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Best Practices

How to Get Your Process Mining Initiative Off the Ground

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If a picture is worth a thousand words, then a process visualization is worth a million. Visualizing complex processes as floating dots on a screen is a nice teaser for your colleagues, but only worth that million if made actionable. The visualization of a complicated process garners Attention and Interest. However, a serious Business Process Improvement (BPI) initiative must move beyond Attention and Interest into Action to show results. This requires finding the right people and applying the right use case.

Find the Right People

Once you’ve worked past the initial challenge of overcoming Process Mining skepticism in your organization it’s time to move Interest into Action. Process Mining software is the automated analysis of business processes that uses digital footprints to identify specific ways to improve business performance and eliminate inefficiency and risk from operations. That’s the technical part; it’s half of the Process Mining pie. People are the other more volatile half which prove to be critical in moving Interest into Action.

Guide to your first Process Mining project

Process Mining champions are the employees who will take the pretty plotted dots and run with it. They are the teams and individuals placed at various levels of your organization that will get your Process Mining initiative off the ground. First, you must find these champions through a series of Push and Pull mechanisms. Push to identify c-suite players and essential IT gatekeepers who will give the project the right level of urgency, importance, and access. Pre-existing interest for process improvement may be present in this group without the need to Push, however, a Push mechanism must be utilized because their authority is irreplaceable. Accountability must be rooted at the top.

Authority and long-term accountability are critical elements which can move a process improvement strategy into Action. Once established through the Push mechanism described above, fill out that team with employees who are passionate about the topic. These are your subject-matter experts who will master the Process Mining tool, structure a framework of day to day execution and ultimately become your go-to Action team. These Process Mining champions give the project visibility across the entire company because they will be living and breathing process improvement daily.

With your core team identified it’s time for empowerment and change management. If your company is serious about Business Process Improvement (BPI), then change management will be no new concept to your organization and its structure. You’ve managed change before and don’t shy away from the impact a digital transformation can have. Process Mining is no exception as it’s often linked to a broader shift in the way business optimization, revenue generation, expense reduction and customer experience is approached.

Define a Use Case Fit

Regardless of the industry, you work in or the size of your company, all businesses share an obvious common goal — the desire to succeed and be a top performer. From startups to enterprises, manufacturing to retail, business process optimization is a path towards success. Whether that path focuses on reducing operational costs, shortening customer feedback time, taking advantage of new revenue streams, or optimizing old ones, Process Mining reveals an otherwise invisible map towards process improvement. However, the case must fit.

Our team of Process Mining experts at Minit are here to help identify the right use cases that will match the Process Mining goals specific to your company. Here are two examples of typical use cases that fit the Process Mining bill to a T — one focused on cost reduction, the other on profit maximization.

Use Case #1: Cost Reduction (Procure to Pay Process)

A P2P process has many vulnerabilities prime for optimization and risk reduction. Maximize the value of your procure to pay process by stopping leakage, identifying and fixing process weaknesses and breaking through performance barriers. By examining the P2P cycle with Process Mining software you will be able to determine the percentage of invoices that don’t pass immediately on to the purchase-to-pay system. Why is a manual intervention needed? Why is the cycle broken or delayed? Process Mining will answer these questions.

Procure-to-Pay process is an ideal use case that is easily placed within the context of Process Mining. An ERP or invoicing records the exact steps of this cycle with each activity leaving a digital timestamped footprint behind. The challenge, however, is the lack of a cohesive ‘as-is’ reality. Footprints may be left across multiple systems making the P2P cycle hard to piece together. Additionally, employees (and to some extent systems) will focus to a fault on anomalies and process norms. Process Mining delivers an objective view void of human interference. A few benefits of applying Process Mining to the procure to pay process use case include:

  • Reduce order cycle time
  • Optimize on-time payment
  • Reduce manual intervention
  • Reduce cost-per invoice
  • Eliminate maverick buying
  • Capture unused discount potential

Use Case #2: Profit Maximization (Mortgage to Loan Process)

Buying a home is a lot about emotions, which in turn is about the experience. Customer experience and customer satisfaction are becoming increasingly critical factors to the bottom line for banks and financial institutions, both of which used to be perceived in an exclusively transactional manner. Customer satisfaction drives market share for mortgage lenders. Gain more revenues through a sharp competitive edge and outstanding customer satisfaction.

According to “The Fight for the Customer: McKinsey Global Banking Annual Review 2015”, Banks could lose 20% of their mortgage profits by 2025. The additional prediction that 70% of all customer transactions will occur outside of the branch by 2020 makes the granular impact of each process step critical. People (on the business side of lending) are being removed from the customer experience, putting more weight on process perfection. Process standardization can handle this weight by highlighting process inefficiencies, performance gaps, and pricing anomalies. Through process improvement in the mortgage to loan cycle, lenders can create a customer experience that goes increasingly beyond a handshake.

Get Started Today

Process Mining and process improvement require strategic thinking. Moving your organization from Interest to Action will help get your Process Mining initiative off the ground and Minit can help. Let us help you stay competitive, find new revenues, reduce costs or improve customer satisfaction with better processes. We support businesses around the world in uncovering their true potential in the smallest of places. When it comes to Process Mining the devil, and the potential, are in the details. Get in touch withour team to learn more about getting your Process Mining initiative started.

Michal Rosik

03. 09. 2018