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What is EPSS?

EPSS (Electronic Performance Support System)...
Custom Designed to Give Your Firm a Competitive Edge

EPSS Pays Off For IOA Re With Improved Productivity

The staff of this reinsurer faced the tedious and discouraging process of issuing insurance applications and certificates. The company looked to Leewood Associates and EPSS for a solution. Leewood automated repetitive tasks with a series of macros and templates in Corel WordPerfect and also integrated on-line help into the process.

IOA Re of Pennsylvania and its staff experienced three immediate benefits of its new electronic performance support system:

  • Significantly increased productivity
  • Enhanced personal job satisfaction
  • A sharp decrease in the time consumed by the process

EPSS Grew Out Of Best Practices

It began in 1991 when Gloria Gery analyzed different systems in corporations. She wanted to know:

How were some companies able to benefit more than others from technology?

Her findings were published in the book Electronic Performance Support Systems: How and Why to Remake the Workplace Through the Strategic Application of Technology (Galagan, 1994).

Immediately, EPSS became the new hot topic because it had practical applications. It pointed the way to improved job performance and greater organizational competitiveness.

Exactly What Is EPSS?

There are as many different definitions of EPSS as there are types of tea, but the one we enjoy the most is by Barry Raybould, a leader in EPSS:

"The electronic infrastructure that captures, stores and distributes individual and corporate knowledge assets throughout an organization, to enable individuals to achieve required levels of performance in the fastest possible time and with a minimum of support from other people."

The vital elements of an EPSS structure are:

EPSS Element


Capture, store and distribute

Networks and software easily accommodate the distribution of these tools and the information captured by them.

Individual and corporate knowledge assets

View corporate knowledge as an asset as well as individual knowledge.

Required levels of performance

With performance support tools, the minimum level of performance can be raised, allowing an overall increase in performance for the organization.

Fastest possible time

Time is also an asset and can be assigned a monetary value.

Minimum of support from others

This also incorporates the element of time and encourages the learners to be independent.

Electronic Performance Support Systems Are Friendly and Easy-To-Use Visual Tools That Make Complicated Tasks Simple

Macros, wizards, templates, and other Electronic Performance Support Tools are proven to have an immediate and positive impact on the learner's attitude and performance and... on the bottom line.

Not surprisingly, they also provide answers to tough organizational challenges such as:

  • The need for consistency and standardization
  • High turnover in personnel
  • Downsizing of IS personnel
  • Expensive and extensive technology training


EPSS Value

Need for consistency and standardization throughout documents

Consistency and standardization is embedded within the templates - no more standards manual!

Paper-based forms

Document automation using templates and wizards increases performance and productivity.

Growing body of “Corporate Knowledge”

The knowledge needed to perform a complicated task would be imbedded within a tool and easily dispersed to the desktop.

Need for increased efficiency and performance

Task completion is streamlined and eliminates the need to learn entire software applications.

High turnover in personnel

The knowledge needed to perform a complicated task would be imbedded within the tool and not in an individual’s head.

Extensive and expensive technology training is needed before employees are productive

Training time is reduced since task details can be incorporated into EPSS tools.

Down-sizing of IS personnel

Minimal support from other people including the Help Desk is required.

How Can EPSS Help You?

Does your company have knowledge and tasks that are specific, procedural, or skill-based?

If you answered "yes," then automated wizards, macros, templates, and other EPSS tools can improve productivity and enhance user performance and satisfaction.

Does your firm have corporate knowledge assets that are too cumbersome or too complicated to be taught in a single training event?

That's where you get the biggest bang for the buck.

A training event often introduces learners to the EPSS tools. Then, the macros, templates, and wizards take over and enable your staff to grasp the details on an as-needed basis when they are ready. Your staff feels less stress when they have the answers at their fingertips.

A reduction in training time and a decrease in the support required can optimize productivity gains for your company.

Our list of Recent Projects demonstrates the range of issues addressed, the types of tools utilized, and the results companies like yours are achieving through EPSS.

Contact us for a free analysis to reveal how EPSS can "remake your workplace" to give you a significant competitive advantage.

Contact Suzanne Lafarge
Leewood Associates
775 Birdell Road, Honey Brook, PA 19344
phone: 610-273-2113 fax: 610-621-5214

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Leewood Associates: Electronic Performance Support Solutions (EPSS) for Everyone

"You must simplify. You must make the complex things simple. Then you must make it work."
     - I. M. Pei, Master Architect

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