Business Process Reengineering
A major government agency charged with fighting major crime, including terrorism, suffered a major failure after attempting to automate their case management system. They had neglected the critical step of reengineering their processes to streamline them to remove waste and redundancy. As a result, their new system automated inefficient processes and was eventually deemed unusable and was scrubbed after much time and many tax dollars were spent.
A critical, yet sometimes still overlooked step of system implementation is the mapping of the As-Is and To-Be processes. The As-Is provides an honest assessment of current operations – including their variability and inefficiencies. The To-Be maps the desired end state. Jumping directly to the To-Be misses the critical opportunity to understand how the users of the system, and their management, will need to retool to take full advantage of the intended benefits of the new system and survive the transition from the old way of doing business to the new. When the major government agency in this case study set out to replace their antiquated case management system, they skipped the required step of mapping their current processes. As a result, they never identified and eliminated waste and rework and essentially “paved the cow path.” The result was a bloated and inefficient system that never met the needs of the users. Instead of designing a more proficient and automated system, they achieved the exact opposite. The ineffectual system was eventually scrapped after increased Congressional scrutiny.
The government agency was still in need of a modernized case management system and was given a second chance by Congress. This time around, they invested in the reengineering step of understanding their current process and thus helped ensure a successful project. H&Co staff participated as experienced facilitators and modelers in business process reengineering and transformation to guide them in the mapping efforts. The implementation team utilized Six Sigma and Lean techniques to remove inefficiencies and redundancy from the case management approach including 137 specific enterprise-wide sub-processes. The facilitated mapping of these sub-processes, done hand-in-hand with the eventual system owners and users, formed the foundation for the successful engineering and deployment of their new case management system.
By leading the transformation effort in a sound, structured way, using well-proven techniques and significant user engagement, H&Co staff contributed to the building of a new case management system. We mapped their As-Is and To-Be enterprise-wide processes utilizing Integrated Process Teams drawn from agents and support staff across the agency. Upon completion, the team delivered 137 fully documented and validated business processes, which showed all inputs, outputs, roles, responsibilities, touch points, handoffs and required approvals. These artifacts were used as the building blocks for the new case management system.
Proper Business Process Reengineering led by experienced facilitators adhering to industry best practices significantly raises the likelihood of successful system implementation.