Business Process Improvement


In-person classes – 2 days / Virtual (Live online) and Anytime Learning – 4 sessions


Perhaps no other skill can yield such immediate results and payback than learning how to improve business processes. This course explores the need for a business process focus, the essential steps for process improvement, and the critical success factors for making the effort successful. It provides a practical framework for improving process and describes many tried and true process improvement concepts and techniques. Lastly, it provides valuable tips and techniques to introduce process changes effectively, to get the most from your process improvement effort. Presented in a methodology-neutral way, participants can easily apply the knowledge and skills to any environment, and use the techniques immediately upon leaving class.

Pre-requisites: Experience or training in modeling or mapping business processes. Our Business Process Modeling course satisfies this prerequisite.

Skill Level: Basic


Process analysts, business analysts, project managers, business process owners, general business staff, and anyone who needs the skills to improve and/or manage business processes.

CEUs: 1.4 ($75.00)

Certificate Programs:

  • Certificate in Business Process Management
  • Masters Certificate in Business Analysis


To help assimilate the tools and techniques learned, there is a mixture of individual and team exercises throughout the course. A lively role-play and case study help reinforce concepts learned. Students will need to be prepared for a high level of participation. Each participant will receive a comprehensive student guide complete with examples and workshop solutions.


Both our Traditional and Virtual classes use the same materials.

  • Comprehensive study guide with PowerPoint slides and detailed notes to serve as both an in-class guide and on-the-job reference.
  • Example case study running throughout the course.
  • A second workshop case study designed to give practice in applying business case skills.
  • Workshop solutions that serve as an example business case.
  • Class discussions and exercises to reinforce the information presented.


Business Process Improvement (BPI) Foundation

  • Discussion: Challenges of Inefficient or “Poor” Processes
  • Challenges of Improving Processes
  • Brief history of Process Improvement Movements
  • The Case for Business Process Improvement
    • Today’s Marketplace – What Has Changed?
    • Current Organizational Realities
  • Three types of Business Activity 
  • Formula for Process Improvement 
  • Discussion: What is the potential Impact of Process Improvements? What is the cost of Process Improvements?
  • Process Improvement Impact Illustrations
  • Justifying the Cost of Business Process Improvement
  • Cost of Quality Rule
  • Benefits of Process Improvement
  • Why Seek Process Standardization
  • Definition:  Precision versus Accuracy
  • Continuous Process Improvement
  • BPI Critical Success Factors (CSF’s)
  • Exercise
  • Framework for Business Process Management (BPM)
  • The Net Positive Effect of Applying BPM Layers
  • How BPI fits into BPM – Modeling, Analysis, Design, Transformation and Performance Measurement
    • Business Process Modeling Review
    • Business Process Analysis Review
    • Business Process Design Review
    • Business Process Transformation Review
    • Business Process Performance Management Review
  • Common Principles and Steps of Multiple PI Disciplines
  • Introduction to Case Study and Workshop


  • Steps to Business Process Improvement
  • What Makes a Good Problem Statement?  A Poor Problem Statement?
  • Problem Statements – Purpose and Elements
  • Problem Statements – Examples
  • Ineffective Problem Statements
  • Describe the Problem
  • Process Science
  • Process Components
  • General Examples – Problem Statements
  • Workshop


  • Discussion: What is analysis? What is measurement? How do they contribute to process improvement?
  • The Iterative Nature of Analysis and Metrics
  • Analysis and Metrics Enable Problem Spotting
  • Discussion: Why Measure?
  • Measurement Usage
  • Process Science? 
  • Benefits of measurements 
  • Workshop
  • Metrics/Measurements – Key Components (basic definitions, data, variation, data collection plan)
  • Definition of data types – attribute and variable
  • Understanding Variation
    • Sources of Variation
    • Types of Variation
    • Six Sigma Quality
  • Data – Why is it Necessary?
  • Data Collection – What and Why?
    • Three levels of Data Collection
    • Purpose of a Data Collection Plan
    • Existing versus New
    • Why Develop Data Collection Tools
    • General Examples – Checksheets, Sampling
  • Metrics components:  Understand, Measure, Display, and Manage
  • Metrics best practices – Balanced Scorecard, Dashboards
  • What do we measure to shed light on process effectiveness? 
  • Measurement considerations and techniques
  • Metrics - The Good
  • Metrics – The Bad
  • Workshop


  • An Analysis Analogy
  • A Case for Analysis - Why Analyze? 
  • It’s Typically Not a People Problem
  • Three Key areas of Analysis:  Data, Process and Root Cause
  • Analysis Key Concepts
  • Analysis Steps
    • Exploration
    • Generating Hypothesis
    • Verifying Root Cause(s)
  • Analysis Challenges
    • Roller Coaster-like Performance
    • Point of Diminishing Returns
    • Non-Linear Performance
    • Lack of Clarity
    • Hidden Motives
    • Examining Presuppositions
    • Understanding the “Would”, the “Could”, and the “Should”
    • The use of Causation and Correlation 
  • Three Lenses: People, Process, or Technology
  • Analysis Tools / Techniques
    • Process Analysis
    • Pareto Analysis 
    •  Scatter Diagrams, Run Charts, Histograms, Box Plots
    • “Rolled Throughput Yield” for a Given Process
    • Touch Time versus Elapsed Time for a Given Value Stream (Castle Steps)
  • Workshop

Business Process Design

  • A Case for Design
  • Process Design Principles
    • Power to the People
    • Static versus Dynamic Design
    • Designing Out Ambiguity
    • Lean Techniques Applied
    • One Page Procedures
    • Prototyping
  • Three Objectives of Process Design: Optimize Time, Optimize Quality, and Optimize Process Output Value
  • Time optimization Techniques
  • Exercise
  • Quality Optimization Techniques
  • Exercise
  • Value Optimization Techniques
  • Exercise
  • Common Design Flaws
  • Business Rules
  • Workshop

Transformation Processes

  • Case Study Discussion
  • Transformation Philosophies
  • Exercise
  • Identify and Address Obstacles
  • Organizational Change Management Curve
  • Motivation – What makes people tick? 
  • Change Tools and Methods
  • Results from BPI as Inputs to Projects and Requirements
  • Importance and Components of a Control Plan 
  • Consulting Tips: Best Ways to Recommend Change
  • Adapting presentation to audience
  • Use of an A3
  • Workshop

 This outline is subject to change.