Enterprises are increasingly organising their activities and IT support around key business processes. These processes and their interrelationships may be identified in a process architecture. Ould (2005) claims that the Riva method identifies the process architecture that an organisation should have, and asserts that organisations in the same business have the same process architecture. This assertion is not self-evidently true, and it has not been corroborated by the literature. But it is an important claim: if true, then process architectures could be reused either for new process development, or for appraising an organisation's existing architecture. We assessed the assertion by comparing the process architectures produced by applying Riva to two higher education institutions. The results partially support the view that an essential process architecture underpins higher education institutions, and also that for regulated business domains the optimal process architecture may be one based upon designed as well as essential business entities. The conclusion is that process architecture reuse, with its attendant potential savings of time and money, is worth investigating further, even though the extent to which the invariant assertion is testable may not be clear yet.
|International Journal of Organisational Design and Engineering
|Published - 2013