Beat competition by reengineering

In this continuously changing world, essential for business success is an optimal organization of the activity, aligned to the external priorities and rigors.

The managers have to reinvent their organizations, abandon the organizational and operational principles and procedures that they currently use and to create new ones.
Japanese and American business people call this re-design of business processes REENGINEERING (BPR – Business Process Reengineering).

The re-design of business processes (BPR) started in the private sector as a means of helping organizations to re-think the way in which they unfold their activity, having as final objectives the improvement of the services offered to the clients and decreasing operational costs.

BRP starts with a preliminary evaluation:
Mission of the organization – Is in necessary that the mission of the organization is adapted?
Strategic objectives – Are the strategic objectives aligned with the mission of the organization?
Client needs – Who are the clients? Which are their needs?
Successful organizations start by answering the question: “Why are we doing what we’re doing?”.

After the preliminary analysis, it is recommended that the organizations look beyond their functional departments, to the processes that unfold within the organization. The business process is an ensemble of activities and procedures for using resources, creating products and services which answer to needs of clients or market.

It is started by identifying and structuring existing processes. This results in the processes that need to be reengineered. No organization may reengineer all processes in the same time. The criteria used for the prioritization of the processes that need intervention can be the following:
Inaccuracy: Which are the processes that don’t work?
Importance: Which are the most important processes, with the most impact on the growth of client satisfaction?
Feasibility: Which are the processes which have highest chances to be successfully reengineered?

The efficient reengineering of the processes comprises 5 stages:

1. Planning – “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail”. It is started by planning the activity, after all the leaders in the organization are aware of the need of change. An inter-department team is formed, having as main objective the creation of the strategic mission and objectives of the process, both starting from the client expectations.

2. Structuring and analyzing the process – The understanding and structuring of the existing process. The major objective of this stage is the identification of the problems which do not allow the process to lead to the wanted results. The resources used in the process and the afferent costs are identified.

3. Process reengineering – the objective is obtaining as many alternative solutions as possible which can lead to the achievement of the wanted result. The feasibility of found solutions is assessed. The process is reengineered, using the optimal solutions.

4. Process implementation – This stage is the most difficult, because it implies resistance to change. Many times, organizations decide that, in parallel, they must prepare the organization, by implementing a culture of encouraging change. The implementation steps and necessary resources are planned. The new process is implemented, after preparing the involved teams. All the procedures are aligned to the new process.

5. Process monitoring and improvement – Processes do not improve over night. The must be continuously monitored. The implementation of clear indicators and feedback receiving mechanisms is critical, for allowing the repairing of possible malfunctions.
Examining the experience of several companies who successfully implemented reengineering, we have a big picture on the necessary steps for producing maximum results.

In general, reengineering leads companies to spectacular results. But you have to want it!