In my earlier post “Can You Take Complexity Out of Your Business” I noted that the #1 challenge on CEOs minds is complexity; this according to IBM’s 2010 CEO study entitled “Capitalizing on Complexity”.
Reducing complexity is simpler said than done! Where should you start? We suggest you look at your core processes and the unstructured data that drives those processes to see if you can cut some fat out of complexity so to speak.
Wikipedia defines a business process as:
A collection of related, structured activities or tasks that produce a specific service or product (serve a particular goal) for customers (external and internal).
I’m sure this can be debated and no two businesses are similar, but for simplicity sake business processes can be broken down into two types: primary and supportive, here’s a simple definition
Primary Processes – tasks, activities and information exchange that result in a product or service that is received by an organization's external customer
Secondary Processes - tasks, activities and information exchange that are invisible to the external customer but essential to the effective management of the business
Now, core business processes have maximum impact on the success of your organization, as these processes deliver results that are directed towards specific and measurable business goals such as generating revenue or managing costs.
These are the business processes that an organization must excel at to remain competitive, in the industry - both now and in future. In other words these are the real value creating processes in the organization that customers and shareholders are concerned with. This is where you need to reduce complexity.
In our blog posts we try to simplify things, sometimes overly, in order to get to the point. So, here’s a simple definition of unstructured data:
Unstructured data consists of all information that is not in a database AND all of the physical paper documents in your organization.
Too often we see definitions for unstructured data that don’t include paper documents. We believe paper documents should be included in this definition.
Varying reports out there say that 80% of all corporate information is unstructured. What does this mean? Well, it’s potentially a cause for complexity especially if the information is in various formats and in various places.
What complicates things is this information should all be consolidated and under one “file” so to speak. Right now information is rapidly coming in to your organization in various formats and from various sources. It must be gathered together and properly tied to core processes so you have a 360 degree of your customers and suppliers information exchange and transactions.
In “Is There a Simple Way to Define Enterprise Content Management” we introduced the Yakidoo’s Follow the Content Process.
This diagram illustrates how unstructured data can be captured, organized and fed into key systems that you can use to better manage data, reduce complexity and improve overall productivity. We cover, at a high level, in our post “What is Capture and Where Should We Start”. In my next post I’m going to introduce two ways you can start reducing complexity in your business by using scanning technology.
Do you have any questions or insights on how to take complexity out of your business? Feel free to leave a comment below. Feel free call (905) 267-3949 or direct message me via Linkedin if you'd like to discuss this topic more.
Alfredo DeVanna is CTO of Yakidoo. He has over 10 years of international experience deploying over 80 critical information technology and enterprise content management systems. He is fluent in English and Spanish.