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Mapping Business Processes to Design Web Services

The UK’s Judicial Appointments Commission (JAC), an independent body within the Ministry of Justice, began a project to move the recruitment of judges online. During the discovery phase of the project we undertook a business process mapping exercise. Here's what happened...

Randal Whitmore 2016-07-19

The UK’s Judicial Appointments Commission (JAC), an independent body within the Ministry of Justice, began a project to move the recruitment of judges online. During the discovery phase of the project we undertook a business process mapping exercise. Here's what happened.

At the start of the project our consultants worked with the JAC team on a discovery and planning phase. The aim was to set the project up to succeed by mapping the current processes, and optimising them, so that the web application we were building could be designed to best support an efficient workflow.

Process-Mapping Workshops

We ran 10 separate process-mapping workshops with JAC staff who undertake the day to day work, and their managers.

Each workshop took a part of the process, and physically mapped it using post-it notes on rolls of wallpaper backing paper. This allowed the parts of the process to be moved around easily during discussions.

As is often the case, it emerged that different teams took slightly different approaches so we facilitated discussions to agree a unified approach, which was then reflected on the map.

Finally, we asked questions to prompt ideas for improving the process, and these were also discussed, with agreed changes being reflected on the map.

At the end of each workshop a short video was recorded in which the process map was shown and described, and these were then shown in “popcorn sessions” to the rest of the business to elicit feedback. The development team was also able to watch these mini videos, as part of their briefing, to quickly understand the process.

Outcomes

  • Although the intention was to simply map the process in order to prepare for developing a web application to support it, much more was achieved:
  • Inefficiencies in the offline process were identified and solutions developed
  • Staff members generated new ideas for improving their own ways of working
  • All staff gained visibility and understanding of parts of the process they didn’t normally interact with, improving communications
  • Every single staff member in the organisation had a part in designing the process the application would use

See the live project at jac.judiciary.gov.uk

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