Measurement and Maturity of Business Processes

Measurement and Maturity of Business Processes

Laura Sanchez (University of Castilla-La Mancha, Spain), Andrea Delgado (University of the Republica, Uruguay), Francisco Ruiz (University of Castilla-La Mancha, Spain), Felix Garcia (University of Castilla-La Mancha, Spain) and Mario Piattini (University of Castilla-La Mancha, Spain)
Copyright: © 2009 |Pages: 25
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-288-6.ch024
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Abstract

The underlying premise of process management is that the quality of products and services is largely determined by the quality of the processes used to develop, deliver and support them. A concept which has been closely related to process quality over the last few years is the maturity of the process and it is important to highlight the current proposal of Business Process Maturity Model (BPMM), which is based on the principles, architecture and practices of CMM and CMMI for Software and describes the essential practices for the development, preparation, deployment, operations and support of product and service offers from determining customer needs. When maturity models are in place, it is important not to forget the important role that measurement can play, being essential in organizations which intend to reach a high level in the maturity in their processes. This is demonstrated by observing the degree of importance that measurement activities have in maturity models. This chapter tackles the Business Process Maturity Model and the role that business measurement plays in the context of this model. In addition, a set of representative business process measures aligned with the characteristics of BPMM are introduced which can guide organizations to support the measurement of their business processes depending on their maturity.
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Introduction

As stated in (OMG, 2007), “the underlying premise of process management is that the quality of products and services is largely determined by the quality of the processes used to develop, deliver and support them”. Regardless of what the business of an organization is, whether software development, government business or manufacturing, the need to explicitly define, manage, measure, control, analyze and improve its business processes is the same. A concept which has been closely related to process quality over the last few years is the maturity of the process, especially in the context of software processes.

Process maturity is based on the first ideas of (Crosby, 1979) and (Humphrey, 1987) and represents the degree of explicit definition, management, measurement, control and effectiveness a process has. The works of Humphrey (Humphrey, 1987) were carried out in the context of the development of CMM (Paulk et al., 1993) and later CMMI (CMMI Product Team, 2002 and 20062006), and have become important reference models for improving the capability of software organizations. Since then, many similar standards have been developed for other processes, for example the People CMM (Curtis, 1995) which applied process maturity to the management and development of an organization’s workforce.

In a mature organization, processes are defined, performed and managed and accurately communicated to the staff, and work activities are carried out according to planned processes. These processes are documented and usable with roles and responsibilities that are clearly defined and understood by the people performing the associated activities. The needed improvements in selected processes are developed and controlled and aligned with business objectives. The quality of products and services are monitored, as well as the processes that produce them (OMG, 2007). Thus, the importance and benefits of process maturity in an organization are clear.

Recently, earlier proposals which have shown themselves to be useful in the context of software processes have been applied to business processes. The main example of this is the current proposal for a Business Process Maturity Model (OMG, 2007), which is based on the principles, architecture and practices of CMM and CMMI for Software and describes the essential practices for the development, preparation, deployment, operations and support of product and service offers from determining customer needs. The BPMM, like other maturity models, is expected to benefit organizations in terms of rework reduction, consistency and improvements in quality (OMG, 2007).

When maturity models are in place, it is important not to forget the important role that measurement can play. As a matter of fact, measurement is essential in organizations which intend to reach a high level in the maturity in their processes. This is demonstrated by observing the degree of importance that measurement activities have in maturity models. Measurement provides objective information about and a view of project performance, process performance, process capability and product and service quality. Moreover, measurement helps to provide objective insight into issues in order to identify and manage risks and to provide the early detection and resolution of problems.

The use of measures and other information makes it possible for organizations to learn from the past in order to improve performance and achieve better predictability over time. It also provides information that improves decision-making in time to affect the business outcome. Therefore measurement activities are fundamental for the improvement of process, product and service quality, since they provide objective information that can be used for decision making. An organization with a mature approach in this area will have confidence in its abilities to deliver products or services that meet its customers’ needs (Goldenson et al., 2003)

Key Terms in this Chapter

Activity: An element of work performed as part of a planned effort. An activity is often the lowest level work element in a work breakdown structure. It normally has an expected duration, an expect cost, and expected resource requirements, (BPMM, 2007).

Maturity Level: A maturity level is a defined evolutionary plateau of process improvement. Each maturity level stabilizes an important part of the organization’s processes, (BPMM, 2007).

Business Process Model: A Business process model is a model of a business process of an organization, where a business process describes one of the standard sets of activities the organization needs to do to address one or more business requirements, (BPMM, 2007).

Measurement and Analysis: A list of activities which principal objective is to use quantitative information (obtained with measurement activities) to guide management decisions. Moreover, they involve planning and preparing for measurement, specifying the measures and measurement activities and performing them. Later, measurement results are studied to offer utility for organizations. Examples of the types of analyses that are performed include: a) estimation to support planning, b) analyzing feasibility of plans and alternatives, c) monitoring work performance, and d) monitoring performance of products, (BPMM, 2007).

Process Maturity: Is the extent to which processes are explicitly defined, managed, measured, controlled and effective. Process maturation implies that process capability is improved over time, (BPMM, 2007).

Business Process Execution: Business process execution refers to the actual run of a process by a process engine, which is responsible for instantiating and controlling the execution of business processes. Process models are used by the process engine to instantiate and control the enactment of process instances, (Weske, 2008).

Maturity Model: A maturity model is an evolutionary roadmap for implementing the vital practices from one or more domains of organizational process. (BPMM, 2007)

Guidelines: They are a list of advices that can be used to support the implementations of practices of the process areas. They cover topics that are applicable for many practices, but they are considered to be optional for the practices, (BPMM, 2007).

Process Improvement: A program of activities designed to improve the performance and maturity of the organization’s processes, and the results of such a program, (CMMI, 2002).

Complete Chapter List

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Table of Contents
Preface
Jorge Cardoso, Wil van der Aalst
Chapter 1
Tiziana Margaria, Bernhard Steffen
The one thing approach is designed to overcome the classical communication hurdles between application experts and the various levels of IT experts.... Sample PDF
Business Process Modeling in the jABC: The One-Thing Approach
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Chapter 2
Huy Tran, Ta’id Holmes, Uwe Zdun, Schahram Dustdar
This chapter introduces a view-based, model-driven approach for process-driven, service-oriented architectures. A typical business process consists... Sample PDF
Modeling Process-Driven SOAs: A View-Based Approach
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Chapter 3
Stefan Jablonski
This chapter presents a process modeling approach for holistic process management. The main idea is that domain specific process models are required... Sample PDF
Process Modeling for Holistic Process Management
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Chapter 4
Matthias Kloppmann, Dieter Koenig, Simon Moser
This chapter introduces a set of languages intended to model and run business processes. The Business Process Modeling Notation 1.1 (BPMN) is a... Sample PDF
The Dichotomy of Modeling and Execution: BPMN and WS-BPEL
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Chapter 5
Chun Ouyang, Michael Adams, Arthur H.M. ter Hofstede
Due to the absence of commonly accepted conceptual and formal foundations for workflow management, and more generally Business Process Management... Sample PDF
Yet Another Workflow Language: Concepts, Tool Support, and Application
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Chapter 6
Modelling Constructs  (pages 122-141)
Ekkart Kindler
There are many different notations and formalisms for modelling business processes and workflows. These notations and formalisms have been... Sample PDF
Modelling Constructs
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Chapter 7
Kwanghoon Kim, Clarence A. Ellis
This chapter introduces the basic concepts of information control net (ICN) and its workflow models. In principle, a workflow model is the... Sample PDF
ICN-Based Workflow Model and its Advances
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Chapter 8
Manfred Reichert, Peter Dadam
In dynamic environments it must be possible to quickly implement new business processes, to enable ad-hoc deviations from the defined business... Sample PDF
Enabling Adaptive Process-Aware Information Systems with ADEPT2
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Chapter 9
Macello La Rosa, Marlon Dumas, Arthur H.M. ter Hofstede
A reference process model represents multiple variants of a common business process in an integrated and reusable manner. It is intended to be... Sample PDF
Modeling Business Process Variability for Design-Time Configuration
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Chapter 10
Cesare Pautasso
Model-driven architecture (MDA), design and transformation techniques can be applied with success to the domain of business process modeling (BPM)... Sample PDF
Compiling Business Process Models into Executable Code
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Chapter 11
Cinzia Cappiello, Barbara Pernici
This chapter illustrates the concept of repairable processes and self-healing functionalities and discusses about their design requirements.... Sample PDF
Design of Repairable Processes
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Chapter 12
Web Process Adaptation  (pages 245-253)
Kunal Verma
Adaptation is an important concept for Web processes. The author provides an overview of adaptation with respect to control theory and how it is... Sample PDF
Web Process Adaptation
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Chapter 13
Carlo Combi, Giuseppe Pozzi
Time is a very important dimension of any aspect in human life, affecting also information and information management. As such, time must be dealt... Sample PDF
Temporalities for Workflow Management Systems
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Chapter 14
Karsten Ploesser, Nick Russell
This chapter discusses the challenges associated with integrating work performed by human agents into automated workflows. It briefly recounts the... Sample PDF
The People Integration Challenge
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Chapter 15
Dimka Karastoyanova, Tammo van Lessen, Frank Leymann, Zhilei Ma, Joerg Nitzche, Branimir Wetzstein
Even though process orientation/BPM is a widely accepted paradigm with heavy impact on industry and research the available technology does not... Sample PDF
Semantic Business Process Management: Applying Ontologies in BPM
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Chapter 16
Hernani Mourao, Pedro Antunes
In this chapter the authors propose a solution to handle unexpected exceptions in WfMS. They characterize these events deeply and recognize that... Sample PDF
Using WfMS to Support Unstructured Activities
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Chapter 17
Guillermo Jimenez
In this chapter the authors introduce the role of a business process engineer (BPE) and necessary competencies to define, simulate, analyze, and... Sample PDF
Business Process Engineering
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Chapter 18
Christoph Bussler
This chapter introduces the application of process management to business-to-business (B2B) integration and enterprise application integration... Sample PDF
B2B and EAI with Business Process Management
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Chapter 19
Paul Grefen
This chapter is devoted to automated support for interorganizational business process management, that is, formation and enactment of business... Sample PDF
Systems for Interorganizational Business Process Management
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Chapter 20
Guido Governatori, Shazia Sadiq
It is a typical scenario that many organisations have their business processes specified independently of their business obligations (which includes... Sample PDF
The Journey to Business Process Compliance
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Chapter 21
M. Castellanos, A.K. Alves de Medeiros, J. Mendling, B. Weber, A.J.M.M. Weijters
Business Process Intelligence (BPI) is an emerging area that is getting increasingly popular for enterprises. The need to improve business process... Sample PDF
Business Process Intelligence
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Chapter 22
Diogo R. Ferreira
This chapter introduces the principles of sequence clustering and presents two case studies where the technique is used to discover behavioral... Sample PDF
Applied Sequence Clustering Techniques for Process Mining
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Chapter 23
Kamal Bhattacharya, Richard Hull, Jianwen Su
This chapter describes a design methodology for business processes and workflows that focuses first on “business artifacts”, which represent key... Sample PDF
A Data-Centric Design Methodology for Business Processes
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Chapter 24
Laura Sanchez, Andrea Delgado, Francisco Ruiz, Felix Garcia, Mario Piattini
The underlying premise of process management is that the quality of products and services is largely determined by the quality of the processes used... Sample PDF
Measurement and Maturity of Business Processes
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