The Challenges with process modeling
“Process Modeling is tough for business users to understand”, “Process modeling is complex”, “I do not see any value in Process modeling” there are some of the common notions among we heard from many organizations both, the ones who have used P.M and those who haven’t.
The question is whether process modeling is actually a complex and non-value adding concept? To answer this, unfortunately, the answer is yes. As long as process modeling is considered just a ‘flow diagram’ P.M will never add value to your organization. But the fact is, process models are not just another documentation method or standard operating procedures, the purpose of P.M is very wide.
What do you mean by process modeling?
It is a powerful method to integrate business vision with strategies, business objectives, process KPI’s to business processes. Process models are the simple yet powerful tool to visualize your business process and understand what is working fine and what is not. It is the fastest approach to see, understand and evaluate end to end processes.
However, in order to make utmost use of it, the following are some important elements to be taken considered:
1. Process Architecture: A Bigger Picture:
Unless you know your bigger picture, you can design and evaluate the output of process modeling. By a big picture, we mean a complete Business Architecture consisting of multiple value chains or just one value chain. A big picture of the organization helps it to remain focused and align all business processes accordingly.
2. Process Modeling Conventions:
Before starting your journey, it is essential to first define your process modeling excellence framework, also known as Process Modeling Conventions. In the absence of P.M conventions or if the defined conventions are overlooked, there’s a high probability that you end up creating complex business process. This will hamper the business users to understand the right intentions of the process.
3. Process Collaboration:
You can never achieve what is desired unless business users collaborate on the business processes. P.M must collaborate business users to discuss, evaluate, comment, and propose an improvement in business processes. More collaboration results in better understanding and acceptance.
4. Modelling Measurement:
Can you measure the effectiveness of your processes? If the answer is no, you are missing one of the critical elements of process modeling. The effectiveness of process modeling must be measured to ensure that we are aligned towards our big picture and expected values. Talk to your stakeholders and find, what is really needed by them from the process information. Define your measurements accordingly and measure the effectiveness of process modeling for the set measurement criteria.
5. Project Management:
Impractical timelines, over expected deliverable’s , are some attributes of ineffective project management. IF P.M is not planned, monitored and controlled through effective project management, it will result in frustration among the business users and modelers. Before starting P.M , estimate efforts and time involved in each process while keeping in mind the process conventions. It’s not only effective planning that matters but monitoring and controlling are equally important.
6. Know Your Challenges:
Quite often, we get impressed with the work of competitor organizations. We then compare their apparent information with that of our own organization. Comparing is fine, but the problem is when you conclude that your organization does not have such structured information. One must consider that the organization which now has detailed and structured information began their journey with issues similar to that of your organization. What rather needs to be acknowledged is that those organization also faced the same problems as you face today, but during the journey, they evolved and got there where they are now. Document list of your challenges, your expectations and plan your journey accordingly. Define your 30-60- 90 days journey and post that repeat it for the next level of maturity.
7. Process Governance:
Every process must have clearly defined roles and responsibilities. R.A.C.I (Responsible, Accountable, Consultant, and Informed to) are important roles for a process. You must never define Responsible or accountable to a department, that’s wrong. In process modeling, define right process governance so that weak areas can be identified and improved.
Process Modeling can help you evolve and grow, all you need is to dedicate proper time to build it!