Thought-Provoking Commentary for the Lawson Software Community
Lawson ProcessFlow:You own it. Use it.
September 14, 2006Posted by on
ProcessFlow. Most Lawson clients don’t understand it. You may not even realize that you own it. Or appreciate its potential.
If you are like many Lawson clients, ProcessFlow was installed as part of your initial setup and likely hasn’t been touched since. Maybe your implementation team set up some initial flows to approve requisitions. And you’ve never revisited the idea of utilizing Lawson’s ProcessFlow products to automate more of your business processes. If you were part of the Lawson sales cycle, you may remember ProcessFlow being a major selling point for ERP.
For example, you can use ProcessFlow to implement systemic consistencies, which are central to achieving regulatory and/or voluntary compliance, e.g. Sarbanes-Oxley. As opposed to the knee-jerk reaction of adding LAUA security, a tool limited to the separation of duty and data.
Your goal should be to become a process-driven-rather than function-driven-organization. The key, of course, is ProcessFlow. Every significant business action (e.g. adding an employee, releasing an invoice, etc.) which requires coordination across your organization should trigger a corresponding ProcessFlow. You can use Lawson-delivered triggers with Lawson applications, or create your own where need. It’s just a few lines of code that can be inserted into a user exit of the application code. So, it’s supportable and maintainable. If you’re also using Lawson Design Studio, you can also trigger ProcessFlow from there.
Once you become process-driven, you can use the metrics collected by ProcessFlow to determine your bottlenecks. And with automatic escalation, you can re-route flows that sit in someone’s inbasket too long.
Finally, if you’re using (or starting to look at) LSF 9.0, you’ll want to check out the new features that Lawson merged from BCI into ProcessFlow to create ProcessFlow Integrator 9.0. With these new capabilities, like SQL queries/updates, reading/writing files, etc., this is your opportunity to re-architect that kludgey mess of scheduled jobs/shell scripts/user tokens, etc. you probably call “integration”.
Think of the typical orchestration that is required when you hire a new employee. Why not use ProcessFlow Integrator to handle all the updates/notifications that needed for IT accounts, asset provisioning (i.e. new computer, desk, furniture, etc.) and security access, orientation/training, etc.
So, are you ready? Start driving your business with ProcessFlow, and you’ll wonder how you lived without it!