Suggestion System as a Facility in Developing Employee Idea


30 Oct 2009

Nowadays, in the middle world business competition, organization is being hoped to make improvement so it can survive in a competition. Nevertheless, organization needs to do continuous improvement in organization. Every organization needs a system which enables organization to improve faster and accurate to face competition. Organizations also need spirit-based improvement, that is Kaizen philosophy which means a better change and continuous improvement.


The picture above shows that every level in the organization has responsibility on continuous improvement. The higher managerial level in organizations, the more tasks a staff has in continuous improvement and innovation.

One of the systems which are based on continuous improvement or Kaizen spirit is Suggestion System. Suggestion System is a management system which involves employees on quality improvement. The employees may suggest their ideas for better organization. It can be said that suggestion system is Kaizen realization because there is an effort for quality improvement that is developed on:

  • Continuous effort
  • The involved employee even though its small (quantity creating quality)
  • Employee's passion and creativity

Suggestion System position in company management is shown by the picture below:

From the picture, we saw that Suggestion System is more dedicated to performer level, so it can be said that the Suggestion System is one of the system in Total Quality Management (TQM) because TQM represents management system which involves all personnel in the organization.

The implementation of the Suggestion System has developed in some countries, such as Japan . In eighties, there so many companies that has implemented the Suggestion System, they were Matsushita (Panasonic), Hitachi , Mazda, Toyota , etc.

The objectives of Suggestion System are to collect ideas which may be dedicated to:

  • Increase selling. For example: idea to increase service, product image, product selection, etc
  • Decrease cost. For example: how to work more efficient, decreasing defects in products, overtime, useless and inconsistent.

The Suggestion System is generally implemented in these forms:

Suggestion System Program usually is developed step by step:

  • Participation : the employee are pushed to participate
  • Skill : the employee are training to make creative suggestion
  • Result orientation: the suggestions' were graded based on the productivity's benefit.


The accepted suggestion is not always a big thing but the small things that occurs in the work area. The above picture is one of suggestion example.

Suggestion in the suggestion system has some certain criteria. Usually the unexpected suggestions are:

  1. Abstract suggestion, illusion; unrealistic (ex: all automatic work)
  2. Suggestion about opinion, hope and complain (ex: the lunch is too sweet)
  3. Suggestion about working hour, salary, rewarding, promotion and mutation
  4. Suggestion that doesn't make any improvement such as authority delegation to sub ordinate or inferior
  5. Fragmented suggestion
  6. Suggestion which is related to big investment
  7. Management policy

The Implementation of Suggestion System in the Company
There are general steps in implementing suggestion system inside the company:

  1. The making of the committee
  2. Introducing the Suggestion System
  3. The employee gives the suggestion
  4. The chairman responses to the incoming suggestion
  5. Evaluating and awarding the advice
  6. Announcing the accepted suggestion


The Making of The Suggestion System Team
The Suggestion System are formed to help management (not to take over) in preparing, performing and rewarding the Suggestion System. This usually consists of some stages, which are:

  1. Planning
    • Management Policy
    • Suggestion System Organization
    • Event coordination
    • Annual work plan
    • Arrange the guide book for the suggestion system
  2. Execution
    • Coordinate introducing and execution of the suggestion system
  3. Evaluation
    • Coordinate the events
    • Monitor and evaluate the suggestion system program periodically


Introducing The Suggestion System Program
The supervisor must introduce suggestion system, such as explaining guidance book suggestion system and held a short meeting employee.
The objectives of the meetings are:

  1. To encourage the employee to participate
  2. To invite the employees to suggest their idea
  3. To drive the improvement
  4. To establish the group skill and cooperation


Employee Gives the Idea / Suggestion
After socialize the program, the next steps are:

  • The employee develops the sense of problem
  • The employee develops better ideas in working


The Chairman Responses to the Incoming Suggestion
The Chairman should response the suggestion and motivate employee with good, He should:

  • Welcome every idea
  • Check the employee idea
  • Try to understand the background of their idea and developing the idea better
  • Drive the idea to the potential way
  • Praise the good things
  • Help by giving clue and advice
  • Explain the rejection reason and guarantee all the next effort
  • Help the implementation of the accepted idea


Role of the Chairman as Suggestion System Guide

  • Not to know everything but to learn together
  • Not to give answer but to give the right question
  • Not to direct the discussion but to guide
  • Not one way communication but two way
  • Not to give task but to help learning
  • Not to establish the target but to guide
  • Not upper oriented but lower oriented
  • Not to keep the distance but to join together
  • Not to order but to invite
  • Not to talk to much but to hear
  • Not to act as a boss but a servant without payment


Evaluating and Awarding the Suggestion
Evaluating and awarding was given when the suggestion has been accepted or after the idea is being done. The awarding factors are:

  1. Utilization (tangible and intangible)
  2. Difficulty level
  3. Implementation in the other place
  4. Negative impact
  5. Continuous utilization (long term or short term)
  6. Provision
  7. Originality
  8. Big effort to make an idea
  9. Quality target


The rewards are settled based on:

  • Participation level:
  • average, merely
  • Accepted and unaccepted
  • Donation level
  • Suitable with the amount of donation to the company
  • Awarding policy
  • Personal Task
  • Group Task
  • Financial and non Financial


The Announcing the Accepted Advice
The accepted idea should be announced to all employees as awarding and acknowledgement act and also encouragement to another employee to give their suggestion.

If all employees have participated in improving and increasing the organization, the organization can survive in world business competition. Interesting system isn't it?

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