Showing posts with label Hoshin Karni. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Hoshin Karni. Show all posts

October 8, 2007

Hoshin Kanri and Enterprise Architecture

“Hoshin Kanri is a strategic planning methodology that uses a Shewhart Cycle (Plan-Do-Check-Act) to create goals, assign measurable milestones, and assess progress.” (Adapted from Wikipedia)

In Hoshin Kanri (HK) “the vision must be shared by all, so that everybody acts (at his own level) consistently to hit targets. Each company layer or function defines its own targets, according to the top ones. The principle goes cascading down to the base (vertical diffusion) or in coordination between divisions (horizontal collaboration) or a mix of both. The concept’s idea states: if all underlying objectives are met, the higher objective is automatically met, and so on, cascading up.”


The four phases:

  1. Plan— higher objectives set by uppermost authority and in cascading fashion, each sub-division defines its own objectives, based on the level above (alignment phase).
  2. Do—everyone carries out their objectives
  3. Check—monitor, evaluate, and report on progress
  4. Action—make course corrections to improve the process and achievement of results (Adapted from Wikipedia)

In general, setting the ‘right’ objectives means they should be SMART:

  1. Specific
  2. Measurable
  3. Achievable (yet ambitious)
  4. Realistic
  5. Time-Specific

(adapted from

In HK objectives should also:

  • Improve current ways of doing things (efficiency, effectiveness, cost-savings…)
  • Innovate (new techniques, technologies…)

How does HK differ from Management By Objective (MBO)?

  • HK is focused on the process, while MBO is focused on the target
  • HK defines how it will achieve the target, while MBO does not
  • HK uses lot of communications and builds consensus (horizontally and vertically in the organization), while MBO is more top-down management

(adapted from

In short, Hoshin Kanri seems like an evolution of Management by Objective.

The methodology and principles of Hoshin Kanri is a terrific match with User-centric EA. Both focus on developing SMART plans, improving processes, using innovative (yet trusted) technologies to meet mission and user needs, communicating clearly with stakeholders, and building consensus on a way ahead.