People aspects, an undervaluedarea in the procedures ofbusiness process management
People aspects, an undervalued area in theprocedures of business process managementThe conference paper byJuhani AnttilaAcademician, M.Sc. (ElectricalEngineering)International Academy for QualityAalto University, Department ofIndustrial Engineering andManagementjuhani.firstname.lastname@example.orgKari JussilaM.Sc. (Physical Electronics),M.Sc. (Economics)Aalto University, Department ofIndustrial Engineering andManagementkari.email@example.comThese pages are licensedunder the Creative Commons 3.0 Licensehttp://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0(Mention the origin)
Main parts of the presentation:1. People’s role in business processes; The historical development inthe course of time2. Organization-wide management of business processes and peopleperformance3. Process-structure dichotomy and a management dilemma4. Human work in business processes5. People aspects in process performance measurements, evaluations,and improvements6. Profound knowledge-based development7. ConclusionsPeople aspects, an undervalued area in theprocedures of business process management
An age-old topic: People aspects in businessprocessesThe oldest business processes were the work of farmers and craftsmen.Also the ancient collaborative group work was carried out as human processes.- An example: An ancient bronze casting process in about 1500 B.C.
People in business processes• Work of farmers and craftsmen, and the ancient collaborative group work• Taylorism, Fordism and the scientific management mechanized the human work• A counter-reaction to pay attention to human factors, from theory X to Theory Y and Z• The emergence of HRM discipline and applied as organizations’ HR function• Today’s business management doctrines implicitly recognize people aspects andbusiness processes but not handle them explicitly as integrated topics• Many IT solutions make the work of people in processes more complex and difficultrather than simplified their work• Human processes forced to operate according to formal flow diagrams, and evensupported by computerized management systems. I this a new Taylorism?• Global business networking and ecosystems emphasize human aspects due to therequirement of more flexibility, tacit knowledge, and creativity of empowered people• Interactive IT, e.g. social media and cloud services, reinforce individual and non-routine work against orthodoxies of tightly scripted business processes• Organizations and society require inclusive growth for enhancing collaborativecooperation of people
Managing business processes and peopleaspects at four levels in an organizationA PDC
Corporate-wide normative process managementLeadership language and common practices:Establishing and maintaining the fundamental and normative process concepts,principles, visions, and general process management methodology, and peoplepolicy(“aiming at corporate culture for process approach”)Shared meanings, and learning and communication:Achieving the same understanding and awareness on the organizationalbusiness process approach, and people roles in business process managementamong the leaders and workers
Strategic vs. operational process managementOperational daily process management is fundamentally divergent fromstrategic process management but they must be consistent with eachother in an organization:Strategic management relates to thewhole business (all processes as abusiness system) and to the majorprocess transformations in order toenhance business performance.Strategic target: Top-down driveResponsible persons: Businessleaders of the corporation andbusiness units; experts’ help may beusedOperational management relates to theeveryday operations carried out by theindividual processes in order to fulfillcurrent needs and expectations of theorganization’s stakeholders.Operational promise: Bottom-up reportingResponsible person: The process ownerwith the support of the relevant businessleader
The responsible business leader of theorganization’s strategic process managementBusiness leaders are generalistsand strongly acting individualswith firm personal awarenessand strong organizationalpositions.They do not necessarilycommunicate with experts whoare specialists and deeplyknowing individuals with lowposition-based authority.Business leaders know the rightthings, and experts know thebest means to do things right.
Process owner and unit business leaderfor the operational process managementTasks of the process owner:• Updating and maintaining the process plan• Managing interfaces with other processes• Promoting learning and cooperation• Acquiring tools and other means andensuring their effective use• Maintaining relationship with the customers• Controlling process performance andrectifying problems• Managing performance improvement• Acquiring resources from the organization oroutside• Communicating with the business leadersand customers on the needs, performanceand improvement of the process• Initiating recognition and rewards to theprocess people• Planning and controlling process budgetTasks of the unit business leader:• Bearing accountability of the wholebusiness and the whole system ofbusiness processes• Monitoring the operation andperformance of the process• Supporting processes, e.g. relatingto the resources and improvement ofthe process performance• Acting as superior of the processowner, e.g. conductingperformance evaluationA challenging question:How to manage withthe conflicts of interest?
Process-structure dichotomy in human work andthe consequent process management dilemmaA process means productive doing or activities for a certain purpose by livingbeings, or by mechanical or automatic means with certain existing structures.Trade-off decisions:• Freedom / Control• Awareness / Instructions• People / Systems• Proactive / Reactiveapproaches• Variety / Discipline
Process variety and the management ofbusiness processesProcess variety is closely related to human work in business processes.The law of “Requisite variety”(Ashby) requires that themanagement must be higherthan the variety of the systemor process being managed.
Work, a personal and collaborative humanprocessThinking, imagining, seeing, listening, hearing, and feeling are natural humanprocesses, and they are always present at business processes.- All process workers and business leaders are factually knowledge workers.Their work creates value to the work or business partners through makinginterpretations, judgments, and decisions based on various data and information.- Tacit knowledge is more significant than the explicit knowledge.A challenging work concept for business process management:“An activity that produces something value for other people” (O’Toole)“Human work include the following elements: (1) creativity (joy of thinking), (2)physical activity (joy of physical work), (3) sociality ( joy of sharing pleasure andpain with colleagues)” (Nishibori)Well-being and inclusive growth are big challenges to organizations’ businessprocesses as well as in the processes of the societies.
A human being in a business processA person is directly involved in business process activities through his/herwhole physical (somatic), mental, and spiritual nature, and related capabilitiesand capacity.
A Win-Win human interaction in work orcustomer connection of business processesRational, non-rational (emotional), and irrational human-to-human interactionsbetween work partners and customers are essential for creating mutually net value.
People performance measurements andevaluations in business processesWorkforce and leader performance measurements:Focus: Work environment and people engagement, segmented according to thediversity of people addressing key individuals, groups, segments, and processeswith current levels and trendsMeasures and indicators: People capability and capacity, working climate,including health, safety, security and work services and benefits, peopleengagement and satisfaction, and workforce and leader development- Human activities related measurements are difficult andsensitive. The performance is often hidden. or not at all possibleto reach with direct and superficial measurements.Strategic and operational process performance evaluations:- Strategic business self-assessment models: (a) Evaluations based onmaturity models and (b) evaluations based on performance excellencemodels- Operational process evaluations and auditing
People performance improvement anddevelopment in business processes“HR integration” process provides professional HR solutions to organization’s allbusiness processes. HR experts of the HRM department are the key persons inthe process and customers in organization’s all other business processes.
Heuristic Vee approach for business processdevelopment based on profound knowledgeUsing heuristic Vee methodology for analyzing and synthesizing a processdevelopment initiative and establishment from the viewpoint of peopleperformance in the business processes.
ConclusionsPeoples aspects should be seen in organizations particularly integrated with thebusiness processes management:- Performance of people squarely becomes actualized only in the operationalbusiness processes, and concequently- Quality of stakeholders and the business results will be achieved.It is necessary that both peoples aspects and business processes are consistentlyconsidered within- Corporate-wide normative scope- Strategic business focus of the organizational business units- Operational activities of the business processes- Individual human activity and recognitionAll this requires profound knowledge and the sound theoretical and conceptualbasis, and an integrated multidisciplinary managerial approach.