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How Process Mining Supports Digital Transformation Initiatives

Updated: Sep 19, 2023

Digital transformation has become a strategic requirement for firms looking to remain competitive and relevant in today's constantly evolving business world. As companies embark on these digital transformation initiatives, it is vital that they have the necessary insights and data to optimise existing processes and make informed decisions to continuously improve and achieve operational excellence. This is where process mining comes into play.

Process mining is a data-driven technique that leverages event logs and analytics to identify the actual workflows, deviations, and bottlenecks within an organisation's processes. It offers a thorough understanding of how operations are carried out by evaluating real-time data, offering insights that often go unnoticed. This visibility is essential for organisations as they adopt new digital technologies.

Process Discovery and Documentation

Building a thorough understanding of existing procedures is one of the first tasks in the digital transformation process. Process mining allows organisations to automatically discover and document their as-is processes. This visibility provides the foundation for identifying areas that need improvement.

One such real-life example is the story of Johnson and Johnson who aimed to digitalise process mapping and discovery in hopes of digitally transforming their continuous improvement process. The exercise held in partnership with Celonis, evolved into an ongoing source of insights, eventually leading to the development of global templates for analysis and improvement and allowing them to achieve significant improvements in various areas, such as a 30% reduction in touch time and a 40% reduction in price changes.

Identifying Automation Opportunities

Automating manual and repetitive operations is an important aspect of digital transformation. Process mining aids in the discovery of these possibilities by emphasising time-consuming or error-prone tasks, such as manual data entry and lengthy approval procedures. Employing process mining has helped companies such as DSM, Qorvo, and many others to find automation opportunities in their business processes. This, in turn, has led to improved working capital, and significant savings in time and costs while also allowing employees to concentrate on more value-added, human-centric activities.

Process Optimisation

It is necessary to optimise processes prior to automation to increase efficiency. An understanding of bottlenecks and deviations within the workflows can help organisations streamline operations, reduce lead times, and enhance resource allocation, ensuring that their digital transformation efforts are built on a foundation of efficiency.

A great example of how process mining helped expedite digital transformation through process optimisation is the story of consumer giant Reckitt. Over 40 processes across various functions, from Accounts Payable to Order Management, were optimised which played a key role in their journey towards achieving operational excellence and unlocking savings worth millions.

Process Performance Measurement

By now, it is evident that utilising process mining in your business is bound to improve performance. Process mining enables real-time visibility into process performance indicators by monitoring KPIs and ensuring that improvements are in line with strategic objectives. GFG Alliance, an Australia-based metals and energy conglomerate, stands as a notable example among numerous global success stories of how process mining helped improve performance in procurement processes, cash forecasting accuracy, and harmonisation, enabling data-backed decision-making aligned with their strategic goals. By employing process mining to gain instant visibility into process performance metrics, GFG Alliance could closely track key performance indicators (KPIs) and verify that their improvements were in accordance with their strategic objectives, ultimately leading to increased efficiency and enhanced overall organisational performance.

Compliance and Auditing

A crucial element of digital transformation is ensuring compliance with laws and industry norms, especially in highly regulated industries such as financial services. Process mining helps organisations identify compliance gaps by highlighting deviations from established procedures thereby enabling them to take proactive action. This approach not only reduces non-compliance issues but also improves accountability and transparency inside the company.

Degussa Bank, a German universal bank, stands as a prime example of how process mining plays a pivotal role in achieving compliance with legal and industry regulations. The company was able to optimise order consolidation and recording rates, yielding a notable 12% enhancement.

Process mining is an invaluable tool for organisations commencing their digital transformation journey. Providing in-depth insights into existing processes enables organisations to make informed decisions, improve efficiency, ensure compliance, and ultimately align their transformation processes with strategic objectives. Furthermore, it lays the foundation for continuous improvement making process mining an essential element of any successful digital transformation project.

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