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Defining Business Process Maturity. A Journey towards Excellence




  • G. POELS


Organisations are increasingly focusing on their business processes to excel. Since the journey towards process excellence is challenging, various authors have proposed a business process maturity model (BPMM) to gradually improve maturity and capability. Nonetheless, a comprehensive definition for BPMM, maturity and capability is missing. Moreover, the differences between maturity and capability are frequently neglected. Therefore, this study elaborates on the lacking foundation. In particular, a thorough literature study is conducted to address three gaps regarding the BPMM scope, terminology and design. It reveals six basic BPMM components within a business process lifecycle (scope gap): (1) modelling, (2) deployment, (3) optimisation, (4) management, (5) culture, and (6) structure. Their overall growth refers to maturity, whereas the growth of an individual component includes capability (terminology gap). To increase its usability, a BPMM gives guidance on both assessing and improving business processes (design gap).The findings allow clear communication about BPMMs, and new models based on the identified components. This unambiguous understanding helps to avoid confusion and inappropriate assumptions in the business process literature. Future research will further validate the definitions by comparing BPMMs.

Suggested Citation

  • A. Van Looy & M. De Backer & G. Poels, 2011. "Defining Business Process Maturity. A Journey towards Excellence," Working Papers of Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, Ghent University, Belgium 11/725, Ghent University, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration.
  • Handle: RePEc:rug:rugwps:11/725

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    Cited by:

    1. repec:prp:uppmos:978-961-7023-55-8 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Radosavljević Marija, 2015. "Process Orientation as a Basis for increasing supply chain Management Maturity," Economic Themes, De Gruyter Open, vol. 53(3), pages 398-414, September.
    3. Maciejczak, Mariusz, 2014. "Process Maturity Of Short Food Supply Chains," Journal of Central European Green Innovation, Károly Róbert University College, vol. 2(4).
    4. Ma³gorzata Okrêglicka & Monika Mynarzova & Radomir Kana, 2015. "Business Process Maturity In Small And Mediumsized Enterprises," Polish Journal of Management Studies, Czestochowa Technical University, Department of Management, vol. 12(1), pages 121-131, DEcember.


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