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CASE STUDY

Introducing and Embracing Operational Change at Geographically Dispersed Business Operations

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iGrafx helps drive standardization and global understanding of business processes at Barrick Gold

The Story

With operations located throughout the world and a vision to be the world’s best gold mining company, Barrick Gold Corporation understands the importance of continuously improving their business operations. Barrick established a Business Performance Group comprised of two complementary teams: Business Process Improvement (BPI) and Continuous Improvement (CI). In 2008, defining, standardizing and implementing business processes globally became a key corporate goal.

Standardizing and documenting functional and cross-functional business processes across its global operations was a major initiative. The BPI team took stock of existing process documentation and identified benefits to aligning processes in the functional stream and standardizing the structure and content of the documentation. Furthermore, they realized that the primary tools used to document and communicate business processes no longer met their needs as a global operation. Ultimately, iGrafx enabled Barrick to define and implement standardized global business processes.

An evaluation of business process analysis (BPA) tools ensued resulting in Barrick’s selection of iGrafx’s market leading, comprehensive BPA solution. In addition to iGrafx’s solution meeting all of Barrick’s requirements, the BPI team was particularly pleased with iGrafx’s ability to import pre-existing process documents and seamlessly link complementary policy and procedure documents with applicable process activities thereby leveraging investments made to date in process documentation. The BPI team quickly learned that iGrafx’s solution offers many more capabilities than the previous tool they were using.

Barrick Gold elected to utilize iGrafx’s Professional Services team to accelerate their implementation of iGrafx’s solution and implement unique customizations critical to their success. Leveraging a common process template, 140 pre-existing process documents were imported into iGrafx® FlowCharter® and appropriately aligned with key elements of Barrick’s enterprise business architecture documented within iGrafx® Enterprise Modeler®.

RACI relationships were defined in the context of Swimlane® diagrams, documented risks and related controls were aligned with applicable process activities, and complementary policy and procedure documents were collectively stored within iGrafx® Process Central® and seamlessly linked with relevant process activities.

Once this activity was complete, the BPI team collaborated with geographically dispersed cross-functional stakeholders to review and refine existing process diagrams and document missing processes applicable to Barrick’s global process improvement initiative. The cross-functional team leveraged iGrafx Process Central to centrally control versions of process diagrams as they evolved, relate elements of Barrick’s business architecture to process activities where appropriate, and facilitate an automated review and approval cycle.

Collectively, these activities produced a comprehensive, standardized process architecture seamlessly aligned with key elements of Barrick’s business architecture and linked to complementary documentation all residing in a single, central repository accessible to geographically dispersed cross-functional stakeholders via an Internet browser. This information coupled with the communication and collaboration features of iGrafx Process Central poised Barrick Gold for a successful global implementation of their program.

Accomplishments

  • Pre-existing process documentation easily uploaded into iGrafx
  • Process documentation standardized, with unified Barrick versioning across geographies
  • Procedures and policy documents seamlessly inter-related with relevant process activities
  • Processes and related activities aligned with known risks and related controls
  • Automated review and approval cycles administered with relevant stakeholders
  • Unified view of hierarchical and cross-functional processes provided to geographically dispersed stakeholders via secure Internet porta

The Benefits

All pre-established goals and objectives surrounding the iGrafx BPA solution were met. The BPI team succeeded in completing and documenting standardized business processes applicable to Barrick’s Business Process Improvement program. Management and dissemination of this information was efficiently and effectively facilitated through the use of iGrafx Process Central enhancing globally distributed, cross-functional stakeholders’ ability to collaborate. Disciplined version control of process documentation enabled key stakeholders to synchronously manage and control related business processes, particularly as change was introduced. Ease of access, collaboration, and standardization has led to the elimination of duplicate efforts across geographies and the ability for new hires to come up- to-speed more quickly in their respective roles. An acknowledged point of risk related to the departure of key people in whom process knowledge was solely embodied was mitigated. And, finally, the organization’s ability to introduce and embrace operational change while simultaneously minimizing and managing risk to business operations was greatly enhanced.

These benefits permit Barrick Gold to recoup their investment in iGrafx’s BPA solution within the first year. And, everyone acknowledges that they’ve only scratched the surface of possibilities. The Business Performance Group is eager to leverage iGrafx’s solution in continuous improvement initiatives aimed at further lowering costs and improving operational efficiency. Intent on being the world’s best gold mining company, Barrick Gold is bullish about the future and excited to predicate their pursuit of process excellence on iGrafx’s comprehensive BPA solution.

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