Did you know that 90% of the information transmitted to our brains is visual, and that visuals are processed 60,000 times faster than text? This statistic alone is a huge reason why business process mapping is such a critical step in understanding what your design firm needs in order for growth to happen!

This post covers the basics of business process mapping for interior designers, and how having your finger on the pulse of this will make many decisions within the business much easier collectively as a team. Welcome to business process mapping 101.

What is a business process?

Wikipedia defines a business process as a collection of related, structured activities or tasks by people or equipment in which a specific sequence produces a product or a service. In interior design, there are multiple business process maps you should consider. There is the lead process, design process, procurement process, and even post-project. Each of these play a critical role in how smoothly the business runs.

Process mapping may be visual shorthand for a visual illustration of the workflow, helping clarify the processes to individuals interested. It might go by different names, such as flowcharts, high-level process maps, document maps, and highly detailed process maps.

Business process mapping is a way to understand business processes.
It helps you organize the process into separate tasks and examine how they are interconnected.

Need for having a well-defined process:

  • Prioritize the tasks that are aligned to larger business goals and project goals
  • Optimize resource utilization within the team
  • Establish a clear communication path between people, processes, and systems
  • Organize day-to-day operations
  • Clarify accountability of roles
  • Standardize processes and systems
  • SOP’s established so that everyone is properly trained in these processes.

Why Should We Map Business Processes?

This is different for every design firm. It all depends on the goals of the firm, and where the firm will be in 5, 10 years. Formulating these processes as early on as possible will help set the firm up for success. It’s also important to note that it’s ok if you are a single designer (no team). You should still formulate your process so that when you do grow, you are able to already have these in place for your team. Here are some more reasons:

  1. Brings the whole team on the same page so there is no room for ambiguity.
  2. Eliminates bottlenecks, errors, and redundancies in the design process.
  3. Eliminates inefficiencies
  4. Helps build trust with your clients and trade pros
  5. Promotes internal collaboration
  6. Decreases waste by identifying extra gaps in the process for improvement.

Principles of Business Process Mapping

Most business processes are based on standard set of principles. The following principles must be followed while formulating your processes.

  • Define the scope of the project clearly, along with the boundaries, starting, and endpoints
  • Define each step clearly and with details pertaining to purpose, dependencies, and the person/people responsible.
  • Identify areas of growth when it comes to the process, clients communication with this process and internal communication.
  • Test the process and adjust accordingly. It’s OK to change this process, too!
  • Re-Design the process as needed with the client in mind first, second to the team and business goals.
  • Leverage technology and automations for better process outcomes.

Want to learn more about business process mapping, or need help?
Check out 19th&CO. Their team can help streamline this for your design firm!