Business Process Re-engineering

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Business Process Re-engineering

(BPR) Any radical change in the way in which an organisation performs its business activities. BPR involves a fundamental re-think of the business processes followed by a redesign of business activities to enhance all or most of its critical measures - costs, quality of service, staff dynamics, etc.
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Using information technology to improve performance and cut costs. Its main premise, as popularized by the book "Reengineering the Corporation" by Michael Hammer and James Champy, is to examine the goals of an organization and to redesign work and business processes from the ground up rather than simply automate existing tasks and functions. Reengineering is about major improvement, not incremental changes.

Driven By Competition
According to the authors, reengineering is driven by open markets and competition. No longer can we enjoy the protection of our own country's borders as we could in the past. Today, in a global economy, worldwide customers are more sophisticated and demanding.

Less Management
Modern industrialization was based on theories of specialization with millions of workers doing dreary, monotonous jobs. It created departments, functions and business units governed by multiple layers of management, the necessary glue to control the fragmented workplace.

In order to be successful in the future, the organization will have fewer layers of management and fewer, but more highly skilled workers who do more complex tasks. Information technology, used for the past 50 years to automate manual tasks, will be used to enable new work models. The successful organization will not be "technology driven;" rather it will be "technology enabled."

Customer Oriented and Radical Improvement
Although reengineering may wind up reducing a department of 200 employees down to 50, it is not just about eliminating jobs. Its goals are customer oriented: it is about processing a contract in 24 hours instead of two weeks or performing a telecommunications service in one day instead of 30. It is about reducing the time it takes to get a drug to market from eight years to four years or reducing the number of suppliers from 200,000 to 700.


The primer on the subject is the best-selling book "Reengineering the Corporation" by Michael Hammer and James Champy, (HarperBusiness, 1993). It is "must reading" for anybody who wants a basic understanding of the subject.

"BPR Wizdom: A Practical Guide to BPR Project Management" by Dennis E. Wisnosky and Rita C. Feeney (Wizdom Systems, Inc., 1999). Considered extremely helpful for top managers, it includes a blueprint for reengineering from start to finish.

"The Great Transition" by James Martin is a massive tome that elaborates on seven disciplines for engineering the enterprise, (AMACOM, 1995). Martin was one of the most prolific writers in the information field.
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Davenport and James E Short, (1990) Information technology and business process redesign, Sloan Management Review
Quality, cycle time measurements and process costs are the three parameters organizations must manage when initiating continuous improvement or business process redesign.
Governments have employed a myriad of techniques and tools to improve their performance, including activity-based costing, performance budgeting, business process redesign, enterprise resource planning, customer relationship management, and e-commerce to name just a few.
They have seen that the use of technology, along with business process redesign, allows their chief executive officers to set new aspirations that were unthinkable just a few years ago.
Elements in this area to be discussed are business process redesign, implementation plans, leadership and engaging participants.
To facilitate business process redesign or to facilitate the implementation of technology, management must possess an accurate and complete understanding of the current business process and the true costs associated with it.
(2) General description of the situation, including business process model construction of the two situations within the case, identification of motivation for the business process redesign, and identification of the consequences of the business process redesign.
Business process redesign has been a long-time concern of information systems theorists and practitioners.
"The New Industrial Engineering: Information Technology and Business Process Redesign," Sloan Management Review, Summer 1990, PP.
Additional services from Sabre include maintenance and upgrades of its legacy systems, voice and data communications, Y2K assessment, as well as management consultancy work for business process redesign. Sabres will replace Aerolineas' airline systems with Sabre's passenger reservation system and its manual flight scheduling system with PC Airflite and introduce Airman O&D, the revenue management system, FOS, the flight operating system, Aircrews, the crew management system and Quasar, the passenger revenue accounting system.
This included developing a new business plan, a technology strategy, and a total business process redesign. To succeed on the Internet, we felt we had to change fundamentally the way we do business.

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