Understand your Decision Making Unit to align process and experience objectives
Congratulations! You’ve volunteered (or you’ve been volunteered) to lead a journey to process analytics initiative in your company, bringing the worlds of process and experience together. Long are the days in which your company has solely relied on information from operational systems to make decisions. By launching questionnaires, collecting feedback, and gathering experience data, you now get insight into critical elements to your success – how your customers, employees, or suppliers perceive working with you.
With this blog post, we are continuing with our blog series 10 steps for successful journey to process analytics.
The next step is to start deciding priorities: Which challenges will you focus on?
The role of the Decision Making Unit in setting objectives.
Objective setting and ownership are paramount. And it’s not just the high-level business objectives but also more granular goals that need to be set out: Which processes, which journeys, what is our end objective?
Now comes the hard part. Organizations are sometimes not well designed to set objectives and embrace innovation to change “business as usual”, so it’s crucial to understand how decisions are made and how initiatives are funded to maintain the momentum.
In our previous blog post, we went go through the different organizational aspects that need to be in place to ensure a successful journey to process analytics initiative. Several roles are key in a Decision Making Unit (DMU) in a company:
As an initiative like this involves two different parts of the organization (process and experience), initiators may be on one side or the other. Still, goals and objectives should be set at the same table by crucial roles on both sides.
Providing sponsors and deciders with the right information.
The deciders, typically senior leaders and executives, often say “No” to innovation because they are conditioned to avoid risk. But the “No” usually means:
- They don’t know enough about the goals and objectives of the proposed change.
- They don’t know the strategic alignment of the new ideas.
- They don’t know if the ideas are needed (are they desirable to customers or employees?).
- They don’t know how the idea will work (is it feasible?).
- They don’t know if there is value in the idea (is it viable and will there be worthwhile business results associated with the change?).
Coming up with ideas is often the easy part. Coming up with relevant and impactful ideas is a bit more challenging. So, how do we prioritize and select the best ideas to take forward?
We suggest reflecting and investigating several aspects ahead:
- Which processes or process steps are more inefficient today?
- Which journeys or journey steps have the lowest experience or satisfaction scores?
- How is this already affecting your business today? How will it impact in the long run?
- Which ideas or initiatives may accelerate your time to insight?
- Which changes are more complex to execute or may require more resources?
- How many stakeholders are involved, and what’s needed to gain buy-in?
- How do the ideas align with other short-term and long-term initiatives?
- And critically, team passion and ownership.
Starting with confidence – with an iterative approach.
True innovators take the guesswork out of having their initiatives sponsored and prioritized with a clear objective setting and an iterative approach:
- First, by agreeing and developing a shared understanding of the challenge: For instance, you have identified low CSAT scores in one of your company departments.
- Then, identifying what will be driving measurable future outcomes. If your analysis highlights potential root causes on the process side (such as a correlation of low CSAT scores with high delivery cycle times for specific items you sell), start projecting potential outcomes of what needs to change to tackle the challenge.
- Finally, start with small changes in a controlled approach. Redesigning a process slightly or introducing an initial change can be the first step.
Evaluating if process changes have any effect on the customer, measuring, assessing the outcome, and iterating again will give you the confidence you need rather than implementing big changes in a major process overhaul. Profound process changes with no controlled mechanism to test ahead may lead to an undesired impact on the experience side or have a significant, unforeseen financial impact you did not consider.
The importance of testing
Sponsors cannot rely on guesswork and need a predictable and sustainable approach to this initiative. Testing instills confidence and reduces risk in making decisions, providing the insights necessary to decide what to do next in an informed way.
You´ll need a way to develop proof and mitigate the risk of change to the organization with a documented testing approach. This must involve having a system to measure quantitative progress over time, with results being shared across the organization. Data-driven decisions can then be made to gauge whether the initiative delivered the desired results, triggered process or journey changes, or rethink the objectives and scope of the initiative.
In summary, in this blog post, we have seen the different aspects that you need to have in place to set your objectives right for a successful journey to process analytics project:
- Consider your Decision Making Unit early on in the process
- Provide sponsors with the right information to prioritize
- Starting with confidence – with an iterative approach
- The importance of testing
Our next blog post will cover journey modeling for journey to process analytics. Stay tuned!
- Join the Early Adopter Care program (EAC) and become one of our first customers to enjoy the full journey to process analytics capabilities.
- Learn more about journey to process analytics by watching the recordings of our recent webinar series.
- Check the SAP Signavio topic page.