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Design it like Darwin - A value-based application of evolutionary algorithms for proper and unambiguous business process redesign

: Afflerbach, Patrick; Hohendorf, Martin; Manderscheid, Jonas


Information Systems Frontiers 19 (2017), No.5, pp.1101-1121
ISSN: 1387-3326
ISSN: 1572-9419
Journal Article
Fraunhofer FIT ()
evolutionary algorithms; genetic programming; Business Process Redesign; business process management; Computational Process Management; value-based business process management

Business process management (BPM) is an acknowledged source of corporate performance. Despite the mature body of knowledge, computational support is considered as a highly relevant research gap for redesigning business processes. Therefore, this paper applies Evolutionary Algorithms (EAs) that, on a conceptual level, mimic the BPM lifecycle - the most popular BPM approach - by incrementally improving the status quo and bridging the trade-off between maintaining well-performing design structures and continuously evolving new designs. Beginning with describing process elements and their characteristics in matrices to aggregate process information, the EA then processes this information and combines the elements to new designs. These designs are then assessed by a function from value-base d management. This economic paradigm reduces designs to their value contributions and facilitates an objective prioritization. Altogether, our triad of management science, BPM and information systems research results in a promising tool for process redesign and avoids subjective vagueness inherent to current redesign projects.