RMPEx Award Process Steps
- Schedule an Introductory Awareness Workshop: RMPEx has developed a workshop, conducted at your site, designed to introduce you and your staff to the Rocky Mountain Performance Excellence Criteria and Awards process.
- Decide to Apply: This is a serious commitment of time and resources and should have support at the senior level of your organization. Visit Learn the Value to review the benefits of this commitment,
- Determine Award Level: Following the Baldrige model, RMPEx has created a four-level progression of award criteria.
- Complete the “Intent to Apply” form: Each applicant for the Rocky Mountain Performance Excellence Award must complete the Intent to Apply form and return it along with a cover letter on company letterhead from the most senior official from the organization. Also include check, money order, or Visa, MC, or American Express card information for $125 to Rocky Mountain Performance Excellence, Inc. for Foothills, Timberline and Peak applications. High Plains applicants should submit $50 with their Intent to Apply form
- Schedule an Application Writing Workshop: RMPEx has developed a workshop, conducted at your site, designed to introduce you to the expectations for the content of your application and some suggestions for how to organize the project.
- Complete Application: Preparing your application is a very significant undertaking requiring planning, writing, and reviewing the application. Review the Requirements for Application Content and Format for a list of required content and format requirements, such as minimum font. Necessary application fees should be mailed to Rocky Mountain Performance Excellence. Email the complete application package in one Word or PDF file to RMPEx.
- Site Visit: A site visit is conducted as the final step in the evaluation process. Site visits are required of all award applicants at the Foothills, Timberline, and Peak level. The applicant must agree before submitting an application to pay site visit fees, lodging and on-site meal expenses for examiners on the site visit.
- Receive and Review Confidential Feedback Report: When the feedback report is received, your team should review the report for strengths and opportunities for improvement and fold these into action planning for the next year.
Guidelines for Responding to Criteria Questions
Award applicant feedback is based on two evaluation dimensions: (1) Process and (2) Results. Criteria users need to furnish information relating to these dimensions. Specific factors for these dimensions are described below.
“Process” refers to the methods your organization uses and improves to address the Criteria Item requirements. The four factors used to evaluate process are Approach, Deployment, Learning, and Integration (ADLI).
- the methods used to accomplish the process
- the appropriateness of the methods to the Item requirements
- the effectiveness of your use of the methods
- the degree to which the approach is repeatable and based on reliable data and information (i.e., systematic)
“Deployment”(not required for Foothills) refers to the extent to which
- your approach is applied in addressing Item requirements relevant and important to your organization
- your approach is applied consistently
- your approach is used by all appropriate work units
“Learning”(not required for Foothills) refers to
- refining your approach through cycles of evaluation and improvement
- encouraging breakthrough change to your approach through innovation
- sharing refinements and innovations with other relevant work units and processes in your organization
“Integration” (not required for Foothills) refers to the extent to which
- your approach is aligned with your organizational needs identified in the Organizational Profile and other Process Items
- your measures, information, and improvement systems are complementary across processes and work units
- your plans, processes, results, analyses, learning, and actions are harmonized across processes and work units to support organization-wide goals
“Results”(Required only for Peak Applications) refers to your organization’s outputs and outcomes in achieving the Results questions. The four factors used to evaluate results are
- your current level of performance
- the rate (i.e., the slope of trend data) and breadth (i.e., the extent of deployment) of your performance improvements
- your performance relative to appropriate comparisons and/or benchmarks
- the linkage of your results measures (often through segmentation) to important customer, product and service, market, process, and action plan performance requirements identified in your Organizational Profile and in Process Items
Guidelines for Responding to Process Items
Although the Criteria focus on key organizational performance results, these results by themselves offer little diagnostic value. For example, if some results are poor or are improving at rates slower than your competitors’ or comparable organizations’, it is important to understand why this is so and what might be done to accelerate improvement.
The purpose of Process Items is to permit diagnosis of your organization’s most important processes-the ones that yield fast-paced organizational performance improvement and contribute to key outcomes or performance results. Diagnosis and feedback depend heavily on the content and completeness of your Item responses. For this reason, it is important to respond to these Items by providing your key process information. Guidelines for organizing and reviewing such information follow.
1. Understand the meaning of “how.”
Process Items include questions that begin with the word “how.” Responses should outline your key process information that addresses approach, deployment, learning, and integration. Responses lacking such information, or merely providing an example, are referred to as “anecdotal information.
2. Understand the meaning of “what.”
Two types of questions in Process Items begin with the word “what.” The first type of question requests basic information on key processes and how they work. Although it is helpful to include who performs the work, merely stating who does not permit diagnosis or feedback. The second type of question requests information on what your key findings, plans, objectives, goals, or measures are. These latter questions set the context for showing alignment and integration in your performance management system. For example, when you identify key strategic objectives, your action plans, human resource plans, some of your performance measures, and some results reported in Category 7 are expected to relate to the stated strategic objectives.
3. Write and review response(s) with the following guidelines and comments in mind.
Show that approaches are systematic.
Systematic approaches are repeatable and use data and information to enable learning. In other words, approaches are systematic if they build in the opportunity for evaluation, improvement, innovation, and knowledge sharing, thereby permitting a gain in maturity.
Show deployment. Deployment information should summarize how your approaches are implemented in different parts of your organization. Deployment can be shown compactly by using tables.
Show evidence of learning. Processes should include evaluation and improvement cycles, as well as the potential for breakthrough change. Process improvements should be shared with other appropriate units of the organization to enable organizational learning.
Show integration. Integration shows alignment and harmonization among processes, plans, measures, and actions that generate organizational effectiveness and efficiencies.
Show focus and consistency. There are four important considerations regarding focus and consistency: (1) the Organizational Profile should make clear what is important; (2) the Strategic Planning Category, including the strategic objectives and action plans, should highlight areas of greatest focus and describe how deployment is accomplished; (3) descriptions of organizational-level analysis and review (Item 4.1) should show how your organization analyzes and reviews performance information to set priorities; and (4) Category 6, Process Management, should highlight core competencies and work processes that are key to your overall performance. Showing focus and consistency in the Process Items and tracking corresponding measures in the Results Items should improve organizational performance.
Respond fully to Item requirements.Missing information will be interpreted as a gap in your performance management system. All Areas to Address should be addressed. Individual questions within an Area to Address may be addressed individually or together.
4. Cross-reference when appropriate.
As much as possible, each Item response should be self-contained. However, responses to different Items also should be mutually reinforcing. It is then appropriate to refer to the other responses rather than repeat information. In such cases, key process information should be given in the Item requesting this information.
5. Use a compact format.
Applicants should make the best use of the application pages permitted. Applicants are encouraged to use flowcharts, tables, and “bullets” to present information concisely.
Guidelines for Responding to Results Items
The Criteria place a major emphasis on results. The following information, guidelines, and example relate to effective and complete reporting of results.
1. Focus on the most critical organizational performance results.
Results reported should cover the most important requirements for your organization’s success, highlighted in your Organizational Profile and in the Strategic Planning, Customer and Market Focus, and Process Management Categories.
2. Note the meaning of the four key requirements from the Scoring Guidelines for effective reporting of results data:
- performance levels that are reported on a meaningful measurement scale
- trends to show directions of results and rates of change
- comparisons to show how results compare with those of other, appropriately selected organizations
- breadth and importance of results to show that all important results are included and segmented (e.g., by important customer, workforce, process, and product line groups)
3. Include trend data covering actual periods for tracking trends.
No minimum period of time is specified for trend data. Trends might span five years or more for some results. Trends should represent historic and current performance and not rely on projected (future) performance. Time intervals between data points should be meaningful for the specific measure(s) reported. For important results, new data should be included even if trends and comparisons are not yet well established.
4. Use a compact format-graphs and tables.
Many results can be reported compactly by using graphs and tables. Graphs and tables should be labeled for easy interpretation. Results over time or compared with others should be “normalized” (i.e., presented in a way, such as using ratios, that takes into account size factors). For example, reporting safety trends in terms of lost work days per 100 employees would be more meaningful than total lost work days if the number of employees has varied over the time period or if you are comparing your results to organizations differing in size.
5. Integrate results into the body of the text.
Discussion of results and the results themselves should be close together in an Award application. Trends that show a significant positive or negative change should be explained. Use figure numbers that correspond to Items. For example, the third figure for Item 7.1 would be Figure 7.1-3.