So you think you have good processes?
Tom Devonald
By Tom Devonald
Blog

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From Aerospace to Wholesalers, processes underpin every company in the world. Without processes organisations would give inconsistent service to their customers and would very probably find themselves with major compliance issues.

The real issue with processes is that very few companies, if any, truly know the real processes in place within their organisations. For example, if I were to ask a number of process engineers what the Procure to Pay (P2P) process in their business looks like I would probably get a process map similar to the one below. Even those who realise the true state of their processes are probably reluctant to acknowledge it.

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In theory, this is the perfect P2P process however in reality the process followed is probably far from this ideal.

Using a tool such as Celonis Process Mining allows an organisation to identify what their real processes look like by analysing the data checkpoints in the systems, whether those processes live in SAP, Oracle, JD Edwards or industry specific systems. By logging activities based on the data from these systems and then ordering them, Celonis provides a full visual representation of the real processes in your business. So whilst the perfect P2P process may be the one above, the process flow below is the harsh truth to what most organisation’s P2P process looks like.

Whilst it is great in theory that a P2P process will only contain a handful of steps such as ‘Create PO Item’, ‘Record Goods Receipt’ and ‘Record Invoice Receipt’, the reality is that there will always be changes of price, quantity, approvals and other steps that when scaled up to hundreds of thousands of cases, appear very frequently and completely change the appearance of the process.
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It would be incredibly difficult and would take a number of months to correctly map this process manually, so being able to use Celonis and get a clear picture of your process in a matter of days is a far simpler option. Of course it is valuable knowing that your organisation has a problem with its processes, however the real value comes from being able to identify what is causing process inefficiencies and this is where Celonis really comes into its own.

Being able to drill down into the data to identify change, automation or rework rates as well as viewing case frequency and throughput for specific company codes allows organisations to develop very in-depth analyses of their processes. On top of this, even more detailed and dynamic analysis components can be custom scripted and individual KPIs can be created.

Being able to identify the process deficiencies in an organisation is vital for all companies, as by streamlining and eradicating inefficiencies companies will not only save money but offer a better service to their customers and employees.

It is however particularly key for organisations that are currently using SAP ERP who will have to make the move to S/4HANA before 2025. This is because it is widely accepted that making the move to S/4HANA is a long and complex process which is made even more complicated should the processes within ERP not be as refined as possible.

When planning a roadmap for the migration to S/4HANA, process identification and improvement should be one of the first steps. It is at this point that Celonis can really assist and it should be at the forefront of an organisation's thoughts when wanting to carry out process identification or improvement.

 

 

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Tom Devonald
By Tom Devonald

Tom is an associate consultant in the technology practice at AgilityWorks and spends a lot of time working with Celonis Process Mining in order to help organisations reveal and realise the true state of their processes. Outside of work, Tom is a keen runner and enjoys spending his time watching nearly any type of sport!

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