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Products & Services >> Best Practices Database >> Best Practices Database FAQ

Best Practices Database

Frequently Asked Questions


Database Access & Pricing

Database documents are viewed online. Database subscribers click on document titles and link right to the content – thousands of documents are at a subscriber’s immediate disposal. If you have not yet subscribed to the database, see our Database Membership Benefits page or purchase individual documents through our shopping cart technology. You can read your documents online after purchase.

Members of our database subscribe to gain access to the database year-round. Subscription is much more cost effective than per-document purchases for business professionals who have a number of information demands over time. Subscribers purchase access to the database on an annual basis and can access thousands of research documents around the clock. Membership or subscription to the database is separate from membership in our Global Benchmarking Council. GBC members, however, do receive a substantial discount on our subscription rates. Go to Database Membership Benefits

Subscription gives full access to thousands of database reports in real time. If you only have a short-term need for information, you can use our shopping cart technology to purchase documents. Simply follow the easy steps below to purchase documents:

  • Drill down on relevant subjects using the “Browse Database” navigator or perform a keyword search to locate documents.
  • Read the first few lines of the documents that interest you.
  • Add a document to your cart by clicking on the “Add to Cart” button.
  • View items in your cart at any time by clicking on the “View Cart” button.
  • Process your transaction on our secure e-commerce site by following the simple processing instructions on your “View Cart” page. Enter your credit card information and CyberCash will process your purchase in seconds.
  • Link directly to your database documents through the web page that appears once the transaction is approved. Bookmark this page and click on the links to read your documents. View all your content online - nothing will be shipped to you.

Documents and reports sold on our website are available at a tiny fraction of what a typical consulting engagement costs. Clients are the driving forces of our reports and outline specific topics, questions and companies to profile. Study results provide specific analysis and recommendations for the clients’ system and competitive position. Since our clients are world-class companies that know the industry-leading issues, dollar for dollar, we believe you receive the best benchmarking insights available. Most database documents are offered at a flat rate. Some of the more thorough documents go for a slightly higher rate.

Annual database subscribers receive a user name and password to gain access to the database. Subscriptions are priced based on individual user access, which means that purchasers are not allowed to share access/login information. Workgroup, department, or organization-wide access is priced based on the anticipated volume and number of users. Contact our database team for more information on wide-scale subscriptions.

All content generated by Best Practices LLC is copyrighted, including the documents in the Best Practice Database. You may share documents with colleagues inside your company or organization at no additional cost. Additionally, you may quote any content up to two pages in length in your internal work as long as our company is attributed. You must receive specific written permission from our firm prior to using any combined content that is longer than two pages. Finally, external use of our material (quotes in articles, use in consulting engagements, etc.) is strictly prohibited unless specific permission is granted and any applicable licensing fees are negotiated.

Database Content

BestPracticeDatabase.com is a database website and service of Best Practices LLC, a business research, advisory and publishing firm founded in 1992 by a group of service professionals with roots at the Harvard Business School. Specializing in best practice identification and benchmarking, we serve clients in all industries. Our firm offers a suite of performance improvement services, including Process-Focused Research, Best Practice Surveys, Lessons-Learned Interviews, Site Visits, and Advisory services.

This site offers original best practice insights via the Internet. We provide clients with real-time, searchable access to best practice documents, usually 2-12 pages in length. Clients can purchase comprehensive benchmarking studies from Best Practices, LLC. Studies are available in report format are usually 50-300 pages in length and provide quick, concise action plans for improving corporate processes.

To us, "best practices" are documented strategies and tactics employed by highly admired companies. These companies are not "best-in-class" in every area - such a company does not exist. But due to the nature of competition and their drive for excellence, the profiled practices have been implemented and honed to help place their practitioners as the most admired, the most profitable, and the keenest competitors in business.

We gather this information from a variety of sources. For the most part, this information is based on interviews, surveys, and other mechanisms of "primary" research-- information that is simply not available in the public sector. Other sources include secondary research -- books, magazines, libraries, Internet, and other public-domain resources. Unlike other resources that simply rehash or republish releases and articles, we analyze and synthesize our primary and secondary research into world-class insights and practices yielding much greater value than the sum of the research parts.

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Best Practices, LLC researchers extract best practice documents from the hundreds of benchmarking studies conducted by Best Practices, LLC over the years. Real world issues articulated by our clients and customers drive the subjects we research. Researchers gather information through interviews with executives and examination of best-in-class companies. We then analyze and synthesize the research to highlight trends, findings, and insights. Finally, we add applicable metrics, tables, graphs, and figures to add additional value. Our proven research methodology ensures the original content and real world applications presented in each report and database document.

Many of our documents do provide such numerical insight when it is relevant and provided by the sources. While such numbers are useful in determining the performance gaps, they typically provide little insight into how to close that gap, or better yet, leapfrog the competition. That’s why our documents focus on the practices, systems, and processes that companies use to achieve excellence. With this insight, you can build a plan based on the practices of many top companies, taking the best from the best and applying it to your company’s culture and current business issue.

Most database documents are related to a comprehensive benchmarking study we’ve conducted in that particular area. To obtain more information on the research areas, click on the report information button at the bottom of the document to purchase the published report online. These reports - usually over 100 pages in length - provide comprehensive action plans for improving corporate processes and cost thousands less than a consulting engagement on the subject.

While there are thousands of resources available on the Internet, very few are dedicated to identifying and communicating best business practices. In addition, those that are out there are often times simply "portals," gathering many different news releases and articles and organizing them on your desktop.

BestPracticeDatabase.com, however, is the only resource available generated from interviews with the executives that lead and manage the processes. Best Practices LLC conducts the interviews -- they are original, probing, and valuable. The documents identify implemented practices at these companies -- not theoretical consulting models. Interview findings and company practices are rigorously screened to ensure they are truly world-class in nature. Database documents are reviewed and added weekly, ensuring that the freshest insights and topics are presented to subscribers and users. When applicable and available, additional detail (including metrics and performance measures) are included. No other resource provides such original content -- not rehashed press releases or mainstream press articles -- across such a diverse set of topics at anywhere near the depth provided our customers.

Duplicating our efforts at obtaining and communicating these insights and practices would be truly monumental for most organizations. That's what makes this resource unique.

Online Transactions

BestPracticeDatabase.com employs CyberCash shopping cart technology (the world's leading provider of Secure Electronic Commerce Payment Solutions) on a secure server to process our transactions. We do not store your credit card information on our server to ensure maximum security for your transaction. Of course, if you still don’t feel secure, we will process credit card orders over the phone. We can also invoice for subscriptions with valid purchase orders.

While we prefer users to purchase database subscriptions or documents online, we are happy to accommodate other payment methods. We will invoice for subscriptions with valid purchase order numbers. Or, we will process credit card orders by phone for subscriptions and document orders over $50.

You can view all documents online; they are not shipped. Annual subscribers simply click on a document title to read the document. Non-subscribers are directed to a “Thank You” page following approval of their credit card. The “Thank You” page provides hyperlinks to each purchased document. Simply click on a link and read the document.

Non-subscribers are presented with a “Thank You” page after they complete a credit card purchase. This page provides their order number and hyperlinks to the purchased documents. You must bookmark this page to return to your documents after closing your browser. If you lose track of your “Thank You” links page, our database team will generate a new one for a $15 fee. Simply provide your order number (or ordering information), and we will create a new page for you and forward the URL via e-mail.

Refunds and Discounts

Best Practices, LLC offers several discount options on database subscriptions. Individuals from companies that are members of our Global Benchmarking Council or our Business Excellence Board may purchase annual database access at a discount off normal corporate rates. Academic institutions also receive a substantial discount off corporate rates. Volume-based subscriptions are available for parties negotiating large-user or site-wide licenses. Discounts are not offered on our pay-per-document service.

We are proud of the content, insights, and benefits yielded to members of this Database. If you are dissatisfied with your experience, and we are not able to restore your confidence in our material, we will credit you a prorated amount for any of the unused time on your membership toward a future purchase of another service or product. To receive a credit, you must contact our office and provide us with your ordering information and the reason for your dissatisfaction.

Our e-commerce solution is state-of-the-art, but not perfect. If you encounter difficulties in making your purchase, please try the following:

  • If you receive an error message after entering your credit card information, difficulties may be the result of heavy traffic or an error in completing the forms. Please review your form entries to ensure that all information is correct (especially names, credit card billing addresses and numbers, etc.), then click the “Pay Now” button again. If the transaction still does not work, please call our office. We’ll be happy to complete the order over the phone.
  • You may receive error messages or blank pages if your browser does not enable features used by this site. The latest versions of Internet Explorer or Netscape Navigator are recommended. Java and cookies must be enabled to complete the transactions.
  • If you still experience difficulties, consider closing your browser and opening it again. Clear your browser cache (temporary Internet files) and return to our site. As with most software applications, sometimes a restart of the computer is needed.
  • If difficulties persist, we would be happy to assist you via e-mail or phone. Just contact our team for any additional assistance you might require.

Other

Our database team stands ready to assist you in making the most of this truly valuable service. Contact us by email or phone (919) 403-0251 for any issues or inquiries you may have.