If you don't ease your process debt, you'll never benefit fully from automation

February 08, 2020 | Phil FershtSarah Little

How many times do you have to scream at people to make them realize that they will never be successful tinkering with shiny new automation tech tools if that cannot design end-to-end processes that achieve their desired outcomes?  Automation tools can truly help make processes work effectively across disparate systems, once you have got rid of the awful process debt weighing down your organization. 

So what, exactly, is "process debt"?

When you are head to head with competitors, you must have your business processes designed on solid ground to accelerate the delivery of value – using technology and integrated automation to connect the dots.

Tech entrepreneur Ben Horowitz quoting Shaka Senghor, who he considers the CEO of a prison gang, in What You Do Is Who You Are, sums it all up perfectly... "Imagine you’re a developer and someone says, ‘Here’s some land, and here’s a million dollars. Could you build me a house on this land?’ So you build this guy’s dream home. And he moves in and then his family starts getting sick. Because what they didn’t tell you is that the land is toxic and it was a f***ing dump site …Nobody was digging into the dumpsite itself.” 

Net-net, technology isn’t necessarily the heart of making the connections from front to back – it’s making good choices about what you automate and having the business process in place to back it up. 

You can read more about our recent HFS Leadership Roundtable here, where we got deep into the weeds of process debt issues.

Posted in: Intelligent Automation

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