Business Process Management (BUSI2710)
BUSI2710 is a new course in the undergraduate BCOM and BBA curriculum. The course was co-developed by myself and Dr. Furey, beginning in July 2010. The first sections of the course were taught in the fall semester of 2011. In that semester, I taught one on-campus section and the distance education section. The course is an introduction to business processes. Consistent with my stated teaching philosophy, it is based on experiential learning and students are required to use a number of software packages for course assignments.
Course Goals and Learning ObjectivesThe following goals and objectives are defined by the Faculty of Business Administration. This course is a reflection of those goals and objectives.
- Students that successfully complete this course will understand business processes and the role of technology in enabling and supporting them. (Goal)
- Our students will be able to identify, model, and evaluate the efficiency of an organization’s main business processes, as they relate to other functional areas, such as accounting, production, or marketing. (Objective 1)
- Our students will be able to improve and redesign a business process using IT and non- IT-based solutions. (Objective 2)
- Our students will be able to identify points of a business process where IT support can improve the overall process, be able to propose high-level requirements for suitable IT support, and assess the impact of the proposed IT on people and processes. (Objective 3)
Course Rationale and Description
Business processes are the fundamental ways of operating a business. They describe the steps that a business takes to achieve its goals and objectives. Some business processes will be very structured, e.g. warehouse management or accounting, others may not be, e.g. product engineering or marketing strategy creation. The effectiveness of business processes to desired business objectives is an operational issue that affects a company's bottom-line. Hence, it is important to manage business processes. This management encompasses activities such as process analysis, process definition, process modelling, process simulation, process implementation, process optimization, process mining, and process evaluation.
Structured business processes can be supported using software called a workflow management system. As the name implies, this software makes sure that work is allocated to individuals in the business, that information is routed to the individuals who need it, that the progress of work can be monitored, and that business decisions that are part of the business process happen on a timely basis.
Because individual steps in a business process require and produce pieces of information, e.g. about an invoice or an account, and typically require use of software systems for completion, there is a strong relationship between workflow management systems and other software in the business, e.g. accounting system, inventory management, etc. Business process and workflow management provides an integrated way of using these resources as part of doing business.
The students were required to reflect weekly on the course material and their learning. Many of the students chose to use the final reflection for feedback and general thoughts on the course itself. Overall, students found the course to be useful and relevant, and the critical comments are limited to specific details or particular topics of the course. The the comments indicate that the course is perceived as difficult but useful, which are both desirable attributes of a course. They also reflect my stated teaching philosophy of providing a challenging but very much relevant curriculum.
“ However, combined with the real-life examples used in the past couple of modules, I feel as though I have gained a better understanding of the software and how it can be useful in a business environment. This course was a struggle for me as it was very different from any course I have ever completed. That being said, I feel that I did learn a lot and have developed a greater appreciation for such software. ”
“ Now that I am at the end I realize that I certainly have learned a lot. I don't know if I'll find myself doing this kind of work explicitly in the future, but I am confident that the new knowledge will yield rewards in my own career day by day ... I have often felt through the course that the topics blend with many aspects of my current profession in developing computer software. I am also delighted to have some new tools and vocabulary that I hope will help facilitate new avenues of opportunity with the stakeholders that I deal with. Specifically with respect to how the systems I help develop can be better integrated into existing workflows and other business systems so as to fully realize their value. And this recent foray into the analysis component, I can already envision taking these techniques into my workplace for application to how we approach analyzing and understanding the work we do and how our systems perform. ”
“ First of all the material was interesting. I had zero idea what to expect when I registered, so every week was a delightful surprise. As I've mentioned many times before, the best thing regarding the material was how it so easily integrated into human resource management. Sometimes it is hard to picture how I will use knowledge from a class in the working world, but it's plain to see with this class, especially if I get into consulting. I've saved all my notes, readings, and tutorials so that hopefully I can continue to practice building models in my own time and get better at it. I think it would be a valuable skill to have when applying for HR, Organizational Development or Consulting jobs. ”
“ I'd like to take a minute here to thank you professor as well. This class was difficult, and everything was new material. I really felt that you supported us students and had a desire to see us succeed. You were very respectful of our questions and very approachable. This might seem like like it should be a given for a teacher, but it is actually a rarity. SO thank you professor! ”
“ Overall, this course has been interesting and I have learned a great deal of information that I did not know existed. ”
“ Overall, I think it was a good course, very dynamic and very demanding. I enjoyed the guidelines on how to manage process implementation change. ”
“ I really enjoyed this course because it showed me a different perspective at how businesses are run and how IT can be incorporated to improve the performance of an organisation. ”
“ I am very interested to see how these models and theory's will be used in real life situations. After working with a company who was struggling to change a process I think that using some model could have been very useful. One of the major bottlenecks of solving the problems the company faced was struggling to see the impact that a change would have on areas outside the one being altered. Had we had a model to show us all the inputs perhaps we would have been better able to evaluate potential outcomes. I feel as though the material taught in this course could be very useful to future endeavors in the workforce - thanks! ”
“ As we conclude this semester, I've decided that this is the hardest course I've taken while at MUN, simply because of the group work and technical material. However, I also feel like I've learned the most in this course in comparison to any other course I've taken. It was a field of business that I knew nothing about, had no interest in and thought was basically impossible. However, it really turned into a course with some potential of passing after asking a lot of questions and putting in some solid hours. ”
“ I find that the subject matter is fantastic. My mother is a department manager for a local company. When I discussed with her what we do in this class during the second or third week, the first thing she said was "that's what we're trying to do now." The theory behind re-engineering is definitely useful. ... All in all, i think this class is useful. ”
“ The instruction and class work in Business 2710 did an excellent job of teaching the different ways workflows could be modeled, notated and eventually analyzed. Given the intricate nature of the material, I found the course to be marked very strictly, which drove me to concentrate more on the subject area than I initially thought would be necessary. ”
“ The content became much more interesting when the assignments started and course became very easy to relate into the real world. I also noticed that the material that we discussed in class was very very relevant to other courses especially entrepreneurship and marketing. In general I thought this course was a pretty good course in terms of enjoyability. ... I appreciate your interest in the course Dr. Evermann and also the number of office hours that you made available for our group. Also allowing us to use the last few classes as an exam preparation is also a nice gesture. I feel my career path will not be with business information systems however I will not hesitate to take another class like this. ”
“ Overall I have found the topic to be fairly boring therefore I have little interest in the course. Although I do completely understand how necessary the topics we have covered are to run a business. I am sure I will encounter many times in which I will have to relate back to what I have learned in business 2710. ”
“ In conclusion, although this was not my favourite course, it was a good experience and I'd like to thank you for the time you put into it! ”
“ I want to thank you for teaching the course and spending many hours in your office providing feedback to our work, it shows that you care about your students and their progress in the course; even if we don't always get A's! ”
“ Its unbelievable how fast this semester has gone by! Overall I must admit this course has been one which I can actually relate to what i'm currently interested in & planning on doing in the future. Business processes are active in every business in some form, and in many cases making these more efficient truly benefits the business as a whole. Knowing what we've learned actually applies has made everything much easier to understand and focus on. ... Overall I can say this course has seemed to turn out alright. I can't say it's been my favourite, however it was informative and insightful on real aspects of the business world. Work-wise, I believe the assignments accurately assessed what we learned in the course, and were great motivation to truly understand the concepts. These reflections have been both a blessing and a curse, I love how they simply require an understanding to complete, however it's proven to be slightly difficult to complete every week. In the meantime, it's much nicer then having a larger weight placed on the final, or prior assignments. ”
“ I thought this course was going to be extremely hard and boring at the beginning of the course. Throughout the course I found the material really came together and I had a much easier time understanding as time went on. I want to thank you for your help with the course material, especially with YAWL. I found your help beneficial to my comprehension and ability to apply the material on my own. The ability for us to work in small groups in class was also essential to our success in this course as we had the opportunity to collaborate with other students who could help us if we didn't understand a certain aspect of the material. ”
“ While the course's content may be abstract at times, I did not realize how important and effective business process modelling and management was to businesses and organizations as a whole. When I return home for the christmas break, I fully intend to apply everything that I've learned to modelling and improving the various processes of the guitar shop I work at; just to see what i can learn, and hopefully improve. Thanks for the great experience with it overall! ”
“ I feel as if this course is used to weed out the Commerce students who would not be able to handle the business world. This course requires discipline in order to succeed which is required in order to be a business person. In addition I feel as though it helps in order to make Commerce students more critical of how and why they perform tasks. It allows us to examine how processes need to be fixed. I feel as if this course has a bad reputation, it may be one of the drier courses but it teaches us something that we don't generally think about on a daily basis. Instead of being a course about gaining factual information, it teaches us life long skills that we need in order to succeed. Through hands on work this information and skills are gained. Professor Everman, I would like to close with thanking your time, and for not complaining on the excessive amount of time I have spent asking you questions. ”
“ Overall, the course was an eye opener. I am more aware of processes that various business that i interact with are using and I am curious about how they work. ”
“ As our last reflection for the semester, the learning process during this semester has been quite a lot, we dealt with different topics and software and even though the courses were quite difficult and extensive in content. The content and assignments were very in depth and time consuming to make and analyze no matter theoretical parts or computer practices, but they were very informative and educational after all. At the end of B2710 course after analyzing the course material given and making the assignments, I could see the big picture how it fits the big picture in business process and how I could use some specific software possibly in my future career. So basically my acquired knowledge and experience during this semester is very extensive, I was very pleased to learn something about business processes by using distinctive process making software. ”
“ I really enjoyed this course, as it taught me many new things. I found the YAWL program to be very useful, but am looking forward to using it more often, as I believe that I am still not entirely familiar with it- especially with no instructions. Having you as our prof was wonderful. You provided us with all the materials, handouts, and notes that would help us get through this course with as little struggle as possible. It is quite clear that you really know your information regarding business processes. However, even though I did enjoy this course, it was oftentimes quite dry. Although, I cannot think of many ways to fix this problem, other than more frequent visits to the computer lab. ”
“ Thank you for the knowledge I have gained from you to help me in making a business the best it can be. ”
“ I can honestly say that this course taught me stuff that I have never really thought about before, and actually benefited me when thinking about how everything follows it's own process in operating and how each step is just as important. Thank you so much for this semester, you were always available when needed, and very approachable. I would definitely recommend you to someone who relies on a helpful prof! Happy Holidays!! ”
“ As the last reflection of the semester, I will use this as an opportunity to reflect on the entire semester. This course has grown on me a lot more than I thought it would. When I was first introduced to the course I thought that the material was going to be mostly inapplicable theories. I could not really see a necessity to have detailed business processes, and the time it would take to design, implement, and monitor a process I thought to be both a waste of time and resources. I could not see the potential for applying any of the material. The first assignment was a big wake up call to me. Up to this point I did not put as much time or effort into this class that was sufficient for me to have any level of success. This became apparent in the grade I received on the first assignment. After this, I began putting much more time and effort into the course. I started to look for ways that the material could serve real world functions as opposed to waiting for this to be apparent. I slowly realized that these tools in this class are only as useful as the user makes them. As I began to look at the material more critically I then could see the possibilities of applying it to the real business world. When the second assignment rolled around, I still was not a big believer in the whole implementation necessity. After reading and analyzing the pharmacy case study, the necessity for processes became apparent. Businesses need a standard way of doing things so that tasks are carried out as regularly and with consistency as much as possible. I took a large amount of interest in the second assignment and put a lot of time into it (it is not hard to do this when you find it interesting) and it paid off. ”
“ This week was the last week of lectures, and I can't believe how fast this semester has gone, although I must say this was not one of my favourite courses, but I came to learn how important business process is, and how important it is to keep improving business processes, which I knew all along but since I read articles on reegineering I actually learned more about it than I knew, and to be honest I became a little stressed about reegineering out in the feild, when I finsihes school, but since I learned this course the stress is eased and I feel more confident about going out in the "real world" in business. ”
“ We have learned a lot since the start of the year. From the core tools of the course Petri nets, YAWL, data mining, BPMN and EPC, to useful knowledge about the importance of the process owner and the organizations commitment to the processes being implemented. I can not help but notice processes i use in the real world in day to day life. From the cashier to getting ready for school in the morning. I could outlining a process on a napkin in a restaurant at lunch (maybe without using YAWL, BPMN or EPC notation) to see the future consequences of an action or decision I need to make at that time. Just viewing the problem with that mindset has shown to be advantageous. It has been a great semester and I will see you on Tuesday. ”
“ For the final reflection of the year, I thought I would reflect and summarize on the entire course. When I first signed up for this course, I did not know what it was going to cover. After the first few classes of the semester I was very confused and did not find the material to be of interest. I thought that processes and different workflow patterns were useless and not really used in daily activities. It was not until in later classes I started realizing how important these processes and workflow patterns were, and that they are used in daily activities in the workplace. With our first assignment that we were assigned, it was interesting to match all the enablers and enterprises with the article that we had to read. It opened up my mind so I could finally see that the work we are doing in class, actually relate to real jobs around the world. This assignment was also more of a wakeup call for me as well as I finally understand how hard it was to get a good mark, even though I was happy with my partner and I's mark compared to the rest of the class.
The second assignment that we did, incorporated most aspects of the course that we covered, including the different processes and YAWL. I understood the process that the pharmacy had and it was a good opportunity for me to use YAWL. All aspects of YAWL had to be covered, and I think I managed to cover the majority of them. ... I found this course overall to be quite interesting, because looking back I can see some of these examples that are used in today's world. For example the XML format I believe I have seen on my computer before, when it starts up. At my job I had in the summer we also had a process that we had to follow. We greeted customers, took their order, placed their order for them, got their food, brought the food to the table, and then later brought them their bill. If I was to make a YAWL model for that process I believe I could. I could add the and/or splits, and name the resources, etc. I learned that for a company to run efficient and be successful, they need a proper and effective process set in place. I also found it was very helpful in this course that you gave us students the opportunity to work in small groups almost every class. This helped me to interact with other students and understand the material more clearly, as we all shared our different comments and opinions. ”
“ Thinking back throughout the semester, the course was quite challenging and it was most definitely out of my comfort zone. I didn't have any problems with the professor; he's great at what he does. I found the course quite organized and the professor had great notes and handouts. ”
“ To finish, I cannot believe that we have our last class this week! I have found that the course has been very challenging and probably the hardest course I have taken so far mostly due to the dryness of some of the material. However, it has made me think of things that I have never thought of before and also has made me think of business processes in a new, more critical way. It has given me a whole new perspective on the importance of finding a process to carry out every day business to improve efficiency and even customer satisfaction. ”
“ As this is the last reflection of the semester I would just like to say that the course as a whole has been quite the experience. We covered a lot of material from PEMM framework to Process modelling, and I feel like although it has been difficult and not the most fun course I have ever done, I have learned a lot and I can appreciate the course. ”
“ To conclude my very last reflection of the semester I would like to reflect on the course in its entirety. Business 2710 was not one of my favourite courses of all time as I found the subject matter to be somewhat dry. However, I can appreciate the knowledge I have taken away from the course. I am positive that I now have a much better understanding of how business processes work. Although I cannot say I look forward to using YAWL again in the future, I can say that I look forward to learning more about implementing processes. I believe this course will definitely pose to be helpful in the real world. I would also like to take the time to thank-you for your help during the semester. I appreciate that you always replied to every email with answers that were very helpful. I cannot imagine teaching is always easy, but I am grateful that you were able to share your knowledge and intelligence. ”
“ Overall, I thought this course proved to be a great source of information when it came to understanding the importance of business processes. I have learned just how critical it is for an organization to frequently analyze and improve its processes. As such, business process improvement had a continuous presence throughout this course and I feel as if I have developed a good understanding of this topic. ... On a final note, I would like to say that I found these weekly reflections to be rather helpful in that it was a way to continuously keep up on the course material, as well as a way of determining if I understood what was taught each week. There were some weeks where I did not fully understand the material, which caused me to then do some further reading in order to be able to write the reflection. While there were some weeks where I wished the reflections would "just go awa", I realize just how helpful they were, and without them, I would not have the clarity of the course as I do now. Thank you. ”
“ I can honestly say that this course started out to be one of my least favourites. I thought that the reflections were pointless, a lot of the classes were dry, there was no point to the material being taught, having to buy articles was stupid, and we were graded unfairly on the assignment. Now, I have a total different perspective on this course and I can't believe I ever thought all of those things. I now think reflections are exciting, fun, and an excellent grade booster considering the difficulty of this course. As well, some of the classes were probably dry to me because I didn't understand the material being taught - therefore, I probably tuned out without even realizing. After going to the lab multiple times, working in groups on different exercises in class, and understanding the prof a little better, I find that our classes are all very different in ways that make you pay attention because of the diversity of what we are doing. I find as the semester went on, classes were more bearable and the prof became clearer on the things he was discussing in class. I now know that there is a point to the material and the title of the course ties it all in - implementing business processes for workplaces and also using many different workflows to help change these processes. .
Overall, you did a good job teaching the course and helping to prepare us for our final. You were able to fix any technical issues that occurred in the lab and offered as much help as you could with regards to the assignments. Very approachable and it definitely doesn't go unnoticed that you are willing to help others succeed and do better. Over the past few weeks, I found that I have been needing your guidance quite a bit and every time I did, you were always there to aid with the problems that I did have. As well, no matter if it was in the classroom setting or the lab, you always went around and talked to each group and put them on the right track. Your TA's were helpful whenever they were present in the room and if you do get to choose them, you should pick them again for next semester. While I did complain about a number of things throughout the semester about this course, I think that the good outweigh the bad and I would definitely recommend people to take this course with you. ”
“ However, this course has had it's ups and downs. Quite often I blamed the teacher for the dryness of the course but upon reading the material myself, I only realized that he made it slightly more interesting. I cannot say I am entirely fond of the workflow systems but I am certain that business processes and modeling plays an important part in business that is surely required in order to succeed. ”
“ I have to say that I also rather enjoyed these little wiki posts. At first I was annoyed; thinking that I'd rather just answer questions every week, that way I'd know if I was getting things right or not. However, now that I'm writing my last one, I can see how creating journal logs like this is so much more helpful! When answering questions, I honestly don't have to think too hard , I normally just have to find the material and rewrite it in my own words. However, with the journal entries, we really had to think about the material each week in order to be able to come up with a critical analysis and application to our lives. I think this causes students to become more engaged with the lessons. It is also a nice way for you to connect a bit with us I'm sure. It was also fun to read another student's post every now and then and see how others interpreted the same material. I now feel that more classes should use wiki pages and journals to engage their distance students. ”
“ It's too bad that I wasn't introduced to it until my final course. Having the ability to read other student's reflections on each of the modules helped me to further understand the learning objectives for the course. With my work schedule I did find it difficult to keep up with the weekly requirements but am happy to say that I didn't miss a week. ”
“ I actually cannot believe that this is the last reflection I will write for this course. When the course first began and reflections were mentioned, I didn't quite understand what they exactly meant and what kind of information they would require. I've never had to do this for a course before so it took a while to get into the routine. I have noticed however that my reflection grades have been improving for the most part since day 1. In my eyes, I view this as a huge positive factor because I am engaging more with the material and the course itself. I really enjoy doing these each week and I'm so glad they are part of the course - you should definitely keep them for next year, and encourage students to do them. It is an easy grade if you put the work into it obviously. ”
“ Since this is the last reflection I just wanted to say that this course was a lot more interesting than I thought it was going to be and it was definitely because of the way it was taught; so thank you for making what I thought was going to be a boring course fun! ”(Fall 2015)
“ It is hard to believe that we had already finished our class of Business 2710 this week. I think it is not easy to complete and I really spend a lot more time in it than other classes. And we really do a lot of on class practices and lab exercising this semester. But I think after this semester’s study, I really learn what is the business process. And it is not only a definition, but also about how to implement it to the real-life problem to increase the efficiency of the process. And by the practice of the computer lab, I learn how to use the different IT system to implement different process modeling and how to build an effective and efficiency model. I need to say even though it is a little bit harder to me at first time to write a “good” reflection and assignment, but I really learn the knowledge about the business process. So I want to thank Dr. Evermann for all of time and dedication to our class. ”(Winter 2015)
“ Thanks again to Dr. Evermann for all of your creative and hands on in-class examples throughout the semester. You not only managed to teach us the information, but also were able to keep us questioning: “How does this relate to the real world?” or “When will I ever use this information?”. In the end, it all boils down to what you plan to do with your career in the business field. Dependent upon that is how or when you will use the information from Modeling and Implementing Business Processes. ”(Winter 2015)
“ As the semester draws to an end, I really enjoyed this class however, some parts had me frustrated and almost pulling my hair out. I have taken a lot away from this class and I hope I would use the knowledge from this class in not only a business atmosphere but in my daily life. To conclude I really enjoyed this class. Thanks Mr. Evermann ”(Winter 2015)
“ Overall I learned a lot about different programs and information systems this semester, while it was extremely frustrating and I questioned why we were learning this material every class, I’ve come to realize that it is very relevant to our future endeavors. However, I do not think that business processes is my field of focus but I do appreciate that focus of study more than I did, and I’m glad to have been exposed to this as a student so I have some experience with business processes and how they are implemented. Thank you for your time and your efforts this semester, I can imagine it has been an interesting one for you as well as us students! ”(Winter 2015)
“ Well, the time has come to compose the last piece of writing before the final exam and perhaps to look back and reflect on the semester past. The scope of topics discussed here has been fairly broad. They ranged from core topics like Business Process Management, process reengineering and Petri nets, to relevant personal experiences like dinner table discussion about the healthcare system and my current employment situation. When it was first revealed that a requirement of this course was to create a piece of writing every week, I must admit I was not looking forward to it. The process though has been very helpful. It has forced me to keep up with the course material and also challenged me to find a way to connect to it on a personal level. By far the more important of those two reasons is to relate to the material. It's one thing to simply read it and to be present in class while it is being discussed, but its something else completely to actively participate and process that information - meaningful connections. I am proud of the work I have done to date. To have a body of work to look back on is very satisfying. Looking forward to my future, both as a student and employee, I feel like this course has been useful in helping me understand business in a broader context. In particular, I can't help but think of Michael Hammer's Process and Enterprise Model whenever I am reading about a business. I find myself trying to put the business into one of the stages of maturity in the framework. I am also more inclined to “think bigger” when it comes to business. Broad organizational process issues manifest themselves as symptoms that effect employees in their daily lives. Rather than focusing on the smaller issues themselves, like I would have previously, I am now thinking of large organizational changes that can solve these issues. If I can retain this knowledge moving forward, I will have gained some very important principles that will undoubtedly be useful some day. Overall, the course has been a challenge but not too overwhelming. Don't get me wrong - at times I was frustrated and didn't understand the material, but I managed to stay on top of things and I'm sure I will end up doing fine. I would like to extend my thanks to you, Jorg, for your effort and enthusiasm throughout the semester. You have a difficult challenge yourself, taking very dry and abstract material and trying to make it relevant and interesting. ”(Winter 2015)
“ After attending classes for roughly 13 weeks, attending lab sessions, and writing 11 reflections, I can say with confidence that I have learned a lot of new information and skills in this course. I'd like to thank Dr. Evermann, as well as my classmates for making it an enjoyable class, with lots of support from my peers and the professor. ”(Winter 2015)
“ I found this course quite enjoyable, especially as a lot of the learning was done through lab classes, which I believe we more helpful, and also more fun as I enjoy using technology so much. I found that through the different articles and cases discussed in class I was able to better understand what exactly consisted of a model and specifically, how to alter it to our needs. The notes provided for this course are straight forward and along with some examples we have done in class it is easy to grasp the materials. I will be honest and say I have not read the book, though I might for studying purposes. By doing this course I understand that everything has a process, even if we don't think of them as such. I understand the importance of a well structured process, specifically with regards of businesses and business operations (Such as the TaleofTwoInvoices we've discussed multiple times). ”(Winter 2015)
“ Overall, I found this course as one of the hardest I’ve ever taken as I had very little knowledge about processes in a company; and the YAWL engine, especially, has been hard for me to understand completely. Despite this, I’m happy I took this course because, after it, I realized that processes are one of the core competences for a business, especially nowadays that competence is very aggressive and technology and innovation are keys for the prosperity of an enterprise, an efficiency and effectiveness are “must haves”. I do not think I will end up working on designing processes or reengineering the structure of a company (although, you never know), but I think this course will help me a lot in the future, as I will definitely end up working on a company and it will be essential for me to understand the processes of the company, as well as how they could be improved and how my job could help the company improving them; because as a company, all units should be integrated into one big unit (the company), meaning that for all of us the final goal should be the same and we should communicate with the different units to work together into the main goal, for this, having some understanding of reengineering and processes is very helpful. ”(Winter 2015)
“ As the year winds down and I write this last reflection, it offers me an opportunity to look back on not only this past week, but the whole year as well. I came into this course with no prior knowledge of what this course was or what was even being taught, with only the course name to serve as reference. But upon completion of this course, I understand what business processes are and ways in which they can be improved. I also understand the value of this course offers as many businesses can be improved and it is often gone about in the wrong way. Through the help of YAWL and other workflow design programs, I have a pretty rudimentary understanding that can be applied to future process modelling. I also have the confidence to model some basic processes from the real world. I think this course is getting increasingly important as each year goes on because many companies don’t initially design their processes with all these principles in mind. They only realize there is an issue when it is almost too late and try and counteract these problems through employee addition. As we have seen through countless examples, from small businesses to large corporations, this is not the solution. As so many businesses are currently realizing these issues, I think that students with process design and the ability to fix the problems through reinvention will be highly sought after. Like I have mentioned in past reflections, any one of my jobs could benefit in varying degrees to having their processes redesigned. Be it with construction working, where task completion is linear, where almost all tasks need one thing to be complete before the next, then this process redesign may not necessary for a small company. But, even their head offices may avail to process reengineering. Also like I have mentioned, process redesigning is very useful in hospitals and universities, where admin person after admin person gets added to try and mitigate the problem. This course has enabled me to see the benefits of process design, redesign, and mining. This will be very beneficial to me in the future and is a topic I’d be interested in pursuing further. Thanks for your time and insight this semester. ”(Winter 2015)
“ This is the last reflection I am writing for this course and wished the course continued as I am enjoying to learn and work with various tools the course provided. I am also feeling accomplished as I learned YAWL, Petri nets, BPMN and EPC. I started feeling intellectual and also realizing that there is a lot more to learn in the process. This course was a complete different experience and such a journey was a great adventure. One important characteristic of this course worth praising was its organization and well laid out. The wiki page of this course provided all the details a student needed to perform well. Its systematic approach and organized modules avoided much frustration which is not all that easy in other courses. My only regret in this course is I wasn't as active as I am now in the beginning of the semester. I wished i did all the reflections as I am realizing now that it is really fun to express one's views and opinions about what he or she has learned or learning. I would personally express my gratitude to Prof. Dr Evermann for his cooperation and making this course such a fun and interesting learning experience. I am also aware that I annoyed him sometimes with too many questions because it's just interest me leaning more about the materials and I loved every bit of this course. ”(Winter 2015)
“ It’s hard to believe that there are only three classes remaining this semester. I’d like to thank Dr. Evermann for all of his time and dedication to our class this semester. Your lectures not only allow us to learn the required information, but keep us thinking – wondering how to relate what we learn in class to real life examples. They also ensure that we obtain the knowledge through the use of hands on examples and group work, as portrayed through the many in class examples this semester. I look forward to taking more of your classes in the future! - ”(Winter 2015)
“ Lastly seeing as this is the last of the reflection, I would just like to take a quick second to thank you, Dr. Evermann for all that you have taught myself and my peers throughout the duration of this course. I can only imagine what a lesson plan for this class must look like and that it must be challenging to teach such in-depth, and detailed material while also keeping it interesting and relatable for your students. I feel I have learned a heck of a lot throughout this course that I really never thought I would ever learn, and have enjoyed the challenging content along the way and look forward to applying these new skills in my future business courses. ”(Winter 2015)
“ Way back in January coming into this course, I had no idea what to expect, and did not have any previous back round experience with decision modeling, and what it was really all about. I came into this course with a positive attitude towards learning all the new aspects and concepts that this course had in store from me. Right from the start of the first few weeks of classes, I found myself instantly hooked on what we were going to be learning this semester in the class, from business process excellence, to Michael Hammer’s role of the process owner, I really was interested in learning more about these subjects, and how they really do apply in business process modeling. What I liked most about these first few week’s, was the tale of two invoices video. For some reason, it really stood out to me, and really helped me get a clear cut understanding of the process of invoicing, and how easily it is for companies to create poor performance, if they are not being as efficient as they should be. Moving forward through the next few weeks of classes, I gained knowledge in the areas of Petri nets, and workflow scenarios. Being in the computer lab and having a hands on experience learning all about and creating Petri nets, really helped aid me with getting a better understanding of it all, rather than just sitting in the class room and learning about them the traditional way. But none the less, the days that we did spend in the classroom discussing and going over power points that explain the material, I did find each power point presentation to be very well organized, and they always helped to provide a clear understanding of the topic being explained. As these last few weeks of classes are beginning to tie up, I can now say that I’ve learnt so much more new material compared to where I started back in January. YAWL was one concept though, that at first I felt pretty intimidated by, convincing myself I would never wrap my head around all the concepts of it. But, with more practice, and the excellent guidelines provided on each handout, I eventually achieved a much better understanding of YAWL, than I ever though I potentially could maintain. Out of all the classes that we have had this semester, and out of all my experiences I got from each, I can honestly say that I really enjoyed this course. Sure, there were times when the material that we were learning was a bit tricky, but with practice and patience, I soon enough always found myself more comfortable with it. To me, business process modeling is more than just the activity of just representing the process of an enterprise, but rather, taking that knowledge and applying it beyond the basics. If there is one overall lesson that I have learnt from this course, it would be to never take the lazy way out. One should always not only just explain, but also apply their knowledge within everything they do. I look forward to our last few classes, and what they might have left to teach us! ”(Winter 2015)