Sunday, July 31, 2011

Business process mapping

Managers are professionals, like lawyers, doctors and teachers. The area of professional competence is management. Managers are committed to 'management' to produce results in line with the firm's goals. A firm has a mission, the raison d'etre of the firm. The mission statement outlines the firm's important commitment, for example it may be providing excellent processed food products or quality and affordable medicines .... Based on the mission, objectives are drawn, goals are set, strategies are plotted; policies, programs and procedures are laid down. In essence, a process is created. Managers are professional process creators and process managers.

Process refers to a sequence of events, interlinked procedures to produce an output. Managers are in essence process managers. Let us assume that there is a manager for each part of the process. If the manager understands he is a part of the larger process that is generating an output, then his work will be in harmony and in balance with the firm's needs.

The MR visits doctors, promotes products, creates demand, with the help of marketing inputs - strategies - training inputs - collaterals. This demand is served through the distribution system. Products come in to the distribution system, through the production system. The inputs for the production system come from the purchase dept. All in all, a process is on, with the MR being a part of the larger system called the firm, which is full of processes in action.


HABIT: you remove H you get ABIT; you remove A you get BIT; if B is gone, you get IT. Hence, it is difficult to get rid of HABITs!

Processes create habits, and these in turn create comfort zones. Hence, revisiting processes gets a tad difficult. One is comfortable doing things the way they are, since they appear to produce outputs in line with corporate goals.

Process revisits

Process revisits are crucial to seek improvements in the processes. Improved processes will certainly produce improved outcomes. The processes revisited can belong to any department. It may be material procurement processes, HR processes, production processes, audit processes, quality processes, marketing processes, training processes ....

Revisiting processes involve understanding how things are being done, and then looking for ways to improve the way they are done, with an eye to

a) reduce wastage
b) improve efficiency
c) increase effectiveness
d) get better output

Thus, if the MR is a value delivery process of a pharma firm, we observe, MRs deliver communication inputs, render messaging, build relationships, involve in two-way transactions, offer gifts, sponsorships, and help create the demand output.

Another way of looking at things is to create a support system to improve value delivery to customers. Such an approach is value delivery through a mailer system. Or through other platforms which will engage target audiences and create the demand output for the firm. After all, the MR process is for demand creation. Hence, any other process that will create or support current process for demand output, with less wastage (or leaks), increased efficiency and effectiveness will surely be attractive to a pharma firm.

Steven Covey has said:

If we keep doing what we're doing, we're going to keep getting what we're getting.”

This is quite logical, hence, revisiting processes makes sense. For instance, today, pharmacist focus is on in the marketing process. Pfizer and GSK are organizing education meets on products for pharmacists, to get goodwill, shelf space and OTC (over-the-counter) push sales.

The idea to look at business activities with a process attitude - this is what ISO 9001 is all about. Business process mapping is what is the need of the hour for the pharma Indian industry today. Businesses are essentially processes, producing defined outputs; repeatedly.

Thanks for going through this blog, please read all other posts, recommend this blog to your circle.


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Sunil S Chiplunkar said...

Thnks and best of luck!!

bharatbook said...

Pretty good post. I hope you create more in the future..
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