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Process Consulting

1. Process Analysis

Tools and technologies are worthless if they are not used optimally. Therefore, consulting and implementation are integral parts of our work, and of our implementation partners.

In process analysis, we look at existing work processes from an external point of view to identify, describe and weight inefficiencies:

  • Administration and production processes
  • Local and global
  • Internal and overarching
  • Human and technical processes

Besides the theoretical knowledge of scientific articles, the practical experience of already implemented solutions on which one can build is important.

In all processes, the commercial aspects are usually implicitly considered, such as time management, Internal Cost Accounting etc., to allow clear financial reports at the process and product level.

The analysis of the existing processes and the possibilities for improvement are therefore extremely important because all the subsequent steps build on this analysis. Correct analysis is required to assure correct conclusions in order that correct decisions are taken for change (or omission). The applied methods include:

  • Interviews
  • Observation
  • Data collection
  • Document Review

If possible, this happens with the customer so they are in position, even after a successful implementation, to constantly analyze their own processes.

The result of the analysis is a comprehensible and verifiable document, which reveals problems and opportunities, suggesting specific, appropriate solutions and improvements. On this basis, the customer can make further decisions.

2. Workflow Design

You should also read the Introduction to Workflows.

Next, a specific solution will be defined dependent on recommendations in the process analysis. It is determined exactly which changes to the current process must be implemented and how well they are supported by software. The improvement of business processes happens through:

  • Formalization (Description),
  • Standardization (Unification),
  • Optimization (Structure Change) and
  • Automation (Workflow Management).

The specification, as part of the requirements document, in which the following are defined based on use cases:

  • Workflows
  • Rules and dependencies
  • Forms and templates
  • Functions
  • Interfaces
  • Times and deadlines
  • Rights and roles
  • Reports
  • Documentation etc.

ensures the success of the implementation phase.

The design is not an abstract non-reusable process diagram that ends up in a desk drawer as documentation, rather it is a practical specification that can be utilized directly in the implementation without any change.

In this case, a number of things are important:

  1. A Step by step process
    so as not to overextend the organization (no 'big bang'), but it is not a 1:1 replica of the old manual process
  2. Early involvement of users
    with simple tools so that the results are supported and in the end are accepted
  3. Inclusion of IT-people
    so that the integrations are technically feasible
  4. Inclusion of a process manager
    who has a general overview
  5. Assertive project management
    and clear statements from management so that everybody is pulling together.

3. Process Maintenance

The maintenance of processes and workflow also has to be taken into consideration, because these change more often than might be assumed and from the outset, one should place emphasis on flexibility and adaptability in the design.

However, not only modification but also continuous optimization is important in order to keep business processes systematically competitive since the world is constantly changing. In ISO9000, for example, a continuous improvement process (CIP) is required.

Only when a company regularly maintains its own processes (with or without external assistance) will it remain effective and efficient.

Internal cost accounting is a form of cost accounting, in which internal costs are assigned based on evaluated values of cost rates. The calculated costs arise as a product of amount of activities and cost rate. The calculated costs are deducted from the outgoing cost center and added to the receiving cost center.
ISO9000 is a series of standards published by the ISO describing rules for the Quality Assurance of products and services.