The Process Capability and Maturity Model is a useful framework for helping organisations to understand the “process journey”. It describes five, increasing, levels of capability:
– Quantitatively Managed
Each level can be described in terms of the characteristics you would expect to see in place, ranging from “Managing by heroics” at the Initial level, through to “Continuous Improvement” at the Optimising level.
The model describes the progression that an organisation would have to go through in order to embed process management that delivers true benefits. Sadly, many (most?) organisations will never get beyond the “Managed” level, largely because their senior managers don’t understand how they need to change their behaviour and act as Process Owners.
We talk about “crossing the chasm”, which means making the transition beyond the “Managed” level. It’s the step up from Silo/Departmental working to End-to-end Process/Whole Systems thinking.
The reality is that (probably) 80% of the effort is required to build capability and achieve the “Managed” level, for less than 20% of the benefits. Once across the chasm, very little extra effort is required, but this delivers 80% of the benefits (and these are sustainable at the “Optimising” level).
You’ll find more information and articles on our approach to helping organisations implement successful Process Management here.