Those who have been involved in a workflow process migration project understand how much of a grind it is. It takes years of effort and millions of dollars to identify and then migrate existing business processes to a new system.
Perhaps the most difficult, error-prone, and time-consuming component is identifying how existing processes are performing – or even what the processes are. In this second post in a series, we’re going to show you how the Doculabs Workflow Process Migration Solution can be used across seven steps involved in every migration project. Think of our solution as an automated accelerator. You can screw a nail into a wall with a regular screwdriver, but it’s a lot faster with a power drill.
This acceleration, enabled by a combination of our decades of empirical knowledge and the capabilities of process mining from Celonis, has the potential to save our clients millions of dollars.
We developed the migration solution to help our clients analyze and migrate thousands of processes trapped in legacy workflow and case management tools such as older IBM platforms and 6.x or 7.x Pegasystems platforms. Our clients’ workflow platform upgrades cost millions of dollars and take years to realize value.
To explain how the solution works and can create value, we’re going to walk you through the seven elements of the solution. These elements of our solution align with the seven essential tasks that must be completed during any successful migration project.
The seven elements of the Doculabs Workflow Process Migration Solution are:
- Process Portfolio Analysis: Analyze the organization’s inventory of processes to profile them
- Harvest Source System: Collect process detail from the source workflow system using the Celonis process mining platform and our connector
- Process Mining: Perform analysis in Celonis to determine the right migration method
- Consolidation: Examine the consolidation and standardization opportunities for classes of similar processes
- Map to the Target Workflow System: Generate BPMN maps to ingest into the new system
- Post-Migration Monitoring: Optimize each process in the new target environment
- Program Management: View progress and dashboard in agile program management
Step 1: Process Portfolio Analysis
The first step profiles the processes in the organization to determine which have the highest volume and which are candidates for retirement. A quick example illustrates how such analysis works.
Consider a large enterprise workflow environment with 6,000 users, 2,000 workflow processes, and over 15 million work items per year.
Typically we discover that a high volume of work is concentrated in a very small number of flows. In our example, 51% of the volume flows through the 27 largest workflows. These flows should receive the most attention and resources and are the best candidates for redesign.
- Correspondingly, many flows have insignificant volume and could be candidates for consolidation or retirement. In our example, 829 workflows have fewer than 100 work items per year.
Step 2: Harvest Source System
Harvest data from the source system, which is Pegasystems in our example. Doculabs has built a proprietary connector to access the proprietary Pega tables, select the required fields– in this case activity history – and move the data into Celonis.
Step 3: Process Mining
Next, we perform a process mining analysis in Celonis to decide what migration method we should use. Our initial focus is on the high-volume processes. Continuing our example, let’s begin by process mining the 27 highest-volume processes identified in Step 1.
Profile each of those 27 processes according to three general assessment criteria, our process "Health Index": efficiency, effectiveness, and value. They are defined as follows:
- Is the process efficient, with minimal waste and complexity, as measured by automation, volume through variants, activities per case, latency, etc.?
- Is the process effective, fulfilling the business purpose of the process (e.g., does this claims process address all the claims it should; does this reregistration process address all the life events it should)?
- Is the process valuable to the future state of the business (e.g., is this process trivial or outdated and not worth migrating)?
The purpose of this exercise it to quickly determine the best migration approach for each of hundreds or thousands of processes according to decision rules, for example:
- Move As-Is: If it passes Efficient, Effective, and Value
- Retire: If it fails Efficient, Effective, and Value
- Recreate: if it passes Value, but significantly fails Efficient or Effective
- Improve: if it passes Value, and fails Efficient or Effective, but not significantly
This example shows the claims settlement process and generating a profile and migration recommendation using our process mining solution. The recommendation for this high-volume, high-value, relatively unhealthy process (shown in red) is that it be recreated.
Step 4: Consolidation
Now we look for opportunities to consolidate classes of processes where it makes business sense and where the processes that are “doing the same or similar thing” are sufficiently similar. The graphic below shows where we’ve used the process mining capability to compare different processes that “do the same or similar thing” and thus belong to the same class of processes. In this case, you see the claims processes for Auto, Marine, and Motorcycle.
From the comparison in the solution, you can recognize that Motorcycle claims should remain a stand-alone process, but Auto and Marine can be consolidated (and improved). Fewer processes to migrate and redesign means less cost, more process consistency, and easier development and maintenance.
Step 5: Map to the Target Workflow System
In Step 5 we generate industry-standard BPMN process maps to auto-ingest into the target process management systems, such as Pega 8.x, Appian, or Camunda. Our example BPMN process map looks like this:
Step 6: Post-Migration Monitoring
Thirty to 90 days after each process has been migrated into the new system and implemented is the time to see how the new processes are performing by leveraging process mining to drive continuous improvement, for example, by comparing the last two quarters KPIs for claims. This can be repeated periodically across many different processes. The screen shot below shows post-migration monitoring for a migrated claims process.
Step 7: Program Management
The last step performed with the process migration solution is program management. Many of our clients use tools like Jira to manage large migrations with agile methods. Our solution is designed to pass status information into tools like Jira. Here you see the backlog of processes working their way through the migration effort – some in initial analysis, some in testing within the target platform, others in production.
Migrating workflow processes isn’t simple. However, we can help organizations speed the migration process. The Doculabs Workflow Process Migration Solution is designed to:
- Enable process optimization during the migration process
- Reduce the total processes to be migrated by retiring low value and low-volume workflows
- Quickly identify healthy processes that should be moved as-is
- Economically identify process improvement and consolidation opportunities
What's this all mean for your organization? Simply put, using the Doculabs solution will lead to faster, more accurate migration of workflows based on data which, in turn, means a faster time to value.