For businesses keen to make their business processes work smarter, there is a technology solution that prepares the research for you. Process and task mining are tools that make a way for finding smarter ways to work.
Process improvement is something all organizations may find beneficial. In time, processes can become mediocre, slowly eroding customer satisfaction and profits while wasting staff time and business costs.
In the fast-paced, ever-changing world we live in, the saying, “If it’s not broken, don’t fix it,” is often a recipe for disaster. When considered like this, continuous process improvement is crucial. Even for businesses with excellent operations, without regular reviews and audits, they’ll fail to respond to new demands, and eventually fall behind.
What is continuous process improvement?
Put simply, it’s a way of identifying, understanding, and enhancing processes. Typically, companies are looking to maximize efficiency by reducing the time to complete projects, cut the cost of completing a task, improve customer ratings, or ensure they meet rules and regulations.
For example, take opening a bank account. There are various steps needed, which might include collecting applicant data, checking it against fraud and sanctions lists, sending documents and setting up authentication routes, providing access to online banking sites and much more.
In such a complex process, there will always be tweaks that can be made or external changes that require updates.
What techniques are used to improve processes?
There are many methodologies to choose from, some of which (let’s be honest) seem totally bewildering to the uninitiated. Take Kaizen. In Japanese it means ‘change for the better,’ and involves incremental adjustments to cut waste and reduce errors.
Then there’s the western equivalent, Lean Six Sigma. Borrowing from its eastern counterpart, those trained in its ways gain differing-colored belts, much like a karate master. It’s a combination of Six Sigma, which minimizes process variation and increases control, and Lean. Lean, put simply, aims to slash waste, and standardize tasks.
Where do process and task mining fit in?
In light of our recent blog on these technologies, these technologies provide ways of mapping out what happens in a process and how it’s done by staff working across software in a business.
They provide total clarity on how the process runs from beginning to end and what’s done at an employee and organizational level. With clarity comes the ability to make informed decisions about improvement.
Process and task mining replace gut feelings and educated guesses about how processes work with data-driven and fact-based analysis. With this in mind, it’s understandable why you might need them. The technology can display the process deliberately so people can understand it.
Quite literally, the tools display what takes place, tracking clicks, scrolling, pasting and more, all time-stamped and with screen grabs – as well as providing a map of what takes place and when. Both UiPath technologies provide an unrivaled way of seeing and analyzing the real process as it exists.
Will the use of process and task mining catch on in continuous process improvement?
It already has. With the advent of robotic process automation (RPA), people are automating their processes and improving them at the same time. There’s been significant consolidation in the market, with the best players merging process and task mining capabilities into a single platform. Such platforms are great tools for continuous improvement.
Process mining and task mining are not revolutionary, but they are essential for any organization that wants to stay relevant. With them, you can do more in your business to consistently assess and improve the way things are done.
Get ahead with automation
If you’d like help understanding how to begin or enhance your process improvement plan, we’d love to help. Get in touch with an expert at Tquila today.
About the author
Tomas Galle has over 15 years of experience in business process management and optimization. He is the Head of Process and Task Mining at Tquila Automation, a Lean & Six Sigma practitioner, and has led multiple key projects and extensive programs for companies like Microsoft (Minit), AT&T, Amazon, and Johnson Controls.