Business Process Reengineering

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Core Principles for Business Process Reengineering

Business Process Reengineering (BPR) refers to the redesign of some of the business processes to achieve significant improvements in key areas such as cost, output, speed, service, and quality. BPR is aimed at cutting down on costs and reducing redundancies in processes. Companies that incorporate the use of BPR are more likely to attain faster speed, improved customer focus, a better quality of services and products, and are more dynamic to the ever-changing market needs (Galliers & Baker, 1995). Business Process Reengineering has seven principles. The first principle states that work should be organized around outcomes and not the jobs. One of the principles indicates that responsibilities that are performed by several different individuals can be merged into a single specialized task (Kissflow, 2017). Sequential activities may sometimes have errors, delays, and rework since various people are handling diverse activities. The second principle emphasizes the identification of all the procedures and processes in a company and prioritization depending on urgency. The third principle indicates that data collection should be merged with the processing units.

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This means that data handling needs to be done by the same person who collected the information. It reduces the errors that may happen due to the elimination of external contact with the data. The fourth principle illustrates that a shared database should interconnect the dispersed departments. The advances which have occurred in the technological field allow the company to connect units that are dispersed geographically using a common shared database. When databases are centralized, they provide economies of scale and faster responses to anyone in need of the information. The fifth principle explains linking the activities that are running parallel to each other rather than just integrating the result (Sweet Process, 2017). Parallel functions can be coordinated through the use of shared databases and communication networks. Linking parallel activities play a major role in eliminating high costs and reducing delays in the outcome of the process. The sixth principle states that performance should be the ultimate decision point, and control should be built during the process. The seventh principle states that data should be captured once and at its origin point. This approach helps to save unnecessary costs due to re-entries. Therefore, the highest operational efficiency of a company is achieved when it combines the seven principles in its processing activities.

Key Process Problems Being Faced by the Army

The U.S. Army is a large enterprise and has a mission of fighting and conquering the entire American war. The departments in the Army are not operating under maximum efficiency given the lack of BPR implementation. One of the problems that the U.S. Army faces is the fact that talent management is not given priority among young people in the Army. The military does not prioritize the identification of the strengths and the talents of young soldiers and develop them into the best possible skillset. Another major challenge that affects the U.S. Army is the issue of speed in their operations. Processes take too long before being executed or implemented.

Key Problems, Their Effects, and Their Place within the Company’s Structure and Hierarchy

Talent management is one of the major problems that is affecting the performance of the Army. Talent refers to the total of the exceptional skills, behaviors, and experiences of each soldier. Through proper talent management, it is easy to know the unique capabilities and strengths of each soldier of the troop. Talent management balances the necessity of the warrior with those of the organization, and it aligns soldiers with requisitions to help them meet the current and future needs of the Army (Ansar & Baloch, 2018). The assigned officers in charge of talent management are between the colonel and major ranking, and only a small number of soldiers are allowed to perform innovative roles. The success of any organization is determined by empowering the most motivated people who have the right goals to engage in roles that bring about innovation and positive change in the company. If such people are not enabled, the organization does not discover new and more efficient ways of handling its processes to reduce cost and time. Talent management requires the intervention of highly skilled managers, trained individuals, and project champions. It is the role of the U.S. Army Human Resource Command to equip the various units with manning guidance while the senior N.C.O.s need to carry out talent management in the Army.

Another major challenge is the issue of speed when creating the four-star command. Notably, the approach that is used by Contract Field Teams (C.F.T.s) is prone to annoying delays in areas of capacity growth, staffing, and training of personnel. Interruptions are likely to happen during personnel and leadership transitions. Even when the options are readily available, the process still takes a couple of years. An example is when there was a notice that the Army needs a service pistol. Such an announcement happened in 2011, the competition started in 2015, and the fielding and the introduction were initiated in 2018. General Murray, the Army Futures Command, stated that the C.F.T.s had decreased the conditioning phase from three to five years to twelve months; therefore, accelerating the development phase, but still, the improvement pace was slow (Ansar & Baloch, 2018). Innovative goals that need extensive and well-researched development requirements need to be executed fast, and the five years cycle is too long since those goals are meant to solve a problem and make work easier.

The Army, therefore, takes a long time before completing the innovation cycles to the level where they are beneficial to the organization. Every day the world uncovers new technology and innovations which keep changing with time (Harmon, 2010). A five-year cycle is too long to develop a single innovation that would otherwise be launched efficiently using BPR. The speed issue is even worse in science and technology innovation, where leaders such as Behler Kristopher, who works in the Army Research Laboratory, admitted that most of the efforts are in the infancy levels (Harmon, 2010). After projects pass through the science and technology phase, they proceed to the development and programs phase before heading to fielding. Top management in those sectors scrutinizes the programs properly before they are released. The procedure of scrutiny also takes much time, therefore, slowing down the development process. Hence, the new generation of soldiers does not see the benefits of the innovation that takes longer to work, and the top management continues exposing them to the risk of using the outdated methods in battle.

How BPR Principles Can Be Used to Solve the Problems and the Expected Results

One of the principles that the Army can adopt is first identifying the processes they adopt and ranking in terms of urgency. Talent management should be prioritized and must be an ongoing process since it helps shape the future of the organization by nurturing the talent of the young people in the organization. In addition, talent management plays a significant role in supporting the organization’s culture (Schmiedel et al., 2013). Furthermore, with proper talent management, the administration can tap on the abilities of the various members of the troops in times of adversity. The soldiers are also able to demonstrate their best skills and abilities since they are assured that the management will consider and nurture them to their perfect area of expertise. Additionally, processes such as innovations should be prioritized, and more time dedicated to the research and development of inventions. Such innovations result in saving costs and improved efficiency. The Army needs to successfully navigate the diversity of the world to preserve its competitive edge in future and current adversaries. Innovating processes that deliver value and readiness using BPR can be more successful and less costly as compared to buying technological solutions.

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Major Barriers or Sources of Resistance to Attempting a BPR-Type Solution to your Problems

One of the major barriers to the use of a BPR solution is the current policies that are applied in the Army and that fail to accomplish the set goals. Moreover, a small number of candidates are the ones who are allowed to participate in C.F.T.s; therefore, it limits those with the capability to partake in the exercise. In addition, only a few military leaders know spearhead innovation projects, and there is a barrier in recruiting highly skilled people in driving those plans; this makes the whole process to be slow since the leaders do not understand what is expected of them. The bureaucracy in the Army is also a major hindrance to a BPR solution that requires decisions to be made by the person doing the task. In the Army, before a process is approved, it has to go through a chain of top managers, which slows down the process causing major delays.

Conclusion

Business process reengineering solutions are important in the current age, and the Army needs to adopt BPR solutions to address some of the major challenges they face in matters of talent management and slow speed of processes. The military should strive to implement all the seven principles of the BPR. Through business process reengineering, the Army should be able to prioritize talent management as a major goal in the organization to nurture the talents and abilities of the workforce. This will help improve the efficiency in the Army since it will improve access to the skills of the soldiers when the need arises. Besides, the military needs to prioritize and focus more on research to reduce the period it takes before an innovative procedure is approved. Moreover, people in charge of developing the innovation should be able to control all the information regarding the invention, therefore reducing the bureaucracy in making decisions and saving time. Companies that incorporate the use of business process reengineering are more likely to achieve a faster production speed, a better customer focus, more flexibility, and high-quality services and products.

References

Ansar, N., & Baloch, A. (2018). Talent and talent management: Definition and issues. I.B.T. Journal of Business Studies, 14(2), 213-230. Web.

Galliers, R. D. & Baker, B. S. H. (1995) An approach to business process reengineering: The contribution of socio-technical and soft OR concepts. Information Systems and Operational Research, 33(4) 263-278. Web.

Harmon, P. (2010). The scope and evolution of business process management. V. Brocke and M. Rosemann (Eds.), Handbook on business process management 1, international handbooks on information systems, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg. (pp. 37-81) Web.

Kissflow. (2017). Business process reengineering (B.P.R.) – definition, steps, and examples. Web.

Schmiedel, T., Brocke, J., & Recker, J. (2013). Development and validation of an instrument to measure organizational cultures’ support of business process management. Information & Management, 51(1):43-56. Web.

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Sweet Process. (2017). The ultimate guide to business process reengineering. Web.

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