How do you ensure the desired result from your business process improvement and automation initiative? Of course, there are a lot of things that need to come together to ensure the expected outcome. That said, a quality and accurate process map is at the heart of any successful improvement and automation initiative.
As a process map helps you understand what works in your current process and what needs improvement, it sets a strong foundation for your improvement and automation initiative. A quality process map helps you drive your improvement and automation initiative by capturing information related to process start and end, process waste and bottlenecks, the flow of activities, team roles and responsibilities, and automation opportunities.
While a process map is a critical element for process improvement and automation, many organisations struggle to sustain the initial momentum and ensure the quality of process maps.
Why do Process Mapping Initiatives miss the mark?
We look at the top 5 factors that hamper the result of process mapping initiatives:
1. Inconsistent efforts: A major deterrent to your process mapping initiative is inconsistent and haphazard efforts across different business areas. This primarily happens due to the lack of a common methodology and toolset. Defining a common methodology for organisation-wide mapping initiatives is vital to ensuring consistent process maps. Further, identifying a right-fit toolset for process mapping ensures different business units remain on the same page and continue to map, analyse and improve. This helps in establishing a culture of continuous improvement.
2. Lack of standardised documentation: Another mistake that hampers process mapping projects is not focusing on defining common standards, rules, symbols and templates. It is essential to choose a worldwide accepted mapping notation, such as BPMN and define the right standards and level of detail to ensure consistent and accurate documentation for the organisation-wide processes. Equally important is to make these maps readily accessible through a central repository. A central repository of all process maps created using consistent symbols and notations helps process improvement initiatives and proves vital for any future system implementation.
3. Not defining the team and responsibilities: Underestimating the scope of the process mapping project and not identifying a team of required skills significantly impacts the output of the process mapping project. Make sure your team includes individuals with process mapping, analysis, improvement, implementation and change management skills. Further, their roles and responsibilities should be clearly defined to ensure project timelines.
4. Lack of Leader Buy-in: When leaders are not involved in the process mapping process and do not fully understand its value, they may view it as a burden or unnecessary distraction rather than a strategic initiative that can benefit the organisation. Without their buy-in and support, the process improvement efforts may not receive the necessary resources, attention, or commitment to be successful. For leader involvement and support, it is important to incorporate their input and feedback during the process mapping stage and keep them informed throughout the implementation phase.
5. Lack of clarity on where to start the process mapping / modeling project: Several organisations struggle to showcase the value from process mapping as they begin with processes that are not the most urgent. With a number of business processes in an organisation, choosing the ones that will deliver the highest impact to the customer or business is crucial to showcase the results of process mapping and gain buy-in for future initiatives.
Ensure Process Mapping Success
To tide over these common challenges and ensure sustained momentum, you need to have a solid plan in place before starting your current-state process mapping journey. The comprehensive plan needs to account for all the essential elements—from the right team to the right processes and implementation strategy—which, when put together, result in Process Mapping Success.
Have you factored in all the must-have elements for maximising process mapping output?
Download this Free 15-point checklist to assess if you are ready for Process Mapping / Modeling Success.
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