The Power of Process Engineering: A Conversation with Sam Drauschak
As a podcaster, I have the privilege of engaging with a variety of experts in different fields. In a recent episode, I had the pleasure of hosting Sam Drauschak, a passionate process engineer with a unique background in science and water and wastewater treatment. This conversation was a deep dive into the world of process engineering, its importance in business operations, and how it’s shaping the digital landscape.
The Journey of Sam Drauschak
Sam’s journey began with studying science, which eventually led him to the water and wastewater treatment industry. Here, he was introduced to the concept of process engineering. His career has since been dedicated to bringing process science into the digital context, particularly in the evolving world of digital services and software-as-a-service (SaaS).
The Importance of Process in Business Operations
During our conversation, I highlighted the importance of process in business operations, especially for small businesses. I’ve observed that many entrepreneurs in service-oriented industries, such as home services, often operate in an ad hoc manner due to a lack of defined processes. However, companies that have well-defined processes and leverage technology are outperforming those without.
Sam agreed with my observations and explained that even in non-tangible spaces, such as service industries, creating scalable and efficient processes is crucial. He emphasized the importance of writing down processes, even for solopreneurs, as it helps make them real and allows for better understanding and improvement.
The Challenges of Scaling a Business
When scaling a business, entrepreneurs often face challenges in teaching their processes to new team members. I mentioned that entrepreneurs may have intuitive steps in their processes that they skip over, making it difficult for others to replicate. Sam agreed and emphasized the need for entrepreneurs to understand their processes thoroughly.
We discussed the importance of comprehensive process documentation and the need for a common process language. Just as teaching the alphabet requires covering all 26 letters, in process improvement, it is crucial to understand where you are before moving forward.
The Power of Process Improvement
I shared my experience with process improvement in a large regional bank, where we whiteboarded every process and eliminated any that didn’t add value. This resulted in $52 million of bottom-line results in one year. I highlighted the cumulative effect of inefficient processes over time and the need to constantly refine and improve.
Sam added that process improvement is a vast field that can bring significant value to businesses. He explained that most corporate processes are only about 5% value-producing, with the remaining 95% being waste. By focusing on processes and having a mindset of continuous improvement, businesses can increase productivity and reduce costs.
Introducing Trubel: A Solution for Process Documentation
Sam introduced his company, Trubel, which has developed a mapping language and software solution to address the challenge of standardizing process documentation and creating a common process language. The goal is to provide a consistent perspective and enable comparability of process data across businesses, facilitating a true database and conversation about process improvement.
The Importance of a Good Process Diagram
Sam emphasized the importance of structuring a good process diagram that can be easily understood and utilized by others. He explained that the key to creating a successful process diagram lies in incorporating the five Ws: where, when, what, who, and why. These elements provide the necessary context and orientation for readers to understand the process.
The Role of Process Documentation in Software Development
I shared my experience working with a software development company, emphasizing the need for capturing and documenting business requirements and the importance of tangible deliverables throughout the development process. I argued that customers expect a structured and reliable process, and companies that fail to provide this will struggle to remain competitive.
The Future of Process Mapping
Sam discussed the upcoming release of their process mapping product. This product aims to provide a structured way to diagram processes, eliminating the need for messy whiteboards and tedious formatting. He believes that this product is the foundation of automation and consulting for small and medium businesses, as it allows them to have a command of their own processes and delegate tasks effectively.
The Power of Delegation and Automation
I emphasized the importance of documenting and automating repetitive tasks in order to free up time and energy for other aspects of the business. I encouraged entrepreneurs to delegate or automate these tasks to improve efficiency and focus on more strategic activities.
Sam agreed, stating that process documentation, analysis, and design are critical for smaller companies and entrepreneurs. Without a mastery of these skills, businesses will struggle to grow. He highlighted the need to communicate processes effectively in order to delegate or automate them.
In conclusion, our conversation underscored the significance of process documentation, automation, and delegation for business growth and efficiency. Sam provided his contact information for those interested in learning more about their process mapping tool and getting involved in their early tribe. I wrapped up the episode, thanking the listeners for their time and reminding them to check out the video version of the show on YouTube.
Sam Drauschak is the Co-founder and Chief Process Scientist at Truvle, whose mission is to assist businesses in reducing wasteful activity by providing them with innovative tools, software and expert content. With over a decade of experience in management consulting, Sam has worked with companies in financial services, resources, legal services, media, and digital services to simplify and improve their operations using business science fundamentals.
He is the author of Becoming A Conscious Business, a book that explores the efficiency of biological systems and how to apply them to modern businesses. Leading his team at Truvle, Sam helps organizations achieve maximum efficiency in business processes and energy flow. Samuel has also developed the Truvle Mapping Language (TML), a universal process mapping language adopted as the standard for multiple large enterprises globally.
Contact Sam at https://www.truvle.com/
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