The basis of repeat business for a company depends heavily on customer experience with the entity. By optimizing business processes, a company can ensure that both customer experience and by extension, bottom lines are improved. There are many methodologies to bringing about these changes, but process mining is one of the more useful tools for investigating business process optimization. Systems such as the on-premise SAP Mining Application and the cloud edition of the software (both produced by Celonis) can aid analytics through process mining to help a company determine where its inefficiencies lie.
What Is Process Mining?
Process mining constructs analytical models, allowing users to visualize business processes by mapping the existing raw data to a user-friendly display. The company generates raw data from both audit trails and logs. They aren’t affected by any pre-processing, and as a result, the insights they create are unique because the system doesn’t introduce filters to the data before the model utilizes the data. The insights that process mining offers to clients can range from high-level overviews of process variants, all the way down to granularized views of text-based reports, which can be used to track individual orders from start to finish.
Process mining also creates a framework for the introduction of robotic process automation. Automation depends heavily on the establishment of a series of rules that require minimum human intervention. The more complex the ruleset becomes, the less effective automation is. To implement automation properly, there needs to exist an established process flow together with the manual instructions that human workers at a particular station use. Companies tend to overlook the latter element when introducing automation into their system, leading to errors that need to be found and rooted out after the automation process goes live. Process mining allows for a much more detailed overview of methods and their variants and ensures that these human-based inputs are included in the final automation ruleset. If anything, process mining can be solely responsible for the success of a company’s switch towards automation.
The Business’ Role in Successful Process Mining
Out of the box, the system is relatively straightforward. SAP Process Mining by Celonis is built as an add-on to improve the existing process mining functionality included in a standard SAP install. Prebuilt applications (via the Intelligent Business Apps store for business storage) allow for connecting both non-SAP and SAP-based systems. The prebuilt applications do basic processing of data, converting it into formats the system can use and giving the client a range of presets when it comes to objectives or analyses, lowering the time needed for the software to become viable. Collaboration is also available using Cloud Teams to enable remote teamwork, helping address the inefficiencies of the company’s business operations.
For process mining a handful of best-practices already exist to ensure the success of incorporating the system into one’s company. These include:
- Deployment of the process mining system to users and business owners on-site can be the most efficient use of the software. It allows all of the stakeholders to be on the same page regarding the growth and profitability of the enterprise as a whole.
- Process mining ‘evangelists’ that carry the software and promote its use across the length and breadth of the enterprise is a necessity. Their inclusion helps fuel adoption of the process mining technique in all departments, and with the support of the company behind it, the team can push for every department to start utilizing the process mining software to generate better insights for the inefficiencies of any department.
- In robotic process automation, a company can find ways to improve the automation efficiency by benchmarking the automation ratio and comparing it to a best-case scenario. Through the comparison, the glaring inefficiencies with the automation system become apparent, and the company can set about addressing them.
Process mining provides one of the most robust frameworks for automation currently available to SAP users. Combining the built-in process mining capabilities of the SAP software with external tools can aid in locating the inefficiencies within a company’s operations and addressing how to improve them.