Everyone agrees that, ultimately, business process management Is about management, but only a few companies have actually put all the pieces together and have implemented an effective process governance system. This paper describes how Boeing Airlift and Tanker Programs (A&T) changed itself from an organization in trouble to a world-class performer that has become one of the outstanding examples of the power of a comprehensive commitment to business process management through the organization of Its day-to-day management system around business processes.
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Boeing A&T Is a group wealth Boeing’s Air Force Systems business segment, which, In turn, is a part of Boeing’s Integrated Defense Systems (IDS) organization. (See Figure 1 . ) One of the primary products produced by Boeing A&T is the C-17 Globetrotters Ill Cargo Plane – a huge airplane capable of carrying a payload in excess of 32 tons. The primary customer of Boeing A&T is the U. S. Air Force. The program employs over 7,000 people distributed between facilities located at Long Beach, California; Macon, Georgia; Seattle, Washington; and SST.
Louis, Missouri. The Boeing Company Integrated Defense Systems Commercial Airplanes Connection by Boeing Boeing Capital Corporation Boeing Technology Alarm Force Systems Airlift and Tanker Programs C-17 Program 767 Tankers Program Derivative Airplane Programs Advanced A&T WHQL in Long Beach, CA Figure 1. The Overall Organization of the Boeing Company. 1 Copyright 2005 Pamela Garrets www. Uptrend’s. Com “Trends Senior Management’s Commitment The key to any serious process-based governance program is the support of senior management.
Senior executives at most companies are willing to support a wide variety of process improvement programs but are usually reluctant to provide the Indo of ongoing, in-depth commitment a company needs to really change the way the organization does business. Senior management commitment happened at Boeing A&T because the company does most of its work for a single client – the U. S. Air Force. In the early ass’s, that client was very upset with the work the C-17 Program was doing.
The program was over-budget and behind schedule, and the Air Force was threatening to purchase no additional aircraft. This threat focused senior management on the need to alter significantly the way the C-17 Program was managing its business. This management transition began with an executive Leadership Team that focused on how the C-17 Program might be changed to improve its management practices and products.
In essence, the C-17 Program, and, later, all of Boeing A&T, committed itself to implementing a management framework based on the Malcolm Baldrics National Quality Award criteria, which emphasize six areas, including leadership, strategic planning, customer focus, information management, human resources focus, and the management and integration of processes, in addition to results. The Baldrics criteria are embedded in a quality management program that is managed by the U.
S. Department of Commerce and that recognizes outstanding U. S. Companies with an annual Quality Award. [l] As part of the deployment of the Baldrics the C-17 Program’s focus on process management and integration spawned the Process-Based Management (IBM) processes and by assigning process management oversight responsibilities to senior executive process owners who, in turn, drive IBM downward by assigning process responsibilities to subordinate process owners.
Thus, a wide cross-section of the management structure within the C-17 Program, and now within Boeing A&T, has process management responsibilities. In the mid-ass’s, senior executives not only supported the organization’s transition to IBM but assumed leading roles, serving as training role models and participating in Joint reviews of processes with the Government customer. Today, ongoing, active commitment of senior executives continues as part of day-to-day process management.
Starting With a Vision and a Plan Integral to the C-17 Program’s successful deployment of not only the IBM approach but the overall implementation of the Malcolm Baldrics criteria was the implementation of a vision that focused on improving performance and quality as ell as on customer satisfaction. As the IBM approach was developed and deployed, the Air Force customer participated Jointly in the identification and management of key processes.
The C-17 Program’s process focus began when there was considerable interest in process reengineering but less emphasis on process management. Although there were some trials and errors along the way, the C-17 Program eventually created the IBM methodology to guide its ongoing efforts. Boeing A&T defines IBM as follows: Process-Based Management (IBM) is a management approach that defines an organization as a collection of processes focused on customer satisfaction and waste reduction by defining measures, and stabilizing and improving processes.
Boeing A&T goes on to define the characteristics of a Process- Based organization as one that ; ; Views business as a collection of processes Uses strategic plans to drive processes www. Uptrend’s. Com 2 Understands the precise relationship between processes and key business results and goals Focuses on key customer-driven processes Uses work teams to implement processes Uses process reports to determine the health of processes Manages by data Has the patience to work via processes Emphasizes sustainable improvements
Demands improvement in processes across the entire business Integrates processes possible Modeling the Company and Its Processes The Boeing C-17 Program management team began its process work by defining the program’s core processes and its major support or enabling processes and documenting them in an Enterprise Process Model. Over time, the processes were modified as necessary to adapt to the current Boeing A&T organization. Figure 2 provides an overview of the major processes identified in the A&T Enterprise Process Model. One can see from Figure 1 that the model allows each program within A&T to aileron its value chain.
The five tall arrows that run through the middle of the value chain are the five core processes. The two long arrows above and the one below include support processes that help lead or enable the core processes. We’ve highlighted one process in red on Figure 2 . This is the process for Process Management itself – owned by the Process Management Integration organization – that helps define, deploy, and monitor all the other processes. The process owners of the top-level core and support processes are called executive process owners.
Collectively, they make up the Integration Board at the A&T level and the Process Council at the C-17 level, both of which are tasked with overseeing the deployment and health of the entire IBM effort, in conjunction with the Process Management Integration group. When IBM was first established, the methodology was used by senior executives to define the core processes in the company. Then those executives deployed it in a top-down manner, to define suppresses and sub-suppresses (Figure 3). This effort continued until all of the processes were defined. 3
Boeing Airlift & Tanker Program: C-17 Program Value Chain Lead the Enterprise Ensure Organizational Effectiveness Perform Integrated Bus Financial Mange. Ensure Integration of Strategic Bus. & Functional Planning Ensure Quality & Mission Assurance Perform Sloganeering Insure Continuous Improvement Integrate & Deploy Processes & Procedures Communicate Positions & Directions Strengthen the Team Ensure Customer Satisfaction Provide Ethics Guidance Administer Contracts Manage Program Planning & Execution Minimize Program Risk Manage IOWA Performance Provide Integrated Performance Mange. (Cost & Schedule)
Support Products & Services Provide Supply Support Provide Field Services Provide Retrofit & Modification Services Provide Technical Data Provide Instructional Systems Data & Training Provide Integrated Support Planning & Management Provide System Support Analysis Provide Support Equipment Create, Acquire & Grow Business Integrate Product/Service Definition Define & Manage Product/Service Requirements Manage Suppliers Manage Material Rests Select Source Negotiate & Award Purchase Contracts Manage Supplier Performance Manage Supplier Quality Manage Supply Base Manage Gob Property Manage Inventory
Produce Product Create Opportunities & New Markets Acquire New Business Maintain/Grow Existing Business Plan & Control Product Service Design Concurrently Develop Product/ Service/Build- to/ Buy-to/Support Elements Verify & Validate Product/Service Define Production Plan Provide Parts, Supplies, SGF & Tools to Assembly Assemble & Deliver Product Verify Production Processes Provide Enabling Infrastructure Provide Financial Services Provide Human Resources Provide Communications Services Provide Legal Services Provide Safety, Health & Envy. Services Provide Security & Fire Protection Services
Provide Export/ Import Compliance Provide Integrated Information Systems & Services Provide Flight Operations Services Manage Facilities & Equipment Manage Nonproductive Procurement Figure 2. Boeing A&T Program’s Core and Support Processes (Enterprise Process A few complex processes – within Production and Engineering, for example – have been decomposed into as many as five levels of superposes. Ultimately, a total of slightly more than 300 processes have been identified. Each process has an owner. One individual can be the owner of more than one process, and some individuals own as many as six or seven processes.