Global Process Awards – deadline approaches

If you have a process/performance story to tell here is the opportunity. 

The BP Group regard this as the currently best forum for sharing the stories of your projects, the learnings, the “I wouldn’t do this if I was starting over again” insights.

In 2012 I was privileged to watch the success of the US Navy Seals delivering massive successful change in a very traditional organization. Or the UK’s Bolton NHS saving hearts and minds. Or even SIngapore government transforming their business. What about PolyOne and their Lean Outside In success?
Get your feet on the deck and share also – deadline looms……

This week a large part of the BP Group team and leaders are in Florida for the annual PEX conference.

There is still time to register: and also sign-up for the
Certifed Process Professional Levels 1 and 2 program!
This is the place to network, learn and explore all that is process from the leading organizations, practitioners and Guru’s.
As the week unfolds we’ll be bringing you highlights and snippets. 
Hopefully see you there, all the Best


Recommended Upcoming Conferences for the 2012 diary

Lake Buena Vista, Florida, USA – January 16-19, 2012:
Achieving the ‘Triple Crown’ – increasing revenue, improving the customer experience and reducing costs
Cape Town, South Africa – February 20-24, 2012:

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia – March 19-21, 2012 :

Johannesburg, South Africa – April 17-18 :


London, England – April 23-27, 2012 : 

Part 3 of 4: There are four distinctly Outside-In ways that you can rethink process and in doing so achieve Triple Crown benefits.

In the first two articles in this four part theme we reviewed ‘Understand and applying Process diagnostics‘ and the ‘Successful Customer Outcome‘ map. We now move our attention to the third  way we can rethink process forever

Reframing process for an Outside-In world

A fundamental principle of Outside-In is the understanding of where your process starts and ends.

In the 20th century many techniques and approaches developed to better understand and create processes. In its earliest form pioneering work undertaken by the United States Airforce created modelling approaches based on the Structured Analysis and Design Technique (SADT) that produced iDEF (Integrate DEFinition Methods). iDEF became recognised as a global standard as a method designed to model the decisions, actions, and activities of an organization or system[1].  iDEF as a method has now reached iDEF14 [i] and embraces a wide range of process based modelling ideas. Concurrent with the development of iDEF technology providers created proprietary modelling approaches, and subsequently developed into modelling language standards, used by many organisations to represent their systems and ways of working. The convergence of business process modelling and business process management (BPM) has now produced a rich set of tools and techniques
able to model and ideally manage an organisation. In fact one of the more accepted definitions of BPM (based on the British Journal of Management[ii]): “Business process management (BPM) is a management approach focused on aligning all aspects of an organisation with the wants and needs of clients. It is a holistic management approach”

Until a few years ago process management approaches looked within the boundaries of the organisation and the combination of modelling and management approaches were adequate to understand the enterprise. The impact of process management in improving organisation performance has been profound however we now face a different reality driven by the customer.

As a consequence both disciplines now present a series of problems that include

(a)    understanding the beginning and end of the process,

(b)   the techniques used to model process are inadequate and focused  on the wrong things

Strangely customer involvement in a process often appears as an afterthought and the actual representation systems (left to right, top to bottom) create an illusion that fosters the belief that “the customer isn’t my job”.

Let’s deal with each in turn by example:
a.     The beginning and end of process

To aid the discussion let’s look at two airlines, British Airways and Southwest, and we’ll review how they ‘think’ about their business through the eyes of process. If you sit down with British Airways executives and asked the question “where does your process start and end?” the response reflects the main source of revenue, seat sales.

So the answer “the process is from the ticket purchase to the collecting the bags off the carousel” is no great surprise. In fact that is the way we have mostly thought about process in that it starts when it crosses into organisation, and finishes when it leaves. We can easily model that, identify efficiency improvements, improve throughput and optimise apparent value add.

As far as British Airways is concerned what you do outside of that process is no concern of theirs, after all they are an airline and that’s what they do. Now let’s change our perspective and visit Love Field in Texas and meet the executive team of Southwest. Ask the guys the same question “where does your process start and end?” and the answer is a whole different viewpoint.

The process begins when the potential customer thinks of the need for a flight, and only ends when they are back at home following the journey. The scope of this process is defined by the phrase “the customer experience is the process”. That’s an Outside-In perspective and creates opportunities across the whole customer experience.

More than that it raises the prospect of additional revenue streams, spreads the risk associated with a dependency on seat sales, reinforces the customer relationship and develops an entirely different way of doing business.  So let’s ask another question of our friends at Southwest “guys, what business are you in?”, and the answer changes everything you ever thought about airlines forever “we’re in the business of moving people”.

Downstream Southwest may well turn the industry further on its head as they move from being the low cost airline to the ‘no cost airline’ and give their seats free of charge. What would that do to your business model if 95% of your revenues, as with British Airways, comes from seat sales?

The business challenge for Southwest becomes one of controlling the process to benefit and maximise the customer experience. That involves partnering, sharing information and doing all necessary to make customers lives easier, simpler and more successful.

Now how do you model that?

b.     The techniques used to model process are inadequate and focused on the wrong things

We have reviewed the ultimate cause of work for all organisations is the customer. Organisations exist to serve the customer though the provision of products and services and in this way develops revenue that goes to the profit and onward distribution to the stockholders.

In other organisations without the profit motivation, for instance the public sector, then the effective delivery of services is measured by citizens and stakeholders.  Accordingly it stands to reason that everything happening within the organisation should be organised and aligned to deliver customer success and anything that isn’t is potentially ‘dumb stuff’. The techniques we use to ‘capture’ process are however not suitable to understanding the causes of work and focus attention instead on the visible tasks and activities that are perceived to create value for customers. In the context of the enlightened customer[iii] this is at best misleading and at its worst actually part of the broader problem. In Outside-In companies the focus has shifted to understanding the causes of work, and then engineering those causes to minimize negative effects.

Once more to go Outside-In we need a perspective shift and we can achieve this by identifying those three causes of work and then set out to reveal them and their negative impact.

How big is the size of the prize? Efficiency and productivity gains of 30% to 60% are common. Cost reduction of services by 50% is not unusual.

Cause elimination is a seek and destroy mission. It’s the challenge to weed out the “dumb stuff” in our organizations.

By truly fixing the Causes of Work, rather than messing around with the Effects (a bit like moving the chairs on the deck of the Titanic) we will all find our customers and employees life simpler, easier and more successful. Are you ready to challenge your assumptions and start eliminating those causes of work? Fix the Cause, remove the effect.



[ii] Understanding Business Process Management: implications for theory and practice, British Journal of Management (2008) (Smart, P.A, Maddern, H. & Maull, R. S.)

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Global leading companies compete head to head in London in April

What do these 30 companies have in common?

They are all shortlisted finalists for this years Annual Process Excellence Awards. The team of judges has evaluated more than 200 submissions to produce the finalists who will now compete head to head at the BPGroup and Process Excellence 18th Annual Conference in London during April –

Atlantic Industries Ltd | BAA | Betfair | BP Lubricants | BSkyB | Cable & Wireless | Capgemini Polska Sp.z o.o. | Carphone Warehouse / Best Buy Europe | Citi | Computershare | DSM | Firstsource | Intelenet Global Services Pvt. Ltd | Irish Life Corporate Business | KuwaitPetroleum International | Lloyd’s Register | Motilal Oswal Securities Ltd | Network Rail | Procter & Gamble | RBS Insurance | RoyalBolton HospitalNHS Foundation Trust | RS Components UK | Schenker Arkas Transport & Trading | ScottishPower | Sellafield Ltd | Serco plc | Sutherland Global Services | Tesco | Virgin Media |

There are 8 Categories for the finalists including:
Best BPM Program | Best BPM Project | Best BPO Program | Best Lean Transformation | Best Process Improvement Program | Best Process Improvement Project in Service & Transaction | Best Project Contributing to Innovation | Best Start Up Process Improvement Program

This years entries demonstrate the rapid evolution of process excellence and BPM towards Outside-In.

If you would like to review the conference, download the brochure and attend the event please visit for the latest information.

If you are not in Europe and wish to attend the other 18th Annual Conferences we are live in:

Stockholm, Sweden – June:

Sydney, Australia, June: 

Apple v.Amazon – Two Outside-In behemoths slug it out

Both organisations are VERY successful and represent the embodiment of Outside-In:
Steve Jobs “the Customer Experience is the process”, and
Jeff Bezos “..rather than ask what are we good at and what else we can do with that skill, you ask who are our customers? What do they really need? And then you say we’re going to give them that..”

In the light of recent product launches from Apple e.g. iPad2. So how do their business models compare?

Here is an excellent review of the difference and an indicator of who is going to win the race…

Recommended Conferences and Annual Awards for Process Success

London, UK – April:
Stockholm, Sweden – June: 
Sydney, Australia, June:
Bangalore, India, July:
I will have the pleasure of sitting on the judging panels for each event and naturally we want to encourage you to share your stories of Process change, BPM, Lean Six Sigma and Outside-In. Visit the conference sites above to find out more and we will hopefully see you receiving an Award or simply joining us to witness the advancing trends towards the Customer Oriented business. 
Our team of BP Group Executives working and delivering across the events, and very much welcoming questions, observations and hot topic suggestions includes:
USA & UK: Charles Bennett –
Europe: Martina Beck-Friis –
ANZ: David Mottershead –
Australia: Stephen Nicholson –
SE Asia: Steve Towers –
South America – Charles Bennett – 
The most recent event was in the US during January. 800 people participated with the IQPC at a splendid annual get together which showcased the leading global process companies. The IQPC team are leading the global conference circuit with well organised and encouragingly interesting sessions. 
If you need to make a choice then our recommendation, based on direct feedback of the membership, is to book for one of the above events. You will never think of process in the same way again!

CPP Master® Series FREE webinars and resources

BP Group updates and *NEW* WEBINAR series with CPP Master® Martina Beck-Friis

The CEMMethod® WEBINAR with Martina Beck-Friis

When you’re in a support department like IT, Finance, or HR who is your end customer, the rest of the organisation or customers outside…(Hussein Patel)

Welcome to the BP Group led by Charles Bennett –
Dedicated groups for the Certified Process Practitioner | Professional | Master |

** David Mottershead Provides us with a new perspective with a prezi ?!**

** Articles **
Outside-In is a business imperative (Steve Towers)

All the Best until next time,
Steve Towers, BP Group Founder

BIG thanks to the BP Group Advisors, Managers & Sundowner Directors including:
John Corr | Sunil Dutt Jha | Charles Bennett | David Mottershead | Erika Westbay | Janne Ohtonen | Nick Harvard | Stephane Haelterman | Paul Bailey | Martina Beck-Friss | Mark Barnett | Steve Melville | Stephen Nicholson | Marjolein Towler | Jennifer van Wyk | MichelineLogan |

See them at http::// |

BP Group 18th Annual CONFERENCE | Book your diary in Orlando Jan 17-21, 2010