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Click on one of the four capability areas to access a wide range of information, tools and applications to help you and your business. If you are unsure what you are looking for, browse the content by clicking on a segment and reviewing the business areas covered.
For an in-depth structured assessment, complete the Capability Diagnostic.
futureSME offer a host of online resources tools to help SMEs. Use the wheel to navigate through our online resource pack. Select a category, then select the sub category you feel that you would like more information on and browse our online tools for your perusal.
The ability to shape and embed a customer focused guiding vision, supported by a
clear operating model and a profit formula, balancing opportunistic short-term actions with proactive long-term
Competitive basis that's not reliant on low cost, high volume strategies. Moving
from resource intensive SMEs to knowledge intensive SMEs through leading services and product design. Includes servitisation and Product-Service Systems
Process of formulation, implementation and review of business strategy. Includes
development of guiding vision, understanding value proposition and core competencies, and defining business goals
& objectives to achieve the vision. Review incorporates internal and external information impacting on the
The way in which a business delivers its vision ⁄ value proposition to
stakeholders. Includes make ⁄ buy decisions, outsourcing, profit formula, organisational structure, supply
chain, manufacturing strategy, collaboration.
All about how the business manages its finances. May also include information
about profit formula. Concepts like cash flow, profit and loss, sources of finance, preparing a business plan are
Operating a business with consideration to social and environmental aspects, not
just financial. Includes compliance with environmental legislation through eco-design, measuring the environmental
as well as cost performance of products/processes, implementing an environmental policy, shift to 'green' business
The ability to mobilise the Managerial, Operational and Strategic capabilities by
rapidly changing the organisation to adapt to and shape the emerging environment.
Use of past experience to inform future work to prevent making same mistakes or
covering old ground again. Includes sharing knowledge and experience among employees, reviewing projects and
initiatives for learning points, learning from bad practice as well as best practice, capturing new working
procedures or new ideas at all levels.
The ability of the business to anticipate opportunities and threats and
implement changes rapidly, or to reconfigure resources quickly when required. Also includes resilient organisations
concept - the ability of the business to absorb negative impacts without going out of business.
Creation of a culture of change in the business to manage change effectively.
The process of planning, execution and review of changes.
New and creative ideas for product or processes ⁄ ways of doing things in
the business that bring benefit. Process of idea generation, evaluation and implementation.
Process of identifying relevant areas of the business environment and gathering
information from these in a deliberate and timely manner, then evaluating its significance and feeding this into the
strategy ⁄ decision making process
The ability to create a culture that is conducive to both employee development and
business growth i.e. Individual and Collective Transformation. This is the core element of the futureSME
The way in which business leaders set example, demonstrate integrity and
influence employees to deliver business goals and objectives. Includes leadership qualities, personal transformation
and building trust.
The way in which managers create and manage a strong workplace. Includes
motivation, managing performance, recognising and rewarding excellence, creating heroes in every role, building
trust, and nurturing innovation, cooperation and commitment.
The way in which the long-term leadership for the business is planned. Links
strongly to People Development, Collaborative Decision Making and Governance.
The way in which decisions are made in the business which are aligned with the
vision and strategy. Includes teamwork, thinking together, collaborative decision making and framework for
The way in which the business is structured and governed. It includes dynamic
structure, leadership qualities, collaborative decision making, framework for growth, and a strong workplace.
The ability to align critical processes, resources and technologies to the overall
guiding vision, and deliver these processes effectively and efficiently. To stay competitive, organisations must be
persistent in increasing efficiency through continuous improvement of their processes. The most successful companies
are those that improve their processes faster.
Design and management of effective and efficient processes to deliver company
vision ⁄ value proposition. The core element of process management is the continuous improvement of processes
in order to both increase performance and adapt quickly to business changes. Includes leading management concepts
such as Lean Management and Six Sigma.
The use of automated systems, processes, and tools during design, development
and aftersales services to deliver a product or service to market.
Working in partnership with external parties and networks towards a common
objective. May include information about assessing if collaboration is the best choice for a company, potential
benefits, choosing partners etc.
Design, implementation and management of a performance system. Identification of
appropriate number of KPIs and how to measure them and improve performance. Includes performance of all aspects of
the business, not just operational and financial. It is a foundation for efficient process management and
particularly for continuous improvement.
Ensuring customers know about your business and what it offers through using
different media sources and channels to increase visibility in the market. Includes information on existing market
growth, entering new markets.
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