During business process modeling, a BPM technical/management team creates or tunes a business process model that supports the project’s objectives. What are the mental processes of the team members modeling and developing business processes and connecting business events and rules? They use workshops and communication. They interview the best-performing and the worst-performing actors in the processes. They review financial reports, documentation and the notes of the managers of the current process. They identify triggering events, business rules and the process needs for policies. They design the proper flow control. They create pictorial representations.
There are institutional or traditional ways of gathering information about a process. However, few organizations know when it is time to add process thinking and business process management to formalize activities—there is no process to create new topics.
Legacy efforts create reams of paper, cabinets full of files, and databases overflowing with useful information—from management directives to marketing papers to MIS memorandums. Much important information exists here. Yet, business process modeling is different from knowledge management, quality reviews or even data modeling. The purpose of data modeling is to develop a model of what is. The purpose of business process modeling is to develop a model of what should be. Yet, how does an organization decide it is time to gather ad-hoc and undocumented activities and add the structure of business process management?
It is self-apparent to look at a factory production line and know that there is a process present; how do we discover the need for a process? Symptoms of missing process needs include:
- Poor business or financial performance in a rapid, surprised way
- Low morale and high employee turnover
- Management overwhelm, (many decisions, little data)
- Poor communications
There are other symptoms; however, deciding and clarifying when to create a process can liberate these conditions and improve business results. A well designed process has these characteristics
- Clear goals
- Well defined roles
- Improved clarity
- Increased visibility
We have identified a series of steps to deciding and delineating a ‘green fields’ or occult process in the enterprise business process framework.