How to model an end to end process
Driven by digitization, process management experiences a renaissance. To understand distinctive business processes in their entirety, companies must describe them cross-departmental in an end-to-end perspective.
Structuring of horizontal and vertical contents in a process model
The following depiction shows exemplary end-to-end processes that can serve as a starting point for developments. This may seem trivial at first. The real challenge arises, when singular end-to-end process are modeled on a detailed level. The BPM architect then must define, how to separate the areas from each other.
This concerns the horizontal separation, how to delineate end-to-end processes, as well as the vertical detailing. At this, the horizontal granularity is focused on the content-related separation of process areas and the vertical granularity on the level of detail of each content area.
To make sure for shared modeling projects that the entire model is built consistently, unambiguous criteria must be defined before the start of process modeling. It is important that the criteria for the separation of models allow a secure and unmistakable distinction, but that the effort for distinction at the same time stays reasonable. Initial point is the horizontal segmentation. Thus, in a modeling project, the central end-to-end processes must be identified at the beginning.
Identification of contents of an end-to-end model
Based on experiences from preceding modeling projects, it is possible to define benchmarks for the end-to-end structuring of a process model. The following figure shows a common and well-balanced process framework.
On the x-axis, the recommended benchmarks for executing control flow objects are defined. An important aspect is that an extensive end-to-end modeling at first shall be realized by raising the quantity of executing control flow objects rather than by increasing the modeling depth.
On the y-axis, the detailing level of a model is depicted. Each vertical detailing step must hold a consistent instance granularity. Contents shall feature a comparable instance behavior to all other contents of the same detailing level. During the modeling, process modelers start with the depiction of central end-to-end processes of a company by means of an overview.
Benchmarks and Volume
As benchmark for end-to-end processes that need to be defined, a quantity of six to twelve processes is feasible. Subsequently, the end-to-end processes that are depicted in the overview are detailed. For example, the subordinate main processes shall be intersected into five to six end-to-end processes. Process modelers need to make sure that the instance granularity of all detailed processes is similar. The subsequent detailing level must be modeled analogously.
The depicted details form the functional overview of end-to-end processes and thus the base for a further description. They deliver an important contribution for the conception and execution of digitization ventures, orientation points for reorganizations, structuring guidance for risk management and a real process-oriented leverage point for the introduction of process mining and process monitoring.
An exact definition of subprocesses can be conducted subsequently with detailed workflow descriptions. Here, the focus lies on documenting the activities of a process down until they reached an economically unreasonably decomposable activity. The specification of diagram and object quantities are oriented on an average modeling project and apply to middle-sized companies as well as large corporations. For the latter, they refer to corporate departments.
Note: This article has been published as a specialist article on Computerwoche.de.