Creato: Combining Quality with Sustainable Improvement Capability

Ian R. Lazarus, President & CEO
As companies struggle to remain competitive, it is inevitable that they take a look at their operations internally to see what can be done to produce products and services better, faster and cheaper. Common investments include training and technology. However it is typical that these investments produce only short-term benefits, and management often bemoans the fact any improvements they make are short-lived. This is because these organizations deal with superficial aspects of the pain point rather than understanding the root cause of the problem. “Businesses need to go beyond technology to sustain improvement as no amount of technology will fix a broken process,” says Ian R. Lazarus, President and CEO of Creato Performance Solutions. Creato effectively addresses this challenge by providing training to leaders to create an environment for improvement while deploying technology infrastructure to sustain the changes. “We are not a company that just sells technology or consulting, we have a broad portfolio to provide clients with what we call ‘sustainable improvement capability,’” says Lazarus.

Two decades back, Creato started out to serve the quality management needs of the healthcare industry. Lazarus recalls Peter Drucker’s statement describing healthcare as “the most complex organization ever devised by man,” and if Creato could transform such an intricate space, today, the company is poised to serve the needs of a much broader segment of the industry.

As the foremost step, Creato identifies the stage at which the clients are in their change management journey. If an organization is far along their journey and all they need is technology infrastructure, then the company offers its easily customizable quality management system—COMPASS®. With its award-winning idea management module, COMPASS captures both the perception and the reality around the value of an idea. While the perception of the improvement opportunity having greatest support is gathered from the workforce, the reality is measured based on the impact of the idea on various criteria like improved quality vs reduced costs. Here the ideas convert to projects that will subsequently leverage COMPASS’ project management features and enable organizations to gain visibility around all the improvement work being done.

On the other hand, if a client is charting its path towards improvement to become organizationally competent, Creato offers training in emotionally intelligent leadership.

We are not a company that just sells technology or consulting, we have broad portfolio to deliver ‘sustainable improvement capability’ in the companies we serve

“We are fundamentally changing the organizations from within, by changing the corporate DNA. Through an empirical process, we help the leadership team to understand the causes for their dysfunctional behavior and create an effective environment for change,” says Lazarus. Creato identifies the most qualified individuals to be involved in the change management initiative and subsequently trains them onsite as well as online, and then deploys the COMPASS system to guide their improvement journey.

In one instance, one of largest hospitals in the U.S., Grady Health, stands testament to COMPASS’ stellar capabilities. In addition to tapping into various improvement opportunities, the clinical decisions support team at Grady receives numerous requests from physicians pursuing fellowship, and other clinicians involved in research. COMPASS helped them overcome the challenge of prioritizing research requests as well as identifying daily improvement opportunities. Further, they will be using COMPASS to solve a third problem of documenting nursing projects, allowing nurses to improve the quality of care they provide to achieve “Magnet” status— an award for hospitals that create an exceptional environment for nursing.

For the coming years, the company will vest its focus in a two-fold approach. Creato is developing a mobile app with the idea management features of COMPASS. This will allow clients to deploy COMPASS in a handheld form to the workforce where they can input their ideas. The company is also planning to upgrade its tools to reduce dependency on Excel as well as provide the ability to capture more data and expand into the area of business analytics.


San Diego, CA

Ian R. Lazarus, President & CEO

Provides Lean and Six Sigma training as well as technology solutions for performance improvement and quality management