History of Benchmarking
Bullivant divides the history of benchmarking into five periods, namely:
Phase 1 Reverse engineering (1950-1975): dissecting products from the competition in order to identify technical improvements and then copy them.
Phase 2 Competitive benchmarking (1976-1986): people try to learn from both the processes and the products of the competition.
Phase 3 Process benchmarking (1982-1988): people mainly want to learn from 'best in class performers' with whom they do not compete.
Phase 4 Strategic benchmarking (1988+): the learning is not so much focused on the processes, but on fundamental change of the 'business'.
Phase 5 Global benchmarking (1993+): people want to learn from organizations that essentially perform the same activity in a completely different external context, for example in other parts of the world or in different cultures. (Benchmarking for continuous improvement in the public sector, Essex, 1994).