21.10.2020

Well-tailored business processes – with clear structures for continuous improvement

A structured and well thought-out process management enables informed decisions, transparent communication and lays the foundation for continuous improvement. RACI is an established method that has successfully been put in practice many times.

The corona crisis triggers in many places what would have been necessary even without lockdown, home office and tense markets.  The fields of activity are quickly identified: securing liquidity, optimising cost structures, adjusting strategy, driving digitalisation and perhaps even reducing the workforce – making the company leaner, more resilient and fit for the future.

Often underestimated in this context is a good organisation of business processes. They often lack transparency, so that decisions cannot be made well informed or resources cannot be used effectively. Anyone who has ever had the dubious pleasure of working in a matrix organisation knows how much time and information is lost when a common view of the matter´s prioritisation must first be worked out horizontally and vertically. If or when something meaningful for the organisation or an exciting product for the market will finally emerge is far from certain.

How can something like this be managed regardless of the size of the company?

RACI increases understanding of roles and responsibilities and creates more transparency.

Axel Kellermann

Business Process Management (BPM) deals with the identification, design, documentation, implementation, control and optimisation of business processes. Holistic approaches to business process management address in particular organisational aspects, such as strategic orientation, culture or the integration and management of process participants.

The more structured and comprehensive business processes are analysed, defined and coordinated, the easier it is for companies and decision-makers to get activities off the ground quickly and in an informed manner.

The central and decisive questions across all industries are: “Who does what, when, how and with what? This exactly must be captured in a structured and presented in a recognisable way. However, this is not an organisational assignment – a new organisation chart – but a process-related overview of the respective stakeholders. We prefer to use the RACI method in transformation projects. This method represents the responsibilities and functions of process participants within an organisation in a very clear and structured way.

This approach is essentially simple, but very versatile and easily adaptable to a wide range of tasks. It serves to define the levels of participation and above all to visualise the responsibilities within a business process: Responsible, Accountable, Consulted, Informed. Thus everything necessary is distributed: R designates the doer who drives the matter forward. A is the decision-maker and the controlling authority, or, if necessary, the showstopper or the door opener to the top. C provides the necessary know-how and can be consulted and I must know what is going on without intervening. Depending on the task, one person can have several roles, but a role can also be filled by several individuals.

The added value of RACI is obvious: the understanding of roles and responsibilities increases. Transparency is created. This clearly reveals brake blocks and content barriers within an organisation. This creates the basis for further optimisation. Consistent use of the RACI method, for example, prevents the ineffective and inefficient coordination rounds in matrix organisations described above.

And: only a process-oriented structure is suitable for defining the appropriate technical systems and thus answering the question: which processes can be digitally supported or even completely digitised?

It is essential to follow the sequence. If business processes are adapted to technical feasibility, it is like wagging the dog.

Foto: Alexander Mauer
Contact
proINject – Interim Network
Change is a positive thing! We stand for successful transformations through forward-thinking process design and organisational development. We foster open, honest and well-balanced communication with all stakeholders.
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