Quality information systems are vital to the success of the modern company. Everyone knows that IT has changed people’s lives, facilitated interactions between companies and customers, and streamlined internal processes.
But if not well managed, IT processes can consume noble resources. Given the need to apply tools to improve processes, value stream mapping (VSM) stands out as a technique.
Once the current map of the process is set, it is possible to cut down the waste by assessing which steps add value to the product & which do not.
What is Value Stream Mapping?
Value stream mapping is the lean tool used to visualize the flow of production or service accurately.
A fundamental part of the lean methodology, VSM demonstrates the flow of processes and information from source to delivery and finally to the customer.
It provides an overview of a product’s manufacturing process. That encompasses all stages, from obtaining the initial raw materials to the production of the final product.
It is a method which makes it possible to observe a process as a whole.
It is this overview, which then makes it possible to identify areas of problems or potential improvement in terms of the various flows.
VSM, thus, aims to map the flow of values, generally at the level of a product, or services. It brings together all the essential elements of the value stream and improving the whole process.
The proper implementation of VSM promotes a culture of continuous improvement in several sectors. These sectors include IT, finance, engineering, human resources, and marketing.
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Value Stream Mapping for IT Processes
When looking at some IT processes it is possible to quickly identify waste work such as unnecessary costs, overtime, delays, and dissatisfied users. Value stream mapping for IT Processes is more than just a set of tools and practices.
It is a profound behavioural and cultural transformation. And encourages everyone in the organization to think differently.
The value flow is the set of all actions involved in the life cycle of a product or service. It ranges from receipt of the order to the finished product in the hands of the customer.
In IT, it is a good practice to make a list of deliveries and constantly confirm them.
Benefits of Value Stream Mapping
- Facilitates the identification of key sector and company processes.
- Drastic reduction of waste found in the process.
- Promotes effective implementation of improvements.
- Helps to structure a system of performance indicators.
- Increases business sustainability levels.
- Quality improvement.
The integration between the elements present in the IT infrastructure also needs to be evaluated in the process mapping.
This is because the centralization of information and the flow of data are the keys to the organization, standardization and agility in the execution of activities and workflow.
Thus, identifying the sources of waste that occur during the entire process flow, creating actions to eliminate or minimize them is the main objective of VSM.
The value stream mapping tool proved to be a method with very positive results in the analysis of the productive flow and information within an organization.
If well-executed, this method can cover all processes that interface with the analyzed flow, helping in the diagnosis of waste.
After mapping the value stream of a given process, several problems can be encountered.
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