As a financial guy, it’s always great to poke fun at HR and Supply Chain and the way that they think about the world. After all, HCM folks spend their lives in setup with a million grizzly little details that seem meaningless to managing an organization. And SCM, who can even understand their special brand of cost, item, order mumbo-jumbo that was only made to make financial heads swim. It’s ok! Because as the reporter for the organization, finance gets to feel their oats by insisting that everyone be categorized by units and accounts and we find a way to turn absolutely everything into a dollar or statistical value the we can use to ‘keep the street happy’.
The one place where our multiple languages come together is in business process. Each of our jobs touches individuals at different, possibly concurrent, points in time. The business itself started as a small set of business processes engineered to move products, information, etc. from someone that knew how to another who needed to know. As the idea grows, like an assembly line, new pieces are needed to scale the idea into practical use. Suddenly, hiring is as important as purchasing parts at the best price, and reporting the results is the same as allowing for the rollover of unused holiday at the end of the year.
Through business process we can see how our paths cross and the information that we carry on our separate paths. Make a map of what you do and look at the intersection points with other people. Each connects to another map. Stand back from the collection of maps, and you see general pathways. Take another few steps away and your looking at your companies fluidity. This is where operations can determine how smoothly things run and where the bottlenecks are.
It’s easy to get caught in our own little worlds, laughing at those around us who just don’t get how important our way of thinking is. My process is incredibly important, but is only a small part of the whole that makes up the business. Search for the intersections and find ways that your process can help the others you intersect with. Your small piece of optimized data, can turn another pathway into a super-highway when you consider that pathway as well.