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business process mapping

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13 Min Read

What Is Business Process Mapping?

What is business process mapping? 

Business Process Mapping (BPM) is the act of documenting the procedures and steps that are used to complete a task or transaction. These procedures may be manual, automated, or both. 

Documentation can include images, rules for handling exceptions, and other information to help someone who has never seen it before understand how it works. The goal of BPM is to improve efficiency by identifying areas where processes can be improved or eliminated altogether. 

When Is A Business Ready For Process Mapping

Businesses typically turn to BPM when:

  • They need more control over their operations
  • They want better visibility into what’s happening in different parts of their business
  • They want to provide employees with training materials
  • They want an easier way for new employees to learn about job responsibilities. 

Where Can Business Process Mapping Be Used? 

It can be used in any area where there are repetitive tasks or processes, such as manufacturing, distribution, service delivery, healthcare, education etc. 

Business process mapping helps organizations identify inefficiencies that may exist within their current workflows and allows them to find ways to improve these processes over time. 

Business process mapping can help with things like: 

  • Identifying opportunities for improvement
  • Eliminating bottlenecks
  • Standardizing procedures across different departments
  • Improving customer experience by simplifying order fulfillment procedures
  • Reducing inventory levels through improved forecasting

Simply put, it is getting what is in your head (or employee's heads) on paper.  You have systems that you use everyday, they may simply not be written.  In this article we will look at what process maps and workflows diagramming is all about. 

Why Business Process Mapping?

Now you are ready to process map your business and gather data on how the processes are performing. What will you attain by doing this? Well, it depends on where you are at in transitioning out of your business’ operations.

One thing I can tell you for sure…. 

You Cannot Sell, Grow or Increase Profit Without Mapping Business Systems

If you have read any of my material in the past, you would know process mapping is critical to growing any business.  You simply cannot sell a business or grow a business if all of the tasks you do within your business are in your head.  

I cannot stress enough the importance of process mapping or documenting workflows and how these help successful businesses large and small. But in the end, it really is up to you. 

What do you want from your business? 

  • Make more profit? 
  • Having more time off (...even ONE Day off?)
  • Being debt-free?
  • Have others run the business for you (exactly what you were wanting)?
  • Create a world-class, international company?
  • Have total security and freedom?
  • Increase your income and net worth?
  • Build residual income?

Are You Getting What You Want From Your Consultant?

These are just some examples, but in reality it can be anything.  If a Consultant is not asking you “what do you want?” then be prepared to get what he thinks.  The starting point in any new relationship at Profit Pro is understanding WHAT YOU WANT from your business. It’s the most important thing. 

Once we have that, we can build a customized strategy to help you achieve exactly what you want. This process has worked for more than 200 companies we have worked with over the past 30 years. 

Selling Your Business May Not Be The Best Option For You

If you are further along, then you may want to hold on to the business a little longer to reap your new efficiency profits. Or you may want to use the new documentation and examples of new growth to increase the value of your business to the new prospective owners. Either way, it can be quite the ‘WIN-WIN’ for you!

By being able to look at data on how your business processes are operating, you can look at the questions below and know that you may never face these issues again with questions such as: 

  • Are you frustrated because your sales aren’t growing like you know they could be?
  • Are you disappointed because your people didn’t get the job done on time, and you lost a customer because of it?
  • Are you wondering why your profit margins aren’t growing like you want (and need) them to?
  • Are you wondering why your employees don’t do what you ask?
  • Where the cash is at year-end after taxes?

Through business process mapping, there will be data at hand to make an informed decision when they do appear. 

Documenting Systems Via Process Mapping = Higher Business Value

By process mapping and collecting data to make decisions to improve operations, you have made your business more valuable, enabling you to ask more for your company. This also gives valid working documentation to the new owner or prospective owners on how to run the business. 

They can use this information to make successful decisions just like you have all these years; decisions that have allowed you to be in the top 4% of all businesses.

Process Maps Don't Have To Be Complicated

Process mapping does not have to be complicated but it does need to be thorough. Having your processes stored in your head may have worked fine for all these past years but the new owners or new managers of your business can’t pick your memory whenever they have a question.

profit-pro-business-consulting-process-mapping-business-systemsIt’s these pieces of information that are the real value of your business; the reason your business succeeded and grew and it is why they wanted your business in the first place.

Without these steps you would just have a building, some parts, some tools, some existing customers, maybe even some name that sits on the building or letterhead. You need to get this information into a process map. 

Identify Your Critical Steps

Process Maps or flowcharting can be complex but in its simplest form the map should point out the critical steps in a process. Let’s look at the example of manufacturing a widget. The key steps should be present from the initial decision to make the widget until the end step of sending it out complete.

profit-pro-business-consulting-process-mapping-key-business-systems-example

Build On The Process If It Is Too Vague

If you or your employees look at the steps and decide that the process or step is vague or needs clarification, add the information and details to make it complete. If the step does not add any value to the process, remove it. The goal is to have every important step documented so that anyone can follow the procedure to make the widget.

The More Business Process Mapping You Complete, The Sooner You Can Hand Off Decisions

The ability for anyone to make the decisions is important because you just captured the expertise and value of a very experienced worker or yourself in one of these steps.

Now anyone can make decisions in the widget process and free you or the experienced employee for work of higher value. 

Bonus Tip - You can add even more value by gathering data on how those processes are working so that there can be improvement decisions made in the workflow map.

It Doesn't Matter If You Want To Grow, Sell, Pass On To The Next Generation...

You have to document your processes.  That is the only way to replace yourself or position employees for more important work to grow.  This was a simple example of manufacturing a simple product.

But knowing that anyone can make the decisions in the process responsibly and knowledgeably because you have captured the essence of what needs to be done is the value of Process Mapping and Workflows.

Not Sure If Process Mapping Is Right For Your Company? 

One of the greatest values we can provide business owners is utilizing our experts from around the world to remotely document your processes.  All we need is access to your people and your Profit Pro Consultant will get it documented!

Getting this done internally is typically impossible for most businesses or their employees.  If you want to get your business documented, book a call so we can find out What You Want from your business. 

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Topics:   business process mapping

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