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Improving Business Processes by Harvard Business School Press

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What Are Business Processes?

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As a manager, you probably hear extensive discussion of “business process improvement,” “process redesign,” and “business process reengineering” in your organization. You may wonder what, exactly, these terms mean.

First, it’s helpful to understand what business processes are. Below, we offer several useful explanations.

Inputs, activities, and outputs

Technically, a business process is the set of steps a business performs to create value for customers. A process consists of three basic components:

  • Inputs: They start the process. For example, if you’re building a bicycle, the inputs are the tires, wheels, nuts, bolts, ...

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