5.0 Process Knowledge Management – Enabling the Right Transparency

Information about process knowledge may range from simple Power Point visuals and SharePoint folders to more sophisticated management of information models using software from vendors such as Signavio or Software AG (ARIS).

Too often these repositories are created and managed by the company’s business process experts who design and store thousands of models which are incomprehensible and inaccessible to the people who need to use them. The content, format and governance are driven by the process management experts and not by the expected outcomes. The intent is good but the process engineers behind the models frequently fail to recognize that information models are only as good as the outcomes that they trigger.

We look at business modelling from a different perspective. We start from the usage-scenario as the first of 5 critical aspects of an effective process repository leverage. These 5 areas are shown in Figure 5 below and explained in more detail in the book “Value-Driven Business Process Management” (Franz, Kirchmer, 2012).

Figure 5: BPM-D Repository Success Model

In the book we describe in much more detail why all of these aspects are important in creating a repository that can be integrated into normal business practice and thus a recognized and accessible reference point for the standardized business processes. While all five of these areas are important, the most critical, in the context of standardization and harmonization, is “Usage-Scenarios”. How do normal business users engage in and consume the process information in a way that integrates with their normal daily operations, executing a “standard process”. By understanding and properly addressing this factor, the level of people engagement in any business change is significantly enhanced. People have to understand how to apply those models to implement a standard and then harmonize their individual work processes in regards of the defined standard.

We have already discussed ensuring that process management does not take place in isolated silos hidden within organizations. Once an organization has created a process repository which is outcome-driven, the next step is to ensure these documents are easily available to the people who need them. Creating a usage-scenario based access of the procedural information (as described above) is one such way of achieving this objective.

 

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