Monday, December 17, 2012

Process Maps

Sometimes the Gorse Fox is surprised by the way other people approach solution design work. He has started to prepare to respond, on behalf of Starfleet, to a Government bid. The bid is for the replacement of some ageing software that supports a function that most would believe they have some visibility of, and therefore understand.

As Starfleet have been approached in the past, he decided to ask for some simple overview material from his colleagues. Whilst there were deep-dive component maps and data models - nobody could describe how this was used by the public, and where the staff within the department had to intervene.

Today, then, was spent creating some simple process maps that tried to describe the full context of the system that will be replaced. The Gorse Fox still has some work to do - but at least he is now beginning to comprehend how the Department works and how it impacts the public. Now he has some parameters that will educate his design; now he knows where changes will have positive or negative impacts on users.

Whenever GF gets involved in designing a major solution in a new industry, it is his objective to leave knowing as much about how the business works as the business itself... otherwise how can you design a solution properly and integrate it into the fabric of their business. He suspects that this is actually the missing link in so many designs - and why so many systems are so clunky.

1 comment:

The Gray Monk said...

Sounds emminently sensible to me. Oh, wait, you did say this was for a government department?

Understanding how the department actually does its business, impacts the public or even what it really does is NOT considered essential by the civil service ...