What does maturity mean?
Maturity is the state of a thing that has reached its “full development”.
This term applied to business processes leads us to the conclusion that “process maturity is an indicator of how close a developing business process is to being complete or capable of continuous improvement, through qualitative measures and feedback”.
Therefore, for a process to be mature, it must be complete in its usefulness, automated, reliable in information and supported by business indicators.
Why measure the maturity level of a Business Process?
Measuring the maturity of a business process is very useful when you want to adopt a culture of continuous improvement in the organization. To manage the quality of a product or service, through an adequate control of resources.
A practical case…
During the work I did in an automotive parts manufacturing company, I had the opportunity to participate in a project, in which we were able to establish the level of maturity of the business processes, with the collaboration and participation of the Top Management of the Plant.
In order to have more clarity and understanding of how to establish the level of maturity in each business process, we based ourselves on the following levels defined by the “Forrester Business Process Council Maturity Model”:
- Not understood. It is not formalized, the need is not recognized.
- Occasional Ad-hoc. Not consistent, not planned, disorganized.
- Intuitive repeatable. Not documented, occurs only when necessary.
- Defined documented. Predictable, occasionally evaluated, understood.
- Measured well managed. Formal, often automated, frequently evaluated.
- Continuously optimized and effective. Integrated, proactive, usually automated.
Given the above, we had sessions with process owners, stakeholders and Top Management. We walked through each process map, identified risks, areas of opportunity and percentage of automation for each process, to finally determine what level it was at.
We generated a list of initiatives oriented to process optimization and documented the process automation requirements. We held sessions with the Information Technology area, to whom we presented the level of maturity of the business processes and the automation requirements necessary to bring them to a better state.
This way, the Information Technology area was able to define a Project Portfolio and elaborate the necessary work plans to develop and enter into a cycle of continuous improvement of each business process of the Company.
The previous one was a way, I consider, of a suitable administration of the economic, technical and human resources of the company; since with the clarity of the result in mind, a path of evolutionary improvement of each one of the processes is defined, determining strategies of improvement in each one of them, to optimize the quality in the service .
And in the company where you work, do they know the level of maturity of their business processes? How did they determine that level?
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