Business processes are:
simply a set of activities that transform a set of inputs into aset of outputs (goods or services) for another person or process using people and tools.We all do them, and at one time or another play the role of customer or supplier.
So why business process improvement?
Improving business processes is paramount for businesses to stay competitive in today'smarketplace. Over the last 10 to 15 years companies have been forced to improve their business processes because we, as customers, are demanding better and better productsand services. And if we do not receive what we want from one supplier, we have manyothers to choose from (hence the competitive issue for businesses). Many companies began business process improvement with a continuous improvement model. This modelattempts to understand and measure the current process, and make performanceimprovements accordingly.
Definition of BPR.Corporate Reengineering
The most common definition used in the private sector comes from the book entitled,Reengineering the Corporation, a Manifesto for Business Revolution, by MIT professorsMichael Hammer and James Champy. Hammer and Champy defined business processreengineering as:The fundamental rethinking and radical redesign of business processes to bring aboutdramatic improvements in critical, contemporary measures of performance, such as cost,quality, service, and speed. (Reengineering the Corporation, Hammer and Champy, 1993)The major emphasis of this approach is the fact that an organization can realize dramaticimprovements in performance through radical redesign of its processes. This is in contrastto the notion of streamlining processes in order to achieve a measured level of performance.Another aspect to the Hammer/Champy definition is the notion of breakthroughs. Thisapproach to reengineering assumes the existing process is not sound and therefore needsto be replaced. A properly reengineered process will provide quantum leaps in performance, achieving breakthroughs in providing value to the customer.Even though these definitions focus on different strategies of implementing change, thecommon element is that the change occurs across the whole process.THE BUSINESS PROCESS REENGINEERING (BPR) VISION