Professional Consulting Chapter 4 - Introduction to Business Process Design | Dan Grijzenhout | Skillshare

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Professional Consulting Chapter 4 - Introduction to Business Process Design

teacher avatar Dan Grijzenhout, Over 35 years of business experience

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

5 Lessons (33m)
    • 1. Thoughts on Business Process Design / Re-Engineering

    • 2. Business Process Design - Part One

    • 3. Business Process Design - Part Two

    • 4. Business Process Design - Concluding Lecture

    • 5. Building Business Cases

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About This Class


Professional Consulting Chapter 4 - Introduction to Business Process Design

This class is written for those individuals working within a corporation that are looking for some structure that may assist them when given the unenviable task of “Re-Engineering” the corporation’s business processes and information systems in an effort to follow new directional and operational strategies developed by the corporation’s leadership body.

The goals of this class are to provide a structural framework to approaching a Business Process Design / Re-Engineering effort, to provide insights as to how best to complete the work that needs to be done to ensure that what is created is fully aligned on completion with the directional strategies of the corporate leadership team, and to provide an overview for the tasks that need to be completed in order to achieve the actual implementation of the new processes and supporting information systems.

This class also pays respect to and incorporates the frequently changing dynamics of process within corporations due to the rapidity with which current technological innovations are pushing change, forcing new operational directions and value chain re-definitions.

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Dan Grijzenhout

Over 35 years of business experience


About Dan Grijzenhout: For close to thirty years, I've been a professional business and information systems consulting professional working to executive levels for both private and public sector organizations globally, a number of which were "Fortune" level enterprises. I've built from scratch, operated and sold an online global payment services company that moves millions of dollars on behalf of its 100,000 plus account holders annually; I've been interviewed on the show "World Business Review" by former head of NATO and Secretary of State, General Alexander Haig, for my work in advanced digital and online telecommunications services and nation-wide online and card based "Loyalty" programs; and I now work at writing books and building training programs to share my years of experience w... See full profile

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1. Thoughts on Business Process Design / Re-Engineering: welcomed a few thoughts on business process, re engineering, business process, re engineering or be PR in his truce farm should always take a top down approach to ensure its efforts are in full alignment with the core vision of the corporation is core values, its overall desire business model and the core purpose and task that the corporation needs to perform well to deliver the products, services and value to its customers that help it to be successful and profitable. True, often targeted be PR efforts take place of deep within a corporation were only small subsets of it are being re architected, but knowledge of the above visions, values and model should never be lost sight of even in a target, a DPR effort. Following are several guiding principles or best practices that have given me practical guidance use with clients when undertaking process re engineering projects. A couple of her mind and a fewer from others such as my camera was 1994 book Reengineering the corporation. Getting people cognizant of these principles throughout a B P R effort can help you process facilitation workshops and keep a client on track. Just point to these principles when you see a person with a personal stakes or agenda trying to take you off on a tangent due to personal interest, and it will help you bring them back into alignment. So here's my list. First, we will develop new processes in alignment with the business vision and the forecasts of the corporation, rather than trying to fix existing processes. Business process Re engineering will be done in partnership with business application and technology personnel to ensure the best possible results. Number three. We will not place constraints on the definition of the problem nor the scope of the re engineering effort. The focus will be on complete process streams, not organizational departments. Number four. We will not allow existing corporate cultures and management attitudes to interfere with finding the best possible solution for the organization as a whole. Number five, a professional with the required skill set, will lead each process design effort. Six. We will not pull back when we encounter resistance, and we will not settle for just marginal improvements in processes. Number seven took this from ah, Star Trek movie that I saw. We will remember that the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few or the one as you facilitate. There's a few concepts to keep in mind as you work your way through these workshops. Sessions. First off. Avoid getting too detailed too quickly. Work at a high level in and gradually drill down into greater levels of detail. Follow the 80 20 rule. Concentrate on the processes and applications that affect 8% of the people first and only tackle the other 20%. If there's time. Define a gap is anything the vanilla software can't do. If the process can't change at it to the guest and move on to the next process or functionality requirement. Don't get bogged down trying to solve the gap. Also, don't get stuck on the idea, but that's how we do it. Now. Be open minded to new approaches and explore them. High level, often found process categories resident within a corporation frequently include in terms of strategic business processes these air processes that deliver value to the organization in terms of using history or other management information. To make key strategic decisions for moving forward, four core business process types often include these leadership processes, strategic planning, process, effectiveness and manage alliance partners and stakeholders. Now let's look at what the core tasks of a corporation usually appear to be. These air the direct passive processes that deliver value to customers and stakeholders. Common core tests might include design products, developed products market, Purcell products, assemble products, integrated supply chain and factory activities, transports and logistics service and support products. Then we have the support processes and these processes providing direct support. It are no less important to the delivery of core value to the customer and the stakeholder and could include the fall financial stewardship, human resources, environment and safety contracts, management, public relations and communications facilities, engineering, maintenance, legal and insurance records management. In general, all processes having direct contact, center and or forming part of the value creation chain for the customer can be viewed as being external processes. As these activities air the main interface with the customer, they should be developed and guided to ensure the maximum level of empowerment to enable staff to get as close to the customers possible. This in order to the customer requirement on first contact. This assumes that employees air supported by the appropriate level of automation and training within a solid framework of policies to allow transactions and interactions to be handled within an adequately controlled environment. The processes that create value for the organization by enabling control management etcetera may be seen as being internal processes. These air, less geographically dependent on customer location and can be located wherever, makes logical sense for those initiating efforts to improve the way the organizations do business. I hope these few principles and guidelines will help you to be more successful. Thank you. 2. Business Process Design - Part One: introduction to business process Design Architect ING for competitive advantage in today's intensely competitive marketplace organizations, air spending is never before to bring new products and innovations to market quickly. They're spending to differentiate themselves in product and service quality, to maximize efficiency and to capture market share and deep in value. Chain penetration coupled with what can only be described as an explosion of new technological innovations, leading to new ways to capture customers and build revenue. Today's business and information systems communities air facing significant people and systems pressures. Old ways air just not working any longer, and radical change in the way of corporation conducts business is often required if it is to remain competitive. While many organizations desperately need to transform systems and processes to achieve their goals, too few have the required internal skills necessary to transform. Technically old information systems and high are quickly operated organizations into efficient, process centric companies. They're very structures, prohibit them from migrating systems and processes effectively to properly employ state of the art technologies that reduce or eliminate non value added work steps and processing dead times. That is to say, bottlenecks in time where nothing is happening at all today. Four major issues inhibit companies from achieving the utopia of process. First, many business managers do not understand the potential impacts and benefits of technology on their business. Secondly, information systems managers do not understand how to sell and motivate business management on technological innovation that would benefit the business. Next. Many organizations still attempt to create business strategies without adequate I t involvement. And finally, although using processes every day, very few companies master the art of effective process design. That is to say, building a consistent process design framework and using this framework to transform business processes in a consistent manner across the corporation coupling businesses lack of understanding As to the transformational aspects of today's technologies on process with I tease difficulty of articulating technology advances in terms of business benefit and impact management today frequently misses the opportunity to capitalize on technology at the business in process planning level. As a result, many business strategies defined are limited in both their vision and potential benefit to the corporation. Next, discussing the traditional strategic systems planning approach, Current strategic systems planning methodologies is approached by many companies today. Incorporate three basic stages, one understanding the business in the current state of information systems. This includes developing an understanding of the business vision, corporate goals and drivers, industry forces affecting strategies, strengths and weaknesses of the corporation, and a review of current systems with respect to meeting the business needs, present and future of the corporation. Secondly, developing a technology or architectural strategy that will improve the organization's ability to meet the current and future business needs of the corporation. And third, developing a strategic systems plan or migration strategy that identifies projects required to achieve the new architecture sequencing projects into quick hits, tactical short term projects and strategic longer term projects. There are a number of flaws with the above strategic planning approach to systems development that over time have resulted in many corporations spending much strategic investment capital with very little hard dollar returns on their investments being generated. For some, the strategic planning efforts have almost become make work projects for those looking for something to do or deflector projects. That is to say, I t department, saying I won't spend money on your business systems ideas until we get our strategic plan completed. Sound familiar core reasons The above efforts have such a high failure rate or achieve such mediocre results can usually be narrowed down to only a few core reasons. First, there is not enough corporate buying. The people chosen to do the work do not have the appropriate skills and knowledge to do the work. Consistent methods aren't used in baselines, are not clearly defined. They skipped the step of defining processes and mapping them to technologically created opportunities due to newly created innovations. And lastly, they do not know how to build good business cases for change that can be corporately accepted. What is laughing wrong with the current approaches being undertaken is that I t gets involved too late. The corporation assumes that business plans and business personnel articulate strategies and that I t then runs off to support them with technology solutions to meet the business objectives. To avoid limiting the vision of the corporation, I T needs to be involved up front, working with business executives to identify opportunities for enhancing business strategies and more innovative enterprise wide process and technology solutions. They need a seat at the table, but those that get the seat from the I T world need more skills toe work with business than many I T professionals currently exhibit. So for many skills upgrading is a requirement to illustrate these truths. In a recent Siris of workshops in a Fortune 1000 corporation executives attempted to identify and find solutions for a series of problems plaguing their operations. Take um, be PR and other strategic planning approaches were employed by various teams. A new team was created to address each problem attempting to solve these problems, including long processing and cycle times of key operational processes, causing significant delays and higher customer dissatisfaction. Management was not receiving timely information and formats they required to make effective management decisions. Customer service was known to be poor, with many internal handoffs required to handle most complaints or enquiries, of which there were many internal departmental communications were poor, causing a number of duplicate projects to be undertaken with much effort wasted. Often the same problem was analysed from different directions by different teams with multiple solutions to the same problem ultimately being submitted to executive management for resolution. Operational costs were very high, and old apartments note that the organization was hierarchical, with budgets for all expenditures, including I T. being a portion teach department for their own allocation. The organization was very slow at bringing new products to market, with approvals required at many levels. Although new product development teams were made up of personnel from a number of departments, each team member acquired both team approval and his own department's approval for suggestions made products requiring information. Systems changes were then given to the I T department for their acceptance, rejection and prioritization. A number of competitors long considered to be upstarts by this corporation who had dominated this market for years were actually surpassing this organization and product innovation, product pricing, customer satisfaction and market share growth. This organization had been addressing problems in this manner i e. One team one problem for many years and the same problems kept re occurring with different flavors. A startling fact in all of these business planning teams is that I t was rarely represented . I t was considered a support organisation to the business and rarely consulted during planning stages. Yet if a business change required an i t change, I t had right of acceptance, rejection and prioritization as they had to support all departmental clients with only a finite amount of resources in effect, I t rather than the business Grove. The company recognizing this problem, a strategic systems planning project, was undertaken by the I T department with a consulting firm to attempt to define corporate wide versus departmental initiatives that could help them regain focus and competitive advantage. The client considered the Strategic Systems Plan, or SSB, a successful project. However, most recommendations were not. Project funding could only be obtained apart mentally, whereas the SSP recommendations required enterprise wide support. Each department wanted a departmental business case before it would release funding to the I T group for the change is also, a number of these changes would create radical changes within the company, with some departments even being emanated, depart mentally focused leaders were therefore reluctant to invest. The reality of investing in new and innovative computing solutions from a nightie perspective alone is that cost justifications are very difficult to obtain and I t. By itself had a difficult time building a business case articulated in business terms. I understood that the enabling nature of these technologies, when coupled with reengineering of operational processes and organizational structures, offered the company enormous potential benefits. Yet they did not have a quantified business case to sell the required changes to business executives. The corporation was so departmental ized in the internal politics were so acute no overall corporate champion could be found, and many department leaders killed the proposed changes. Politically. I t who had paid for and built the SSP with some peripheral input from the business entities was ultimately stalemated in trying to obtain funding to move the company into new , more competitive directions. That's the end of this part of it. Now we'll talk to you about the solution in the next lecture. 3. Business Process Design - Part Two: Hello and welcome to Part two of business process design architect ING for competitive advantage. In this lecture, I will talk about the solution, which in effect is strategic systems planning integrated with business process design, where organizations are ready to embrace change and where interdepartmental politics are not an issue. It is possible that a strategic systems planning project in the form that it exists today is all that is needed. And I have completed a number of projects where this approach has been sufficient to initiate valuable migration projects. Strategic systems planning approaches may fail where corporations are either not ready to accept, change or require business cases to proceed as mentioned previously justifiable business cases for enterprise wide technology, innovation usually requires process and often organizational innovation as well. How then, doesn't corporation move ahead? Then, when a strategic systems planning approach is not enough of a catalyst? Well, here are some possible answers for you. First, organizational readiness, where the strategic systems planning practitioner does not believe the organization will be to move on the recommendations generated by strategic systems planning project due to excessive interdepartmental politics, poor interdepartmental communications, lack of corporate sponsorship or other reasons, it may be prudent to propose an organizational readiness step as part of phase one of the SSP process. Also, a framework for management decision making may need to be defined with respect to putting rules and principles in place at an enterprise wide level that would eliminate or reduce departmental resistance on strategic systems. Planning. Decision making. Senior executive sponsorship, often to the CEO level, needs to be in place to enforce departments into alignment with enterprise objectives. Principles such as those listed following need to be adopted and enforced by the organization as a whole. First, we need to develop new processes in alignment with the business vision and the court tasks of the corporation, rather than trying to fix existing processes. Next business process Re engineering will be done in partnership with business application and technology personnel to ensure the best possible results. The next principle that should be here, too. We will not place constraints on the definition of the problem nor the scope of the re engineering effort. The focus will be on complete process streams and not organizational departments. We will not allow existing corporate cultures and management attitudes to interfere with finding the best possible solutions for the organization as a whole. Next, a professional with required skill Set Willy each re engineering effort. We will also not dissipate our energies across a large number of engineering projects. We will focus on doing only the quantity of projects we feel that we can manage effectively . And lastly, we will not pull back when we encounter resistance and will not settle for just marginal improvements in process. By the way, some of the above the principles are adaptations put forward by my camera In his book Reengineering the Corporation in 1993 by HarperCollins Publishers. This is a book I very much enjoyed reading. So getting back to my comment above that BP our needs to be integrated into the SSP process . An enterprise wide level SS peace can only truly be effective when they address business needs. Business needs usually include such things as identifying process improvements, improving quality and service, the ability to be flexible and quick, and product creation and the ability to respond quickly to changing market conditions. Therefore, be PR needs become part of the fabric of the corporation, marrying with technology to define directions. The following diagram. Pictorially represents how BP our needs to be positioned in the enterprise to develop high level process means and to ensure that the application and technology development efforts are and will remain a line with business direction. So referring to this image, the SSP process needs to be a component of this overall business process. Engineering framework. Please note that it is the clear definition of enterprise wide processes that is integral to defining the scope of all new development initiatives undertaken without a clear definition of these new processes and their prioritization. Zin sequencing all new application development efforts are at risk in terms of scope, functionality and alignment to the business direction. The definition of these key processes and they're sequencing for development is a critical task for any organization trying to achieve transformational change, and the level of effort and skills required to be successful is high. Management has got to be dedicated, and the appropriate skills and resources have to be put in place for key roles. B P R teams will need to work in concert with or be part of application development and design teams, infrastructure teams, organizational change management teams and training teams to ensure that new processes air in alignment with the business that changes controlled and that operational disruptions air minimized. I'd also recommend that BP, our strategists, will continue to play a quality assurance role throughout the design, development and implementation of new processes. B P R teams working in concert with application and technology architects would be responsible for the successful delivery of new processes. Next, let's discuss maintaining alignment of processes, division and core tasks. Overtime business visions and core tasks of an organization can change as a result of many things. These could include changes in government policy and regulation, external competitive pressures, horizontal or vertical diversification of the corporation, new cost effective services offered in the marketplace, business opportunities identified, its senior management levels, business opportunities identified within the corporation and, lastly, new innovations or breakthroughs in technology. The operational process. Impacts of these changes will need to be assessed as they for our platform, and the organization would require some form of a conduit familiar with the enterprise as a whole, that is in a position to actually assess these impacts. If structured properly, the be PR strategist can be positioned for this task of maintaining alignment of process to the business vision and the corporations core tasks. And they can ensure that as time passes projects that are underway remaining alignment with these defined business directions ending this basically very often today projects take so long to complete it. By the time they are done, the corporation doesn't even want to be there. I've seen this approach can help to minimize this risk as another personal note. Technology opportunities are rising so quickly these days. But I do not believe corporations should risk defining projects that take over 18 months to complete even shorter than this is better. That's all for this lecture. Thank you for watching and bye for now. 4. Business Process Design - Concluding Lecture: Hello and welcome to this lecture, which I title business process Design architect ing for Competitive Advantage Concluding lecture. Over the course of my consulting career, I have found that there are a number of similarities in the problems facing many corporations. One reason why there is a repetitive theme to the types of problems that I've been encountering is that most large organizations that I consult to are still very hierarchical in structure. This is a popular form of organizational structure, has been prevalent for many decades and has been particularly effective in manufacturing organizations. A key reason for the wide use of this sort of structure in those types of organizations was that for many years informational systems had difficulty in supporting more flexible organisational designs. Today, however, relation all systems client server technologies, virtual computing environments, cloud computing and the Internet explosion as a whole has made it easier to share information across geographically distributed organizations. It's now easier to market the organization globally in concert with social media platforms and third party interfaces. Also, new object oriented development approaches have improved the flexibility of applications to better meet the needs of more end users and customers and not to forget. Data warehousing and data mining imaging, et I and workload technologies have all needed easier to dramatically improve internal business processes, provide better business modelling and forecasting capabilities and also reduce operating costs. So let's take a look back at these last dozen years or so, and I tell you what I've seen. I've seen a paradigm shift taking place in the way people think about corporations of the whole project and process teams they're replacing divisions. Decisions are being made at all levels of a corporation, as opposed to just that. The management layer only management structures. Air flattening managers are becoming more like hands on coaches working alongside other team members rather than monitoring and controlling from the top and also workgroup account manager structures are replacing segmented, task based structures where each employee is asked to do only a few components of the process before handing units of work off to be completed by others in the chain. Benefits organizations, air reaping through type of restructuring while they're enormous and they are eliminating a large number of inefficiencies that are inherent Ta hierarchical, structured organizations and some of these would include while I just I'm thinking about this. First customer service is improving dramatically. I no longer see customers being shunted from department to department to get answers. Now a customer's able to establish personal relationships with individual account managers who can answer all their questions and make the decisions on their behalf and provide them with all the support and comfort that they desire without being handed off. Decisions are made much more quickly, usually within the process teams, as each team is represented by personnel from different parts of the process cycle this type of fluid structure. Congrats. We reduce new product and service development times as approvals no longer have to go through multiple channels or chains in a number of departments. I've also seen that the quality of products and services air increasing as people are no longer being asked to make decisions or approved product designs or service offerings. With only a few very focused frames of reference through daily exposure to other team members, they could now make decisions based on a much broader understanding of the issues. Thus they're making their own individual expertise much more useful. No longer divisional performance objectives obtained at the expense of the total enterprise . I'm seeing that managers air no longer more concerned about achieving results in your own departments than they are in achieving corporate wide profitability and service targets. Next, these empowered employees air not much more useful to the corporation as they are now being asked to contribute their knowledge to project teams. Instead of being asked to perform only simple task, the corporation now has a much broader knowledge base upon which to improve corporate effectiveness and finally, facilities costs and direct internal marketing expenses. Air being reduced as more and more corporations or enabling staff to work from home organizations now also contract out many of their services to stay home. Entrepreneurs such as social media partnerships that air marketing their products. Independent testing interviews of their products by people in the social media world. And they are also making use of third party sales channels further to build advertising and to distribute it. The above are just a few the benefits of corporations who have gone through the pain and transformation of experienced. As I look at these corporations, I think about companies like Sony and Google and Ford in Wall Martin, IBM and Dell in General Motors just to name a few. These have all undertaken these types of transformations, and they've greatly improved their competitiveness and profitability as a result. To conclude, I just want to say that it's evident that organizations need to build ongoing process, re engineering efforts into the fabric of the organizations and that marketing an I T department, Aly and Knowledge Wise need to become equal partners in the vision and direction setting activities of a corporation and the efforts that they undertake to make improvements. Corporations ignore the power of social media and the Internet, and rapid advances in technological innovations in the marketplace in general, at their peril s today these air not just strategic competitive weapons, they are corporate survival itself, and corporations need to constantly adapt or get left behind. That's all for this lecture. Thank you for watching and bye for now. 5. Building Business Cases: building business cases air often included as an important component of a business process designed project beyond the standard results of a process design effort. Management will often want to view a business case at the end of the project prior to them , giving their approval to commence with implementation of the changes recommended. Therefore, I am including this lecture in this course to provide the student with an overview of what should be included to present a good business case. By the way, in my professional consulting, Siris, of course, is also being made available. Business case development is drilled down on to a greater level of detail. Elements that should be included when building a business case include the following. First, you need a statement of the goals and objectives of the project, followed by a statement of assumptions under which these projections air made. Next. It will be important to deliver a definition of constraints, influencing factors and critical success factors. A description of the level of risk in achieving project success is also important. Next, you wanna put into the project of definition of what is to be considered project success, then you'll need a baseline definition of existing processes and associated costs. A description of benefits quantified where possible. And this goes back to my whole concept of the purpose of a business case and informing management as to the viability of implementing that project. You'll be wanting to include a definition of alternative strategies to achieve the desired outcomes. Were more than one approach to delivering the project is identified. Then you'll need to deliver your recommended approach for completing the implementation projects that are a result of the effort and, lastly, irrational conclusion as to why the project or projects should proceed, including logical arguments and a cost benefit analysis. With respect to defining the true costs of a project. Well, there are a number of component areas that should be included first, the cost of recruitment and partner selections, staffing and consultant time and travel costs, and this quantified to day rate and overhead burdens. Speaking of that, when we talk about administration and office overhead, also be sure to include such things a space power, paper, phones, etcetera. Everything that creates the environment for the people working on the project have cost to them, and those need to be included. Then any equipment and software purchases required for the project. So make sure you include those last leaf. The project is gonna take any amount of time you might need to be, including funding sources, total funding and the time value of money in relation to that funding if it is a very big project. Lastly, if there are any assets that are gonna be depreciated or used up during the project, it would be wise to include numbers for that as well. Final comments. This lecture provides insights on how to build business cases. It is just a no overview at this point. More details on building business cases are included in one of my other courses, particularly the course called A Guide to Professional Consulting. Part for this is another series, of course, is that I am putting on the site for your learning requirements. This concludes this lecture. Hope you've received good value from it, and I look forward to sharing more information with you on future electors. Bye for now,