The Various Types of Benchmarking

Benchmarking is one of our specialities. In business you have to react quickly and work efficiently in order to survive and compete with others. We can provide you with several tools and benchmarking methods to enable you to monitor progress and achieve your objectives.

What is Benchmarking?
Originally, the intention was a comparison to one´s own performance, turnover and other achievements in the past in order to improve the structure of a company. Although this often led to improvements in the company it is never a comparison against competitors or the economy. Competitors might still be ahead of you and you do not know why. In this case benchmarking is the ideal tool to find it out.

To carry out an effective benchmarking you ought to be prepared to put your cards on the table and to implement the findings that have been established during the benchmarking. Do not be afraid of changes and to break up outdated or ineffective structures even when you “have always done it this way…”

Benchmarking is a valuable tool when a company is under pressure or also in case of innovation, e.g. a new product range etc. Another reason for benchmarking might be the level of competitive activity or simply the idea of competing with the best (in the industry or a particular market).

Benchmarking can be practiced in various formats: 

  • Internal Benchmarking:

    • The internal evaluation of the company standards to establish which knowledge is already there and which might be missing.
    • This is also a way to find out which hidden treasures might exist in the heads of your employees.
  • External Benchmarking:

    • Sometimes called 'Competition-related Benchmarking': establishing one´s own standard against a competitor. Comparing products, services and procedures to an immediate competitor.

  • Benchmarking within the industry:

    • Evaluating the standards of one company compared to its entire industry.

  • Benchmarking across industries:

    • Comparison of efficiency and performance standards of one company against world-class companies, regardless of the industry or national markets. In this context we also talk about „Best Practice“, which means making the best use of the collected data regarding the best possible procedure.

The typical focus of Benchmarking could be e.g:

    • What is the position of the organisation compared to the competition?
    • What is the level of customers changing to the competition or vice versa?
    • What are the actual strengths and weaknesses of the company? (e.g. products, advice, service, innovation, image etc.) 
    • In which areas are competitors better and why is this?
    • What differences are there within the organisation (Comparison of several locations or departments and divisions)
    • How does the organisation develop in comparison to others?
    • Are changes in the market recognised at an early stage?
    • What is the best way to market a new product/service?

  • Advantages of Benchmarking:

    • Pinpointing the current position on the market „looking beyond one´s own nose“.
    • Getting detailed information about the level of performance, the quality and acceptance of products and services compared to the competition.
    • As a reliable tool in the field of continuous quality management.
    • To gain a competitive advantage over other companies.
    • Improvement of overall competitiveness
  • Positive results of Benchmarking:

    • Cost cutting in all divisions of the company
    • Speeding-up business and decision making processes
    • Higher productivity and efficiency
    • Increasing customer satisfaction
    • Increasing employees´ motivation and satisfaction