How to get started with enterprise digitalization?

One of the ways to make a business successful is certainly to digitize processes. If you have already decided that you want to digitize your processes, as a first step we recommend getting to know your current processes and documenting them so that they can be understood quickly and clearly by all employees.

It is common in practice that employees only know the processes that they themselves also routinely carry out. A comprehensive view of all company processes, their dependencies on other processes, people, IT systems and legislation is very rare. This is mainly because creating and maintaining an up-to-date such a digital map of a company’s processes is not an easy task. Although companies have attempted such a thing in the past, without the right tool it is very difficult to prepare such a “map” and almost impossible to keep it up to date. If such a map is plotted in the right digital tool, it is called the digital twin of the enterprise.

It is ideal to create a description of such processes according to a methodology so that it can be read by a director, a warehouse manager, an IT supplier or a business partner. Therefore, the BPMN standard, which defines a universal language for processes, is usually used for such process mapping. The BPMN standard consists of objects with a simple description. You can also imagine it as an image, containing squares, balls and arrows 😊. Of course, writing a process in this standard requires some technical knowledge but especially the knowledge of an analyst with a sense of abstraction. It should therefore be carried out by the staff most familiar with the selected process. Of course, we can also help customers in the initial documentation of processes, but the advantage is if the customer can extend and modify the mapping and documentation of processes on their own.

Recently, while visiting one of our customers, I saw a huge printed map of the main processes that he had created a few years ago. The business has big plans for digitalisation and understood that without knowing the current processes, it would not be able to design new processes quickly and well. However, it has so far only been left with a graphical drawing of them. Therefore, a modern tool that would make the whole process easier and allow the customer to make the most of the information plotted in this way would be very helpful to the customer.

Modern process integration support tools help to make working with them as simple and intuitive as possible. In addition to helping to document processes quickly and easily, such a tool can do much more. In addition to simply writing down the processes with their relationships, you can also add other important information, such as assigning the profession that executes or controls the process, adding responsibilities for processes or individual activities, or adding the equipment that is needed to execute the process. It is also possible to add information in which IT systems the processes are executed, what documents enter and exit the process. It is also possible to add information about the risks associated with the individual activities, assigning controls to them, control objectives, etc.

If you can write all this down, you will then be able to approve, revise, comment and evaluate these processes in a simple way. In addition, you can add user documentation to the processes and then publish all of this to your end-users via the web or directly on their mobile devices. In this way, your employees will be able to cope with really any situation and always according to pre-agreed rules. In addition, such a system can answer questions you may not have known to ask before.

We therefore recommend that such process mapping is carried out using modern software tools, which are typically available today in the Cloud. We offer our customers modern tools from our partner companies SAP and BOC Group. The SAP Signavio tool was only recently acquired by SAP through the acquisition of Signavio and has subsequently been successfully integrated into its product portfolio. Its main advantage is its analytical capabilities over processes directly in the SAP IS and its full integration into this environment. BOC Group’s ADONIS, ADOIT and ADOGRC tools in turn occupy the top ranks in the annual Gartner Magic Quadrant™ for Enterprise Architecture and BPM Tools. At the same time, these tools cover not only process management, but also risk management and IT architecture of the organization. So if you contact us, we will be happy to advise and select the right tool for you.

As we said at the beginning, digitizing processes is just the beginning. Once you have your current processes mapped out in such detail, it’s the perfect chance to start analyzing and looking for places to optimize and digitize them. Such a tool and especially working actively with it can then make business easier, clearer, faster and thus help companies to be even more successful ! Effective process integration can then be one of the first steps to achieve such digitisation of businesses.

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