isolated revisions of activities, assets or even teams, we analyze the product and services flow from a “horizontal” point of view across the whole organization, maximizing added value to the final customer and looking for eliminating all the waste.

In order to review each stage, we apply a process with the main five principles of lean methodologylean:

  • Identify the product value from the consumer point of view
  • Map the different stages in the analyzed process, identifying the ones that add value to the final product and those that can be eliminated
  • Join the stages that add value to the product, creating a continuous value flow and minimizing the time to the consumer
  • Establish a “Pull” production system, only offering products demanded by the consumer
  • Pursue perfection beginning a new process

Continuous Improvement projects need a cultural change in the organization and they are more effective when the change is embedded in the business.

Business Plan / Valuation:

business-plan

We help our client in the development of business plans for high-impact projects in the organization (new product, entry to new markets, new business, etc.), as well as in the firm valuation (or part of it).

Our recommendations include several perspectives of the financial analysis:

  • Demand and competitive situation mapping
  • Operational and financial costs understanding and modelling
  • Recommendation about invested capital and financial structure
  • Review of different scenarios of business growth
  • Identification of opportunities for business value increase
  • Financial value estimate

Our team’s expertise in diverse industries and financial institutions contributes to build a solid structure to support our clients in this kind of projects.

Practices and Methodologies

We have several standard methodologies that we have developed over the years. However, our experience shows that each business has different opportunities, processes and organizational culture. This diversity demands each of our proposals to be unique and customized for each client and, therefore, we do not believe in “one-size-fits-all” solution. As such, before developing a proposal, we always understand your issue, your context and your organization.

Here you can find more detail about our main practices and methodologies.

basezero

ZBB consists in the implementation of an efficient process for expenses budget management of an organization. Therefore, the main objective of our methodology is to start a perennial cultural change that leads to a virtuous cycle in cost reduction over the years. Given its efficacy, benefits can be reaped during the first year of implementation.

Although it was initially developed to manage fixed expenses, the methodology can be applied as well as to costs, variable expenses, and revenue. ZBB inception is associated with fixed expenses since they are the P&L lines where managers have more control and discretionality. Unlike these accounts, the other lines (revenue, cost, and variable expenses) depend on other factors like market behavior or economic environment. Therefore, efficiency in fixed expense management guarantees a profitability lever that depends only on the organization’s managers.

The methodology principle is to understand, define and control the resource utilization to achieve the strategic goals of the organization.

Our methodology comprises for modules:

  • Understanding current situation, where we map current resource utilization and current budget process, as well as understanding organization’s short and long-term Strategic Planning
  • Resource utilzation rules definition and/or revision, where we define the guidelines for an efficient expense along with the organization’s managers
  • Budget development, when organization’s managers build their budgets based on the rules defined in the previous module
  • Budget control and follow-up, where we define and implement a process to assess adherence of actual expense to budget

Since this methodology is very flexible, the process can be adapted to the client’s current budget support tools, to other market solutions or even to simpler tools as Excel or BI interfaces.

One of the main levers we analyze during the process is sourcing related initiatives. To support these initiatives, we have well-known external partners in several industries that support us on the capture of identified opportunities.

dezenho-org

In this kind of projects, we help our clients to define the optimal organizational structure to achieve their strategic goals. Therefore, the main objective is not to reduce the cost of the firm but to build a more agile, flexible and efficient organization to serve its customers.

After understanding organization’s short, medium and long-term challenges, we can work on four work fronts to solve different issues:

  • Roles and responsibilities definition, where we revise the allocation of activities by process throughout the different areas in the organization (who is responsible for each activity and how the processes flow across the organization)
  • Structural Sizing (first two hierarchical levels of the firm), where we discuss along with the main stakeholders which is the most appropriate leadership structure to achieve organization’s goals)
  • Management Sizing(managers and coordinators), where we review the team leadership identifying potential synergies between areas and/or opportunities in terms of span of control
  • Team sizing, where we revise the number of positions needed to accomplish each area’s tasks. We count with several methodologies and tools to analyze activities of different nature: administrative, support, commercial, operational (e.g. warehousing) and project areas

The last phase in our methodology is focused on the implementation plan development, where all the needed activities to capture the identified opportunities are detailed, as well as the definition of the employees that will hold each position in the new structure. Pragmatis can support the implementation of the new structure as well.

Since they are sensitive projects, one of the main issues in this kind of project is change management. In order to support this task, Pragmatis has developed a new methodology that helps to “soften” the impact across the organization and keep a healthy work environment.

Besides organizational redesign, Pragmatis also support its clients in the revision of their headcount management process, from budget definition to follow-up activities.

fusoes

After a firm is acquired or two (or more) organizations merge, we support our clients in the operational integration of their businesses.

After social capital integration is done, we worked along with the organizations in four work fronts to support operational integration:

  • Structure Design of the new organization, where we used a similar practice than the Organizational Design one, and we discuss along with the main stakeholders which are the most appropriate management structure to achieve the new organization’s goals
  • Operational processes revision, where we map the activities, KPIs and systems of each organization and we build the optimum process for the new organization. In this module, we help as well with the development of specific sub-products, as the chart of accounts of the organization, the registration of suppliers, wage structure, etc.
  • Identification of synergies among operations, where we map potential opportunities possible due to the merge of the organizations
  • Management and team sizing of the new organization, where we apply the same methodology than its counterpart in the Organizational Design practice and we review the number of needed positions to achieve each area’s tasks, as well as the middle management levels of the organization

In the case of organizations that are continuously acquiring other businesses and integrating them to their operation, we also developed a methodology to define a detailed integration process containing a step-by-step chronogram that comprises all the needed activities to incorporate the new business to the current structure.

opg

We support our clients to make their management processes more efficient in terms of cost, time and quality.

After defining the processes that will be reviewed, we begin our projects with a detailed mapping of the processes, understanding each of the activities, responsible, performance indicators and support systems.

The process revision is guided by the PCS tool (Problem-Cause-Solution), where we identify each of the problems the process is facing (in terms of cost, time and quality) and the root cause for each problem. Based on this information, we propose a simple, pragmatic and easy-to-implement solution that presents a measurable improvement. The solution can be an activity revision (addition, elimination, substitution, reallocation of responsibility, etc.) or a modification in the support systems.

To ensure the capture of identified opportunities, we review the key performance indicators (KPIs) to measure the efficiency of each process —defining the expected targets after the process revision— and we develop an action plan with deadlines and responsible to support the implementation.

processos-comerciais

We support organizations to improve their execution at the point of contact with their customers. Over the years, we acquired a huge experience in Sales Force and retail management.

1. Sales Force Management:

Our projects aim to define the routine, processes and support tools to level-up the sales performance. In order to achieve this, we support our clients in the revision of all the activities of the sales process:

  • Sales Force schedule and route definition (customer prioritization)
  • Visit preparation (data gathering and analysis)
  • Definition of step-by-step during the visit (activities, responsible and control)
  • Control and overview with performance indicators
  • Meeting agenda definition
  • Sales Force incentive programs revision
  • Visit routes optimization
  • Sales Force segmentation and sizing

2. Store Excellence Program (PEX)

Throughout several projects, we have developed a solid tool for store management, that comprises several dimensions to maximize the customer experience:

  • Meeting agenda definition, beginning with headquarters meetings and ending in operational meetings at the store, guaranteeing the cascade of decisions to the next level and defining the reports and indicators to be used in each meeting
  • Revision of activities at the store level, as well as their proceedings
  • Definition of tools and indicators to follow-up store performance

Pragmatis supports the content definition as well as their implementation, being an active part of the store team training.

princing

Not only price strategy optimization is one of the levers with higher impact in the business bottom line, but it is usually one of the most disregarded as well. Our Pricing projects support organizations to maximize their captured value through several methodologies.

We improve our client’s pricing in three dimensions:

  • Strategic pricing management, where we revise the price positioning against competitors, the value proposal of the product portfolio, pricing models, etc.
  • Transactional pricing management, where we revise several tools to maximize the capture of our pricing strategy on a daily basis (pricing list definition, discount management, segment and channel discrimination, minimum order, etc.)
  • Organizational pricing management, where we review the Pricing organizational structure as well as its processes, and we help with the development of the team and the implementation of support tools

rtm

Our Route to Market methodology optimizes the distribution of our client’s products. We support our clients with several tools for the main decisions regarding Route to Market:

  • Mapping of value chain margin pool, identifying the main stakeholders and the levers in each stage
  • Customer segmentation, where we identify the main needs of each customer, the key attributes of their loyalty and the profitability they bring to the organization
  • Serve model for each of the segments, where we define which sales force will serve each customer, their service model (Sales and Logistics), the target service level and the appropriate tools for value maximization and capture in each of the segments
  • Customer and product portfolio management, where we implement processes to monitor profitability and avoid conflicts of interest among channels or segments

In this methodology, Pragmatis counts as well with a differentiated expertise in Wholesaler Compensation. In this kind of projects, we help our clients to build a sustainable wholesaler network and define a healthy compensation aligned with the organization goals.

logistica

Our Logistics Management projects seek for logistics costs efficiency through several tools:

  • Freight cost revision, where we analyze transportation expenses and we look for several initiatives (modal mix, loading rate optimization, vehicle model mix, cross-docking utilization, outsourcing vs. internalization, etc.)
  • Warehouse processes revision, where we map and identify improvement in internal processes (receiving, handling, expedition, import, export, etc.)
  • Sizing of Warehouse operational teams, through a collection of time and movements and the identification of productivity increases
  • Sizing of Logistics Support teams, where we map back-office activities and processes looking for efficiency initiatives
  • Stock management, where we revise the policy by product in order to optimize working capital cost and service level

blueprint

Given the growing need for a cost reduction in the Supply Chain as a whole, we offer tools for logistics network optimization. Through several IT tools, we define the optimum location of the factories and/or distribution centers based on different alternatives of merchandise transportation.

The first steps in our projects comprise the estimate of production and logistics costs in each of stage of the process, for each one of the available means of transportation. Once we define the transportation cost curves, we map the different demand points and we define the optimum location of the factories and/or warehouses based on the defined objective function (optimize profit, minimize cost, maximize volume, maximize distribution, etc.).

Our team was trained in different software for logistic network optimization (such as CAST and Llamasoft), and we also developed in-house simplified tools using Excel and VBA.

melhoria

In the continuous improvement projects, we support our clients in systematically minimizing or eliminating activities that do not add value (waste) from their operational and support processes.

Instead of focusing on isolated revisions of activities, assets or even teams, we analyze the product and services flow from a “horizontal” point of view across the whole organization, maximizing added value to the final customer and looking for eliminating all the waste.

In order to review each stage, we apply a process with the main five principles of lean methodology lean:

  • Identify the product value from the consumer point of view
  • Map the different stages in the analyzed process, identifying the ones that add value to the final product and those that can be eliminated
  • Join the stages that add value to the product, creating a continuous value flow and minimizing the time to the consumer
  • Establish a “Pull” production system, only offering products demanded by the consumer
  • Pursue perfection beginning a new process

Continuous Improvement projects need a cultural change in the organization and they are more effective when the change is embedded in the business.

business-plan

We help our client in the development of business plans for high-impact projects in the organization (new product, entry to new markets, new business, etc.), as well as in the firm valuation (or part of it).

Our recommendations include several perspectives of the financial analysis:

  • Demand and competitive situation mapping
  • Operational and financial costs understanding and modelling
  • Recommendation about invested capital and financial structure
  • Review of different scenarios of business growth
  • Identification of opportunities for business value increase
  • Financial value estimate

Our team’s expertise in diverse industries and financial institutions contributes to build a solid structure to support our clients in this kind of projects.

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