Support Process Reinvention
Process reinvention and innovation are the most widely
applied component of VOI. Enterprises have been using new enterprise
application infrastructures and solutions to change what they are
doing and how they are doing it. To achieve such reinvention, however,
enterprises must get past memories of past experiences of business
Limitation of Business Process Reengineering.
The knowledge management literature is awash with analyses of the
failures of the round of business process reengineering (BPR) in
the 1990s, which was supported by first-generation knowledge management
tools and philosophies. Early BPR focused on productivity gain (efficiency),
treated knowledge as a thing, failed to recognize the
richness of employees tacit insight and underestimated the
importance of the social elements of knowledge ecology. BPR failed
to take a systemic perspective. The personnel reductions and reallocations
of energies made by first-generation BPR helped enterprises trim
costs, but many enterprise processes suffered.
Todays approach to process reinvention begins
by taking a systemic perspective and understanding the importance
of all elements of the knowledge ecology. Moreover, the focus is
on not just enhancing productivity, but on changing the dynamics
of enterprise processes through collaboration and innovation. Experience
has shown that process reinvention can yield a wide range of advances,
ranging from the incremental to the transformative.
Incremental Business Process Reinvention.
The emergence of early examples of the next generation of enterprise
application infrastructures and solutions provides many opportunities
for process reinvention. Technology-driven process reinvention is
enabling colleges and universities to refashion their processes,
policies, organizational structures, and relationships with stakeholders
of all kinds.
For example, in the 1990s, the University of Delaware
used technology-enabled process reinvention to create its ground-breaking
student one-stop shopping facility and to reshape the
dynamics of its relationship with students. This process of continuous
reinvention has continued through today, using portal technology
and Web services.
Even today, many enterprises have made process reinvention
a fundamental element of their selection and implementation of ERP.
They have discovered that process reinvention and measurement of
the resulting changes in performance continue throughout the entire
ERP project life cycle process. Some early successes in process
reinvention are possible during the planning, acquisition and deployment
phases. However, experience has shown that the full potential of
incremental process reinvention will only be achieved after the
enterprise has experienced the best practice processes embedded
in mature ERP products. The full benefits of process reinvention
will come through continuous improvement during the experience and
improvement phases. Measurable improvements can be realized during
the first two years of the process and can continue at significant
levels for seven or eight years or even more.
The University of Minnesota has used the development
of its portal as a vehicle for reinventing its ERP-based processes.
In the process, it has reshaped its relationships with students,
faculty, and staff. Minnesota used portal-based e-business to simplify
the ways in which users experienced the Universitys
core processes and services. Focusing initially on essential core
services (admissions, registration, communication, and the like)
the University has progressively extended its reinvention to include
other academic and administrative products, services, and functions.
These innovations have changed the dynamics of how users engage
university products, services, and knowledge, enabling individuals
to self-serve more of their needs for knowledge and