Cooking is a Business Process Too!

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I love to cook. There is nothing more rewarding than having family and friends around your table enjoying a home cooked meal.

But of course it is a process. First of all you have to decide what to make, so you scour all your recipe books and make decisions based on who your guests are and the time of year. In winter comfort foods, in summer light Italian style or BBQ. And once you have decided what to make the next step is of course to go shopping.

I love trying new recipes so often this step can be challenging, I can't just go to my usual store as I may need more unusual ingredients, plus I don't know the other store as well so this process takes a little longer than usual.

Once I've bought my ingredients I need wine to enjoy with the meal so a visit to another specialist store is in order.

The shopping is unpacked and put away and I am ready for the next step, preparation. I need to decide what to make first. I usually start with the most complicated dish and then start preparing everything else. A couple of pleasant hours pass and I am beavering away listening to my favorite music, a bit of Queen, a bit of Springsteen. The preparation is completed and apart from the actual cooking the food is ready.

The only thing left to do is lay the table nicely and then wait for my guests to arrive. I have completed the process.

You may wonder where I am going with this and how it relates to business. Yesterday one of my customers said to me that the hardest part of working with business process management is firstly figuring out what the process is and then secondly figuring out where to get the disparate pieces of information from the internal systems to use to create the automated process.

So how does that relate to my cooking:

  • Well the first step was deciding what to cook or in business what process you wish to automate.

  • The next step with cooking was buying the ingredients and having to go to different stores for different items, many businesses have disparate systems, Enterprise Resource Planning, Customer Relationship Management, Marketing and Email Automation systems, Websites and so on, and in many cases all of these disparate systems need to be connected together to completely automate your business process so you have to go to more than one place to get the information to build the process.

  • The third cooking step was the preparation, for business process management that would be using the tools to build the process which you have defined in the earlier steps, just like in cooking using the ingredients to create the meal.

  • The final cooking step is sitting back, glass of wine in hand waiting for your guests to arrive, and with an automated business process when your task is built and tested and put into production you can forget about what is happening in the background as the automated process will be doing the heavy lifting for you and maybe you can have a virtual glass of wine whilst it processes!

The tools are available to fix the problem. Having the tools and figuring our how to define the solution are not always as tangible. Do you know what process you want to automate? Do you know how to define that process? Do you know once you have defined your process how to find the information in your systems? Do you know what you want to automate?

Take a look at our video introductory webinar and fire your imagination. We have the tools. Do you have the manual repetitive processes that need automating?