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Being human in a digital world? – FireStart and Celonis show how.

An article by Roy Bruhn

Digital transformation initiatives can have a reputation for not quite delivering what they were set out to do.1) When it comes to automation, AI and robots we live in exciting times. While Process Mining is predicted to “remain top-of-mind” in 2020, there seems to be a shift with Robotic Process Automation (RPA). It is pointing towards a broader automation across the enterprise, orchestrating true end-to-end processes.2) This is an area where a Business Process Automation (BPA) platform can make all the difference. So how can this look like?

There is the too well-known tension between business expectation of what new technologies can do for you and the perceived and measurable benefits of using them, once implemented. Could it be that there is still more human interruption in an otherwise digital utopia? Yes, there is, and we believe human disruption is a good thing, if it is embraced and managed well.

How BPA makes the difference 

A BPA platform considers all aspects of your business processes, including humans and robots alike. We need to acknowledge, that our workforce is the one most important resource of the business. Digital transformation is not about taking the human workforce out of the equation and replacing them with robots, software and fancy ideas. It is about employee enablement and serving each one of us, so that we can do what we are best at. And no, what we are best at is not pushing emails around or copy’n’pasting data from left to right.

FireStart’s vision has always been workforce empowerment in an environment of constant digital change. By combining the best of human potential with the latest technologies we can find synergies that result in actionable digital transformation steps, that deal with real and factual business needs. No one needs disjointed ideas cooked up in the ivory towers of departmental silos.

So, it does not come as a surprise that FireStart is joining forces with Celonis, the 2019 Unicorn of the more and more emerging discipline of Process Mining. Process Mining and a managed BPA approach is a match made for digital transformation success. That’s why they teamed up at this year’s OPEX Business Transformation World Summit in Orlando and delivered a workshop that demonstrated the whole life cycle of process mining, mapping and automation. So, what is in for us?

Outside the box: BPA meets Process Mining

Experienced business process modelers probably agree how time-consuming it can be, to identify the “status quo” process situation. However, establishing a reliable baseline is the first important step when undertaking any improvement activities. Otherwise, you won’t be able to measure progress towards a successful implementation. The challenge is that business processes can be a rather subjective matter. Ask four people how things are done and you might get five answers.

In the areas of partiality, limited scope and poor visibility process mining plays out its strengths. Based on the real event logs of business activities alone and no other non-factual information, Celonis’ algorithms engineer an objective model of the process. These results can then be used by FireStart for further enrichment with attribute data and mapped to your overall process landscape. This allows the right visibility for all stakeholders to decide where to automate effectively, and to see, manage and control the entire improvement life cycle of a business process end-to-end.

Unleash the power of end-to-end business processes

Former isolated activities can now start to make sense on a strategic level. FireStart’s way of doing business process automation are based on BPMN2.0 compliant models, and with its intuitive low-code approach it significantly leverages the insight that process mining has brought to light. With enterprise wide automation, providing context, governance and improvement cycles play a pivotal role, when working towards a strategic approach, and is crucial when designing human-centric workflows.

The OPEX workshop showed how combining Process Mining and BPA result in high user adoption. Poor user adoption is responsible for many transition projects to fail. By using a targeted, fact-based method and enabling implementation in small steps businesses can also benefit from a quick and consistent ROI.

It’s a people thing

I came across EDP’s, the utility giant’s, manifesto where it is summed up like this: “Digital is a people thing.” I love the idea how they promote that “digital” is not a world apart or a cold place or something that happens to me.

It is about all of us and it can be a place where we belong. With this approach to technology and change, we help to engage people and do not to alien them. Sounds like a good idea to me. Let’s do more of that.

 

Sources

1) https://www.mckinsey.com/business-functions/organization/our-insights/unlocking-success-in-digital-transformations
2) https://techbeacon.com/enterprise-it/robotic-process-automation-5-key-trends-watch

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