Process Mining Can Save Your Business: From Transformation to RPA and CJM

Written by Tecwyn Hill | 6 min read
Published on: July 10th 2019 - Last modified: June 10th, 2021
process mining can save your business

A lack of information about existing processes kills 70% of large transformation projects and ~50% of RPA projects. Startling statistics! Driving this failure rate is the disconnect of understanding about relevant processes, and a disjoint in the discovery, visualization, and analysis of existing data. In other words, you’re digging in the wrong place… Narrow your search with process mining, the business equivalent of radar. The technology penetrates processes to pinpoint inefficiencies, root causes, and variants to reveal company value, so you stop the cycle of business failure.

The power to know

Process mining can save your business

If we consider the figures again, from McKinsey and Ernst & Young (EY) respectively, the digitalization of products and services is forcing companies of all shapes and sizes, and in all industries, to dramatically reconsider their existing business models and the processes they implement. Because all activities are different, process mining uses the unique data—your company’s business fingerprint—to automatically piece together a digital representation of all your existing business processes.

This digital DNA enables us to visualize exactly how your processes are operating (both the conventional path and variable executions) all the way down to the individual process instances. In other words, your business radar is not only pinging processes which lie under the surface; it is revealing their hidden value, providing instant understanding of complex processes in minutes rather than days.

Then, with standardized and configurable notifications and KPIs, you can further understand the immediate impact of any process change made—meaning that failure rates decrease and company confidence is improved. And that’s not all: new employees to the C-Suite can better explain, validate/visualize, and ensure that the right process change is secure and that improvement has the intended impact, every time.

The power of process

In business, we all answer to somebody, and it is critical to connect problems to real solutions. The everyday functions of companies—the processes upon which they are built—is the connection to business tech, from “process” mining to robotic “process” automation. Without process understanding, the tech is redundant because we have no idea how work has flowed in an existing application.

Discover, visualize and analyze

Process mining: Your point of difference

In addition to the DVA of process mining—discover, visualize, analyze—is the power to monitor real-time process execution automatically from your existing data. This simple point and click assessment can provide an instant understanding of complex processes. Within transformation projects, which by their very nature require the profound transformation of business and organizational activities, processes, competencies, and models, process mining provides the visual map to facilitate immediate action.

This self-sustaining approach across an entire organization is what leads to genuinely sustainable outcomes, and builds a process culture within an organization. By taking this holistic approach, digital transformation and excellence professionals will find it easier to leverage processes, justify their projects and programs, and address behavioral change challenges.

This includes the facilitation of transformative digital technology integration, operational agility & flexibility, leadership & culture, and workforce enablement.

3 ways process mining can save your business in a transformation project:

  1. You require 100% operational transparency: To chart all your transactions requires complete process transparency. This capability allows the direct comparison of actual operations to the ways that processes were designed to occur. This conformance checking can automatically identify the highest priority issues and tasks, and highlight root causes, so we can take immediate action.
  2. You must reduce costs and increase efficiency: Signavio research shows that almost 60% of companies incurred payment charges from suppliers due to process inefficiencies. Process mining can help your business reduce costs because it finds vulnerabilities and deviations, whilst highlighting what is slowing you down, including the bottlenecks and inefficiencies hammering revenue. Process mining beefs up operational health via process improvements and pre-emptive strategies.
  3. You must optimize the buying and selling cycle: Is shipping taking too long? Which of your suppliers supports you least? Who is outperforming whom? Process mining is your one-click trick to finding these answers and identifying which units are performing best and which are wasting time and money.

Process mining and robotic process automation

Process mining can save your business

Robotic process automation (RPA) provides a virtual workforce to automatize manual, repetitive and error-prone tasks. However, successful process automation requires exact knowledge about the intended (and potential) benefits, effective training of the robots, and continuous monitoring of their performance. With this, process mining supports organizations throughout the lifecycle of RPA initiatives by monitoring and benchmarking robots to ensure sustainable benefits.

The beneficial fusion of both technologies

These insights are especially valuable for process miners and managers with a particular interest in process automation. To further upgrade the impact of robot-led automation, there is also a need for a solid understanding of legacy systems, and an overview of automation opportunities. Process mining tools provide critical insights throughout the entire RPA journey, from defining the strategy to continuous improvement and innovation.

3 ways process mining can save your business in a RPA lifecycle project:

  1. You require process overviews, based on specific criteria: To provide a complete overview of end-to-end processes, involves the identification of high ROI processes suitable for RPA implementation. This, in turn, helps determine the best-case process flow/path, enabling you to spot redundant processes, which you may not be aware of, before automating.
  2. You are unsure how best to optimize human-digital worker cycles: By mining the optimal process flow/path, we can better discover inefficient human-robot hand-off; providing quantifiable data on the financial impact of any digital worker or process. This way, we can compare human vs. digital labor in terms of accuracy, efficiency, cost, and project duration.
  3. You need to understand better how RPA supports legacy processes and systems: RPA enables enterprises to keep legacy systems by making integration with cloud and web/app-based services, transforming abilities to connect legacy with modern tools, applications, and even mobile apps. Efficiency and effectiveness will be improved across crucial departments, including HR, finance, and legal.

Process mining: Subsumed into other solutions and markets

Process mining can save your business

As a key technology, process mining is an excellent method to analyze processes and ensure conformance, compliance, and learn about variations in system paths. However, process mining does not address manual process aspects. As yet, the tech is unable to cross systems, cross functions, or cross-organizational processes. Also, process mining as a pure technology cannot leverage human understanding nor combine facts with feelings, for the complete birdseye view and ‘purpose’ of a process.

This is why Dr. Gero Decker, Signavio Co-founder and CEO, predicted earlier this year that process mining will unlikely survive as a stand-alone market for very long. From a Signavio perspective, clients need to mix the system processes that they can view through process mining with the manual steps that inevitably take place in an exact end-to-end process. Indeed, many performance issues can be traced to a misalignment between manual and automated processes.

With this, process mining will likely be subsumed into other solutions and markets. As to whether that will be alongside different process and analysis and design capabilities, such as vendors like Signavio, is yet to be seen. After all, having a front-end understanding of the robotics solution is required for enterprise-wide deployment. Process discovery will also be a prime use case moving forward.

Process mining: Customer experience and customer journey mapping

Reconfigure customer delight

The integration of process mining with other technologies is also essential in growing the market. With process management, we already talk about customer engagement, which empowers companies to shift away from lopsided efficiency goals, which often frustrate customers, towards all-inclusive effectiveness goals, built around delighting customers at the lowest organizational cost possible.

Further, the application of process mining within customer journey mapping (CJM)—especially when linked to the underlying processes—offers the bundled capability of better business understanding and outside-in customer perspective, connected to the processes that deliver them. So, by connecting process mining with a customer-centric view across producing, marketing, selling, and providing products and services, customer delight becomes a strategic catalyst.

Process mining for customer loyalty

In turn, process mining will naturally drive customer loyalty, revealing the information you need, but cannot easily access, in a clear format that enables actions to be realized before the competition. Today’s organizations are competing on value, and winning over the modern customer often requires much more than a price reduction. Customers want an enriching and seamless experience across all touchpoints. By harnessing the full potential of process mining, we can understand today’s customer behavior, and connect our processes to predict future interactions across their journeys.

Keep your business radar pinging

Process mining can save your business

To find out more about how process mining can save your business and help you understand and optimize your business processes, visit the SAP Signavio Process Intelligence product page. Or, if you’d like to get a group effort started so process mining can save your business right away, sign up now for a free 30-day trial with Signavio!

Published on: July 10th 2019 - Last modified: June 10th, 2021