Stop Procrastinating! Document Your Critical Business Processes Before You Lose A Key Employee And Put Your Business At Risk

Written by on September 8, 2015 in Process Management with 0 Comments

Picture this Scenario

Your business or department is operating very smoothly. Jim knows exactly what to do to get the job done quickly and effectively. He knows how to answer customer complaints and issues easily. Your customers love him and you depend upon his expertise. In fact, he does his job so well he is the only one in the company who does this job. On his way home, Jim is involved in a car accident that will put him out of work for several weeks.

Car Accident

Instead of an accident, you could lose a key employee if they decide to leave your organization, are deployed in the military, experience a severe health issue, or simply decide to retire.

It’s easy to think that this can only happen in small organizations where there are only a few employees doing the work. But you would be wrong. It happens every day in Fortune 100 companies and mid-size organizations as well, especially if you have long-time employees who have been doing the same job for years.

Are you prepared?

Losing a key employee can seriously impact the heath of an organization unless you have taken steps to mitigate that risk. Here are three steps you can take to lessen the impact of losing a key employee.

Photo Credit: Katy Warner,Flickr

Photo Credit: Katy Warner,Flickr

Conduct A Process Inventory

This is a high-level activity whereby you capture the daily task activities, software being used, regulatory requirements and dependencies for each person in the organization. As you gather information and put it into a workflow document and spreadsheet, you will begin to see a bigger picture of your organization emerge. You can more easily identify areas where your company is at risk.


Identify and Prioritize Critical Business Processes

Using your Process Inventory, identify the critical business processes that are needed to keep your business running smoothly. This list can also be used in developing your business continuity and disaster recovery plans later on.

It’s impossible to document every process and doesn’t make financial sense to do so. Prioritize the list of tasks into High, Medium and Low activities. Every organization will have different priorities and requirements. If your business is highly regulated or you have embarked on a quality certification, your priorities will be dependent upon meeting those regulations.

Once you have your priorities, the next step is critical.

Make Documenting Processes A Priority

Documenting and updating processes will only happen in an organization if it is a management priority. Business Process Management (BPM) is a management discipline used to establish principles and practices to achieve organizational objectives. Effective management of business processes requires the participation of everyone in the organization, from executive management through operational staff and across all functions and roles.

When successfully implemented, Business Process Management becomes ingrained in the culture, defines the way business is conducted and reduces your Risk.


  • Losing a Key Employee can put your organization at risk.
  • Conduct a Process Inventory to identify the task activities of employees.
  • Identify and Prioritize your critical business processes.
  • Use Business Process Management principles and practices to make documenting your processes a priority.

For more information about how Business Process Management can reduce your Risk, contact us at 317-399-9905.

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