Business Process Re-Engineering
|Definition||Business process re-engineering (referred
to by consultants as BPR) is a simple term, but has a complex meaning
Basically BPR is when a company looks at the way they "do things".
But they do this "looking" in a very detailed and analytical way - usually because there is some pressure from the competitive environment or economic environment to sell their products and services (stuff) for a lower price, or make their stuff with more up-to-date features and enhanced capabilities as a result of some trend or demand from consumers.
|So if BPR just means analysing how
the company does stuff, or did stuff with some technology, why do they
have the word "re-engineering" in the term?
Because the word "Engineering" has a special meaning above and beyond simply looking at how to do things.
|Engineering||Engineering and technology are two
terms often confused as meaning the same thing but they aren't.
Engineering involves the application of "scientific, mathematical, economic, social, and practical knowledge, in order to design and build structures, machines, devices, systems, materials and processes" which allow humans to do something, something like lift a heavy stone a high height, or allow water to travel across an aqueduct for a city.
An example might be the following - technology is when you take a sharp edged stone to cut a piece of meat, engineering is when you use a sharp edged stone, under the weight of a heavy object (using the scientific principle of gravity) to then allow the edge to cut something very difficult that previously could not have been cut by the force of the human arm alone - which is an appreciation for the context that engineering is something you apply to "solve a problem".
|In the context of explaining and describing
the term "engineering" and "re-engineering", I (WTGR) borrowed heavily
on the wisdom and experience of my father Prof. W. George Richardson, who
taught Engineering History at Queen's for 35+ years.
Image of W.G.R. and W.T.G.R. "shooting the cuffs" and the wedding of my son
WGR also known as
|Re-Engineering||Given the explanation of the term
"engineering", "re-engineering" could then be expected to mean when you
do some engineering again such that the result can be improved - this is
In business the term "re-engineering"
has taken on a special definition of its own; a bit departed from the original
|Another component of BPR is the application
of contemporary IT Information Technology.
It is considered that when medium and large sized companies were growing, they didn't have certain technological advances (web based services, smart phones etc.).
|What are the things BPR deals with||
A big part of BPR is looking at MIS - Management Information Systems (see UTSC course MGTC11).
When consultants look at MIS to re-engineer
the company, the specific things they investigate are
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