Visually Measuring the Cumulative Intelligence of Your Processes
In my recent series — "How Smart Is your Business?" — I've outlined the four dimensions of the ISAA framework, enumerating the ways to measure the intelligence of your processes in terms of being: Intelligent, Social, Agile, and Autonomous. While ISAA is a good way to rate the cumulative intelligence of your processes, none of this means anything without a visual way of grokking that intelligence. You can't harness and guide this intelligence without having some great ways of visualizing the business outcomes, the alternatives towards creating better alternatives proactively, and the results of changes. In other words, "You can't manage what you can't measure and visualize."
I propose the following five levels of visualization that build on each other.
1. Push Visualization
Many of the visualizations are designed by others for specific roles. These are generally in the form of multi-panel dashboards and have only minor personalization and viewing options. These are good for "keeping your eye on the ball" for desired and known business outcomes. There are usually specific views for process owners, process managers, and the humans that are supporting the process. This is a typical visualization approach for a process.
2. Custom Subscribed Visualization
When individuals are able to assemble dashboard components/snippets and feeds, to meet their specific needs within an architecture and visualization pallet of their choosing, this is more like a subscription model. This allows for optimum performance as an individual process resource/operator, considering both local and end-to-end business outcomes. This approach also allows for dynamic changes and alternative views of a custom worker's workbench.
3. Warning and Notification
Even when events or exceptions occur, there are mechanisms for capturing the attention of crucial resources and process managers. It may be as simple as winking lights. When important preplanned events or business patterns occur, these mechanisms are aimed at asking for the human intervention of an operator or decision maker. Notification of unplanned patterns or events must also employ unique attention-capturing techniques and mechanisms.
4. Simulated Driven Visualization
Moving up to proactive visualization will require ways of showing the effects of changes in process actions and decisions surrounding possible actions. This is where scenario planning and visualizing outcome differences becomes essential for either manual or automatic adjustments in process behavior. This can be a separate sandbox with safe test data or real data under new scenarios without actual implementation. Scenarios can actively be preplanned and dynamically switched in and out, depending on process conditions and outcomes. Visualization of such actions needs to be quite interactive and dynamic.
The ultimate in interactive and dynamic business direction combines human resources, machine resources, multiple roles, multiple organizational units, and multiple partners in social interactions in a massively multiple online (MMO) gaming fashion, to reach desired outcomes in either a "training simulator" mode or in an actual real-time mode.
There are definite levels of visualization that processes can exercise reactively or proactively. Over the coming years we will need to learn to utilize various levels and layers of visualization.
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