Some Assembly Required

blaze pizzaCustomized pizza? It almost sounds silly. A Blaze Pizza franchise opened in our town this year and it is really quite amazing. Sure they feature a super-thin crust, which violates my New York-style pizza roots, but they use quality ingredients to create my very own tasty and satisfying pizza in about 5 minutes.

The thing is that Blaze refers to the process as their “pizza assembly line”. Let’s be honest: “assembly line” does not invoke a mental image of a custom, high quality outcome. It may be my project management background, but I think “pizza routing” is much more on target!

At Blaze, the job starts as a concept communicated to the order taker and then my pizza is routed through potential change orders at the sauce, cheese, protein, and veggie artisan stations through to the pizzasmith (at the oven). The pizza-project takes shape as each team member communicates with each other and with me.

All that for a 5-minute, $8 pizza-project. It’s no surprise that strong routing becomes critical for longer, more complex projects involving hundreds of tasks and contributors.

A good project management system includes routing infrastructure so that one team member can hand off a task to another without blurring the identity of the task—whether it be an RFI, Change Order, or artisan pizza. Many companies still try to accomplish something like routing with email, but then the fact that every email has its own separate identity and life cycle becomes a huge obstacle. Important details are lost in scattered emails far too frequently.

With true routing:

  • The contribution of each team member that touches the task is recorded.
  • Responsibility and accountability are enhanced.
  • All state and progress information are in one place, fully associated with the task.

The Spitfire Project Management System, in particular, makes routing easy, flexible, smart, and automated: you can add names on-the-fly, use options to quickly fill in your routing distribution list, or take advantage of predefined routes that are used automatically. Our free demo can show you exactly how better routing can add to your productivity and accuracy.

After all, even when there is a long line at Blaze Pizza (because they are popular), the line moves quickly and the right pizza is handed to the right person, because their “routing” system works so well.

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About Stan York

Stan York (VP of Development at Spitfire) has been developing software for decades. Which means he's old enough to remember when punched cards where the state of the art UI. Stan makes no secret about the fact he often prefers data to people, so it should come as no surprise that he is an expert in databases and SQL server. If asked, he might admit he is an MCP, because he knows this is important to some people, particularly at Microsoft. The postings on this site are his own and don’t necessarily represent Spitfire's positions, strategies or opinions.

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