A Business Process Manifesto
Insurance Experts' Forum, June 13, 2012
Roger Burlton of BPTrends, LLC, who has been working for 20 years in the business process management field, has published a series of principles and value statements around what BPM can and should mean to organizations.
Any insurance organization attempting to move BPM into a higher realm would be well-served to review Burlton's Business Process Manifesto. In the preamble to the manifesto, he observes “there is a lot of confusion regarding Business Process concepts and terminology,” and “no current standards regarding the fundamentals of Business Process.”
In addition, implementations of BPM have been hit-or-miss propositions, he observes. “Approaches to Business Process have become too complex to enable easy understanding and adoption,” he states. “Mistakes made in the implementation of Business Process strategy, architecture, analysis and design are a result of misunderstandings of Business Process concepts and practices.”
As co-author of the SOA Manifesto, published in 2009, I am aware of the need for a simple, well-stated set of principles that can help guide the industry's understanding of an important concept, along with the source of its business value.
Here are some of the points raised in the new Business Process Manifesto:
- “Working definition of Business Process: An organization's Business Processes clearly describe the work performed by all resources involved in creating outcomes of value for its customers and other stakeholders.”
- “A Business Process may be comprised of highly structured and repetitive work or be loosely structured and exhibit high variation.
- “About value creation: A Business Process creates value for customers and other stakeholders of the Business Process:
- “A Business Process should create measurable value for customers and other stakeholders by delivering outcomes that satisfy their particular needs and expectations.
-”The value created by a Business Process should be measured by one or more performance indicators.”
- “A Business Process should be guided, formally or informally, by the organization's business mission, vision, goals and performance objectives.”
-”An organization should not have more than one set of Business Processes. All process models in the organization should be integrated into a single set of Business Processes.”
-”A notation is a set of constructs used to represent and communicate a particular perspective on the Business Process model. A Notation is not a Business Process model.”
-”Individuals interacting with or implementing certain aspects of the model should be able to view a diagram in a notation that is suitable for their own purposes.”
- “A Business Process name should be clearly and consistently understood by external and internal business stakeholders.”
- “One and only one naming syntax should be used to describe all Business Processes and activities at all levels of decomposition.”
- “A Business Process name should not describe where it is performed, who or what is used to perform it or how it is performed.”
- “A Business Process starts when one or more events trigger its initiation.”
- “A Business Process ends when its intended result has been achieved or when the decision is made to terminate achievement of the intended result."
Joe McKendrick is an author, consultant, blogger and frequent INN contributor specializing in information technology.
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