17 May 2016

The story of the business processes.
Part 2

This is the second part of the story of business processes. The first part is here.



  • So, I attended a conference, where they presented special software for controlling execution of business processes.
  • Yeah, yeah, I heard about that.
  • You install cameras and monitor what people are doing.
  • Very handy!
  • What? No!
  • What are you talking about?
  • Are you going to watch every person?
  • How do you know they are doing something, not just sitting there?
  • How do you know that they are doing it right?
  • Well, I’ll invite those who are not working to my office, ask them, apply penalties, yell at them
  • Then you are going to have to deal with each person on each matter.
  • Think big.
  • There is an easier way!

Yelling at employees

  • I don’t know… Can you give me an example?
  • For instance, I don’t like that we either lose invoices or pay them twice.
  • Suppliers often call me and ask, when I am going to pay up, and I never even knew there were an invoice.
  • That is because is has to be approved by other people and sometimes invoices get lost in the process. Sometimes we receive two invoices and pay them both.
  • Can you tell me what to do
  • Sure. Let’s draw up a process.
  • So, what do you start with?
  • How do you receive an invoice?
  • They send invoices by fax or email to Jennifer.
  • You know her?
  • She is amazing!


  • Yes, she is.
  • But let’s stick to the point and draw the process.
  • What does Jennifer do after receiving an invoice?
  • I don’t know.
  • Jennifer, could you come in please.


Jennifer entered the office.


  • Could you tell us, why do we have invoice issues?
  • How does it work?
  • I receive an invoice by fax or email.
  • Then I either go to the heads of departments to approve it or send the invoice by email.
  • I often have to go to them two or three times because they’re out and I need their signatures on the invoice.


Meanwhile, John was modeling the process in his laptop.

Business process

  • Then what?
  • Well, they either sign it, or call to the suppliers to resolve issues and then bring the invoice to the accountants.
  • It seems simple enough. Then why do we have problems?
  • Things happen. Say, I put the invoice on the table of a department head, and they forgot about it.
  • The supplier calls and demands money, and the department head is on a business trip.
  • We pay the invoice and it turns out, that there were some issues with it we didn’t know about.
  • In fact, I’ve been meaning to tell you.
  • They don’t approve in time and the suppliers demand from me.
  • The other day, one of them called, yelled at me and drove me to tears.
  • It wasn’t my fault… I did everything right…
  • There now, Jennifer.
  • Don’t take it personally.


While Peter was comforting Jennifer, John has modeled a simple business process in a business process management system. Here is what he made:

Business process diagram

  • Here it is, the first process version.
  • You can try it out
  • How did you do it so quickly?
  • It’s simple.
  • Jennifer, let me show you how to make the process work without that much of your control.
  • OK, what do we start with?
  • Start the Pay Invoice process.
  • The system sends you a task.
  • When you open it, you see a simple form, where you attach the invoice and select the approver.
  • I see, I’ll do it now.
  • OK, it’s done.
  • What’s next?
  • Click Send for Approval and the task will be sent to the department heads.
  • I don’t see how it’s different from email?
  • We’ve done this before.
  • It’s very different!
  • In the system, you can set that the approval cannot take longer than a day. If the approver does not make it in time, the system sounds the alarm: it can send a notification or reassign the task to another person. You can even reduce the bonus, if a person does not complete tasks in time.


  • That’s interesting. What if someone is on a business trip? How does it work then?
  • There are mobile apps, which will notify you, if you have tasks.
  • You can open the app and complete the task. As simple as that.
  • Well, what do you think, Jennifer?
  • Sounds interesting.
  • I will definitely spend less time on controlling invoices and won’t have to work after hours.

Discussing business processes

  • Thanks, pal, now it’s much clearer!
  • By the way, where can I find more information about this software?
  • I can give you a link to the free demo version
  • You can try it on your PC right now

Try free demo!

Experience all the BPM software features in a user-friendly interface.

Demo Version

  • Great! Thank you, John.
  • We’ll try it out.
  • Of course, it’s not hard. Well, I should go. I’ll come by soon.
  • Sure, you’re always welcome.


John left Peter and Jennifer with thoughts of a bright future.

A month later, he visited Peter again…

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