Have Ye Seen Tim Wood? Improving Your Flawed Security Process

Threatswitch Team
July 7, 2016

How is your organization’s process for determining employee security suitability?  Are your efforts fraught with delays and mistakes?

Waste in your security program can have serious consequences for its overall effectiveness.  Not only can file adjudication be delayed, or grind to a halt, a bad process can also let errors creep in—exactly what you don’t want as you try to keep your caseload on track and maintain the security of your organization.

In contrast, an appropriately designed and managed program benefits you through better security, higher quality, increased simplicity, and shorter time to completion.

Process improvement methodologies like Lean decompile a complex process into its constituent parts to unlock value and streamline organizational inefficiency.

Using the acronym TIM WOOD as our guide we’ll show you specific areas where your security program likely suffers from waste.

Transportation. Activities like shipping files between offices and travel times required to conduct investigations fall within this category.  Have you determined whether these are done in the most efficient way possible or if they can be done in completely new ways that still meet compliance requirements?

Inventory. Look at the average or current number of cases or operations that are in process.  Is the number appropriate to your organization, or is a backlog being created that overwhelms the system from the get-go?

Motion. An inefficient office layout or operational configuration makes employees expend unnecessary additional effort to coordinate steps in the security process.  Something as simple as placing employees together who must hand-off tasks can improve communication and streamline security adjudication.

Wait. Waiting for records checks, other agencies, and system downtime, are not just inefficient, they can be downright deadly. Momentum is lost. The backlog increases. Morale suffers. You get the idea.

Overproduction. This is the case when an organization is busy clearing, classifying and investigating more “things” (such as people, incidents, sites and leads) than are materially necessary to the program’s efficient operation or mandated by the home agency.

Overprocessing. Doing additional checks, investments or operations beyond the amount necessary is also wasteful. It has what economists call “low marginal utility.”  In other words, it ain’t worth the extra effort.

Defects. Yuck.  Errors, false positives (wrongly fingering loyal employees) and even false negatives (not catching the bad guys), bad forms, incomplete subject or investigation data—these are all examples of wasteful defects that need to be eliminated.  Remember, garbage in – garbage out.

Now that you understand more about Tim Wood, you are empowered take a clearer view of specific areas within your organization to target for improvement.

‘Egads,’ you might say. ‘My organization is filled with those who will resist all efforts at complete, unswerving and immediate overhaul.‘

We bring a message of hope to your quest, young squire.

Organizational efficiency experts (and our calculators) underscore that a simple one-tenth of one percent (.001) improvement daily in your operational process will double your productivity in just three years.

Imagine what your organization can achieve.

Or not.  If a security risk slips through the net because of a bad process, at least the organizers of the RSA Conference will be grateful for their new keynote speaker next year.

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