The approach is based on a three-dimensional view of the organization: organizational architecture, operational business processes and the chart of the organization. These dimensions are independent. Thus, an operational business process does not result from a decomposition of an element of the organizational architecture. It is transversal to it.
The organizational architecture is service and system-oriented. Its structure is composed of a 1st level organizational competencies that can be decomposed into 2nd level ones and so forth, until the Activity level, which can be decomposed into Tasks. Each Task is decomposed into Operations, Rules and Instructions.
The methodology created a technique that guides the decomposition of the organizational architecture into layers, based on the number and kind of Business Objects and their life cycle. The status of them correspond to control points of an organizational architecture that determines the definition of Activities and of KPIs.
This means that the subjectivity designing the organizational architecture is minimized. The number of layers of each 1st level organizational competence is defined according to that technique, being different for each one, according to its complexity.
An organizational competence is a system, including the resources, that is able to respond to a stimulus. It relates to the value chain of the business.
An operational business process corresponds to the typical concept of end-to-end process. It is a set of Operations and Rules, of several organizational competences, to respond to a stimulus.
The next picture illustrates the Mlearn organizational architecture, the operational business process and the chart together.
The organizational architecture is a governance model that expresses the organizational strategy. The operational business process is an improvement model and it is not suitable for governance purposes like to define a manager.
The next picture helps to understand the contribution of this organizational architecture to align the operational business processes, the objectives, the people assessment system, the information systems, the cost system, the operational risks and the training needs, for instance.
In this example, we have the three dimensions: logistic department (chart), the operational process Receiving materials at the warehouse; and the organizational competences Buying, Managing Materials and Managing warehouse (Organizational architecture).
Consider that the Buying manager negotiates with the supplier a discount for paying immediately. If in the warehouse the clerk delays, for some days, the validation of the material, the buying manager will lose the discount, due to this sharing of responsibility. So, the objective of this clerk for this task should be decomposed from the objectives of the buying manager and not from the ones of the logistic manager. Any delay on the Task Updating stock does not impact the buying objectives. It impacts the Managing Materials as nobody knows that new materials have been received. At last, the Task ranging material does not impact neither the buying nor the managing materials organizational competences. It impacts the warehouse in terms of damage of the materials and time to take them out.
At the boundaries of the organizational competences we can identify Operational Risk points. Each organizational competence is a cost centre and helps to identify the cost centre to register the cost of each task. The information requirements of each task should belong to the specification of the information system that supports each organizational competence, instead of the one that supports the logistic department. If so, the logistic software will support, for example, the task of validating material that should be integrated with the buying software. This is the reason why most softwares are not well specified, as typically the operational business process is the reference for interviewing the users. The training needs and the assessment of the clerk related to the task Validating material should be determined by the buying manager and not by the logistics manager.
The methodology associates a hat to the organizational competences and a jumper to the organizational units. Each employee typically has only one hat and several jumpers. The issue is that the employees are not aware neither of how many hats they have nor of their colour. The hat gives the decision scope.
This approach enables the identification of the virtual teams that ensure the delivery of services to respond to the stimuli. These are the effective teams of the organization, although they are not known. When someone changes the hat, performing a different task, that person is changing the team to which the person belongs and that is in charge of that task. So, everybody should know the hat one has when performing a task.
The next picture illustrates theses self-directed teams, as they correspond to a cost centre and should have enough autonomy to deliver their services.
It is easy to understand now that a design of an operational business process crosses the organizational architecture, as the next picture shows.
We can conclude that while the operational approach is able to give results related to time and cost reduction as well as to compliance, the strategic modeling contributes strongly to an effective coordination, responsiveness and strategic alignment.
The organizational architecture enables an effective decomposition of objectives, which is impossible by following the chart of the organization, as ilustrated in the next picture
This technique of decomposition enables the design of trees of issues, objectives and indicators, as in the following example.
This is a good aproach to define a score card or a BI system, avoiding the difficulty to understand the deviations and to identify the actions to do.
The three-dimension view of the organization helps to define the governance system and to define and decompose the objectives and indicators independently of the chart of the organization. In a second stage the responsibilities are defined and the goals negotiated. The operational business processes are only useful if you need to improve efficiency, efectiveness, flexibility, and compliance, including automatization.