Ready to ensure your business processes are effective, efficient, and enthusiastically adopted by everyone across the organization? Then let’s take a look at what business process design: what it is, why it’s important, and how to design new business processes in your organization with the help of a dedicated platform.

What is Business Process Design (BPD)?

Business process design (BPD) is the creation of new workflows from scratch. The process may take place at the start of product/service production or delivery. The goal of BPD is to develop effective processes and workflows that are scalable and easy to replicate. 

All businesses have processes; some are implicit, while others may be formalized. However, defining and documenting business processes can position a company to perform at its highest level. 

What is a business process?

A business process is a series of steps or activities performed to achieve a specific outcome. Examples could include:

  • All of the steps required in the Finance department for the reimbursement of expenses

  • HR processes, such as employee onboarding and employee offboarding

  • These processes are the foundation of efficiency and can be replicated easily. Formalizing tasks that employees perform regularly will help to establish best practices, and guarantee that all relevant parties know the exact steps that go into a business process or workflow. 

    Why is business process design important?

    Business process design has a direct impact on your bottom line and company’s success. Without an explicit, consistent, and structured system, your company could have trouble maintaining productivity or managing costs. The more efficient your business process, the better your results. 

    In addition to ensuring each team member knows the exact tasks and order of activity, BPD helps you prevent unnecessary steps in order to simplify a process and conserve resources. Other benefits include: 

  • A shared understanding of the overall business strategy: An effective business process helps you execute your business strategy but sometimes there is confusion surrounding the necessity of, or the implementation of, new processes. BPD ensures that everyone understands the overall business goal(s), and the ways in which employees' daily tasks contribute to the bigger goal. 
  • Organizational visibility: Good business process design makes it easy for employees to access information and track progression toward goals. With this information, they can make informed business decisions quickly, and implement necessary changes to close gaps in performance. 
  • Better communication: Business process design creates a common language and methodology for communicating guidelines and procedures. The documentation of each task will transfer and preserve company knowledge. When designing new processes, be sure to automate approvals and updates so stakeholders never miss a deadline. 
  • Standardize business tasks: Business process design should eliminate guesswork. Standardized processes are easy to follow and memorize, resulting in fewer mistakes, increased productivity and safety, and reduced costs. Well-designed business processes ensure that rules are applied consistently.
  • Integration with other systems: Effective business process design ensures that a new process "plays well" with existing processes, workflows, and software. During the design process, you’ll learn how different processes impact each other, so you can avoid the duplication of work.
  • Designing a brand-new business process is an opportunity to build a team that involves stakeholders across business units, promote an understanding of overall business goals and objectives, achieve buy-in from all interested parties, and create a roadmap for success with super-efficient workflows.

    The 4 steps of business process design

    Effective business process design requires a systematic approach, with each step building upon the next. Remember that the goal is to create an optimized process that meets specific business goals. Using the four steps below to put your business process design in motion.

    1. Identify the need

    What are your motivations and reasons for designing a new process? Before starting business process design, you must know your ‘why.’ Don't make any assumptions: examine your company’s mission, target audience, customer base, and everything in between to how a new process will add value to your company.

    2. Map the process

    During business process design, process mapping uses symbols visually depict a workflow. Process maps vary in complexity, but generally include columns for actions, decision points, inputs and outputs, functions, stakeholders, units of measurements, and time/deadlines.  

    For instance, a SIPOC (Supplier, Input, Process, Output, and Customer) diagram is a high-level process map that helps you identify the: 

  • Supplier: Initiates the process

  • Input: Responsible party/role

  • Process: Plan for information distribution.

  • Output: The results.

  • Customer: The receiver.

  • 3. Test the process 

    Test every new process before fully incorporating it into your operations. For example, you could pilot small parts of a process to build upon later, or you could sabotage a process in order to examine how or why a process may fail. A new, untested process can disrupt a whole organization. Use the information gained through testing to make changes to the new process until you are satisfied. 

    4. Automate processes

    The best way to optimize a process is to automate as much as possible. Employees perform many tasks each day that are tedious and repetitive. Automation can take care of these mundane tasks so that you can spend more of your time doing rewarding work.

    Streamline business process design with Pipefy

    Business process design is part of a larger practice called business process management (BPM). BPM is an ongoing, holistic practice for improving organizational effectiveness and efficiency. It is a long-term strategy for building and maintaining processes that work across your entire organization.

    Pipefy is a BPM solution that allows you to automate processes yourself using a simple user interface. For instance, you can automatically trigger an action when an event happens. It works according to an event > action logic: when event X happens, action Y will occur automatically. This allows you to keep processes moving without manual input, and more. BPM platforms also make modeling a much simpler task and provide templates for a wide variety of common processes.

    Intrigued? Start managing reliable, efficient processes today with a free trial of Pipefy.

    All businesses have processes; some are implicit, while others may be formalized. However, defining and documenting business processes can position a company to perform at its highest level."