Integrated business planning (IBP) 

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Integrated business planning (IBP)

Organizations face an increasing challenge as they attempt to improve their performance and competitive position while adjusting to rapid changes in the economy, commodity prices and financial markets. An organization's planning process must provide its executives and management across the entire organization with the ability to integrate business planning and forecasting, which will result in better coordination in establishing plans consistent with corporate strategy. Integrated business planning (IBP) refers to the technologies, applications and processes of connecting the planning function across the enterprise to improve organizational alignment and financial performance. Once the overall company plan reflects this strategy, an integrated business planning process links strategic targets with tactical and operative planning on all hierarchy levels of the enterprise. By deploying a single model across the enterprise and leveraging the organization's information assets, corporate executives, business unit heads and planning managers use IBP to evaluate plans and activities based on the true economic impact of each consideration. All downstream plans get specific business targets, in order to ensure the adherence of strategic targets.

Business process modeling

Business model. A business model is a framework for creating economic, social, and/or other forms of value. The term business model' is thus used for a broad range of informal and formal descriptions to represent core aspects of a business, including purpose, offerings, strategies, infrastructure, organizational structures, trading practices, and operational processes and policies. The business model spells-out how a company makes money by specifying where it is positioned in the value chain.

Business process. A business process is a collection of related, structured activities or tasks that produce a specific service or product. There are three main types of business processes:

· Management processes, the processes that govern the operation of a system. Typical management processes include "Corporate governance" and "Strategic management".

· Operational processes, processes that constitute the core business and create the primary value stream. Typical operational processes are purchasing, manufacturing, marketing, and sales.

· Supporting processes, which support the core processes. Examples include accounting, recruitment, technical support.

Business process modeling (BPM). Business process modeling (BPM) in systems engineering and software engineering is the activity of representing processes of an enterprise, so that the current process may be analyzed and improved in the future. BPM is typically performed by business analysts and managers who are seeking to improve process efficiency and quality. The process improvements identified by BPM may or may not require information technology involvement, although that is a common driver for the need to model a business process, by creating a process master.

Business process modeling tools. Business process modeling tools provide business users with the ability to model their business processes, implement and execute those models, and refine the models based on as-executed data. As a result, business process modeling tools can provide transparency into business processes, as well as the centralization of corporate business process models and execution metrics.

Modeling and simulation. Modeling and simulation functionality allows for pre-execution "what-if" modeling and simulation. Post-execution optimization is available based on the analysis of actual as-performed metrics.

Business process integration. Usually a business model is created after conducting an interview, which is part of the business analysis process. The interview consists of a facilitator asking a series of questions to extract information about the subject business process. The interviewer is referred to as a facilitator to emphasize that it is the participants, not the facilitator, who provide the business process information. Although the facilitator should have some knowledge of the subject business process, but this is not as important as her mastery of a pragmatic and rigorous method interviewing business experts. The method is important because for most enterprises a team of facilitators is needed to collect information across the enterprise, and the findings of all the interviewers must be compiled and integrated once completed.

Business models are developed as defining either the current state of the process, in which case the final product is called the "as is" snapshot model, or a concept of what the process should become, resulting in a "to be" model. By comparing and contrasting "as is" and "to be" models the business analysts can determine if the existing business processes and information systems are sound and only need minor modifications, or if reengineering is required to correct problems or improve efficiency. Consequently, business process modeling and subsequent analysis can be used to fundamentally reshape the way an enterprise conducts its operations.

Business process reengineering. Business process reengineering (BPR) is an approach aiming at improvements by means of elevating efficiency and effectiveness of the processes that exist within and across organizations. The key to business process reengineering is for organizations to look at their business processes from a "clean slate" perspective and determine how they can best construct these processes to improve how they conduct business.

Business process reengineering (BPR) began as a private sector technique to help organizations fundamentally rethink how they do their work in order to dramatically improve customer service, cut operational costs, and become world-class competitors. A key stimulus for reengineering has been the continuing development and deployment of sophisticated information systems and networks. Leading organizations are becoming bolder in using this technology to support innovative business processes, rather than refining current ways of doing work.


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