Human Centric Process Management: The common base for digital transformation, cost savings, compliance and agility
Engage Process explains how to ensure that process remains at the heart of your management programs - and how to keep undue pressure from those processes
Most organisations are struggling with an increasing number of management programs. Where GDPR and compliance programs already ask for attention, COVID-19 urgently asked us to re-design our services. Costs savings became more adamant and digital transformation continues to push forward. These programs all put pressure on the teams who are doing the actual work. How do they keep the services going and deal with seemingly contradicting instructions?
Do management programs put pressure on our processes or are processes the basis for these programs?
A good process management program can be the common foundation for all these programs. But in order to do so, there are 5 requirements:
- People must be involved in process management;
- Processes must be discussed in sufficient detail to include all relevant exceptions;
- Process and process steps must be enriched with data for management programs;
- Ongoing review / continuous improvement must be formalized;
- IT has to be involved but not in the lead.
- People must be involved in process management
When Lean practices and process management became more popular, often processes were defined/mapped and improvements suggested by individual consultants and/or IT departments. As all World Class, Theories-of-Constraints, Lean and other process management theories stipulate, the inclusion and empowerment of the operating staff is absolutely essential in any process management program. Reasons are:
- They are the only ones who know the processes good enough, including all relevant exceptions;
- They often carry enough small improvement suggestions with them to add-up to a huge improvement;
- They can and should be the drivers for change instead of a potential barrier;
- They can reflect any new requirement with the primary services of your organisation.
- Processes must be discussed in sufficient detail to include all relevant exceptions
Process describing- and BPM-tooling are limited to a “high over” approach. They do not specify the relevant exceptions. In reality though, the number of cases needing an exception is often larger than the number of cases not needing an exception (the clean case). Omitting these exceptions creates a non-compliance situation and might lead to services and systems that do not cover all customer requests.
- Process - (steps) must be enriched with data for management programs
After discussing and mapping processes, the process steps should be enriched with relevant data, like GDPR data, risk data, IT-systems used, roles, documents used etc. This enrichment will help the operating staff to place such data in the context of the services performed. Also, linking such data to processes and process steps will allow you to run reports from the process tooling, thus instantly creating a GDPR register, risk and compliance reports or change management reports from the process tooling.
- Ongoing review / continuous improvement must be formalised
As organisations will continue to change, it is important to formalise process review meetings. After processes are discussed and new versions adopted by the staff, a review meeting and feedback-sessions should be set up.
- IT is involved but not in the lead
It is obvious that IT also plays a key role in process improvements. But taking IT or a system as a starting point doesn’t seem to be the best choice for processes that are currently human centric. Who understands these processes best? The operating staff or the IT staff? In addition, for partially automated or hybrid processes a thorough understanding of the complete process and visualization of the parts that are automated is important.
Visualization of automated process sections
What are the benefits?
Putting human centric process management at the heart of management programs will give key benefits.
- The operating staff will carry the required changes; they will be the drivers of change;
- Management programs can be implemented quicker and with significant cost saving as the common foundation will be in place already;
- Management programs will be more successful as all relevant exceptions will be included from the start;
- Reports can be generated without any extra costs and from a shared perspective instead of separate reports per program i.e. leading to standardization and fewer contradictions;
- Outside-in process improvements result in increasing customer value and higher customer satisfaction scores.
About Engage Process
Engage Process empowers the leaders and staff of local authorities and other human centric organisations, to proactively evaluate and reimagine their processes in real time and by the people who are actively working in these processes day-to-day. This requires process management tooling that is built for inclusive brainstorm sessions by staff that is not specifically trained for using such tooling. Easy, rich, intuitive. We have built our tooling specifically for this purpose.
Over 300 European councils and human centric organizations use the Engage Process platform on a daily basis, like City of Edinburgh Council and Sedgemoor District Council just to name a few. What they achieve is finding efficiency improvements, like in processes that need to be further digitized, and cost savings while improving service standards.
Ted Twaalfhoven is CEO at Engage Process.
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