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Simple Process Mapping

Why Process Mapping?
• Process mapping:
– Visually represents the work process
– Identifies problem areas and opportunities for process
– Provides a common understanding of the entire process and
specific roles and contributions of process participants.
– Before you can improve a process, you must understand it.
• Process maps are good for:
– Streamlining work activities and telling new people, as well as
internal and external customers, "what we do around here."
– Helping in the effort to reduce cycle time, avoid rework, eliminate
some inspections or quality control steps, and prevent errors.
• Process maps are a great problem solving tool
– Helps us determine what is the problem/what it is not

What is a Process?

A process converts
inputs into outputs 3
How to Create a Simple Process
Flow Diagram
• Determine the start and stop points
to your flow of process steps . The
stop point is typically near the
• Walk through the flow, writing down
the process steps as they exist now
(Rule of thumb: Pretend your are
the part). Make sure you use a verb
to describe the process step.
– You can be very general or very
• General: “Machine Part”
• Specific: “Turn part, grind outside
diameter, and deburr part”
• At a minimum, record the process
steps, decision points, and
transportation methods
• Once you have roughly mapped out
the process, make it more formal by
adding symbols.
• Once finished, sign and date the
flow diagram with a revision level.

What Can Be Included in a Simple
Process Flow Diagram
• Transportation methods
• Start and Stop points
• Decision points
• Inventory/Storage points
• How many operators at each process step
• Process parameters for each step: Cycle
time, throughput time, scrap rate, etc.
• Responsibilities for each step
Process Flow Diagram Symbols

Decision External Inventory/Storage

Activity Start/Stop
Point Transportation

Data Box

Push u/t

Material FTQ

Data box for recording

cycle time, first time
quality and other process
operating characteristics
Exercise for Process Map
• Take a critical operation in your work
place and map it with a simple process
flow diagram.

A Deployment Flow Chart (Swim
• Here a "department" or "agency"
dimension is added horizontally
along the top of the chart. You
may use individuals, groups,
departments, functions, etc. -
whatever kinds of 'units' play
major roles in the process.
• Draw vertical lines to separate the
functional boundaries.
• When the flow moves from one
function to another, a horizontal
line denotes this.
• Draw the sequence of activities
from top to bottom.
• Use the task and decision-making
symbols as before and always
connect symbols with arrows
indicating the direction of flow.

Exercise for Deployment Chart
• Convert your simple flow diagram into a
deployment chart

• Suppliers: The entities that provide whatever is worked on in the
process (information, forms, material). The supplier may be an
outside vendor or another division or a coworker (as an internal
• Input: The information or material provided by the supplier and used
by the process..
• Process: The steps used to convert inputs into outputs. (some
steps are value added and some are not value added)
• Output: The product, service or information being sent to the
customer. This is what the customer pays for. He/she wants
– With good quality
– Delivered on time
– At a competitive price
• Customers: The next step in the process, or the final (external)
How To Create a SIPOC Diagram
1. Create an area that will allow the team to S I P O C CR
post additions to the SIPOC diagram. This
could be:
• A transparency (shown with an
overhead projector) made of the
SIPOC template
• Flip charts with headings (S-I-P-O-C)
written on each
• Headings written on post-it notes
posted to a wall.
2. Begin with the process. Map it in four to five
general steps.
3. Identify the outputs of this process.
4. Identify the customers that will receive the
outputs of this process.
• You can add a sixth column and list the
customer’s requirements (CR) such as a
blueprint number, specification number,
quality goals, and delivery goals.
5. Identify the inputs required for the process
to function properly.
6. Identify the suppliers of the inputs that are
required by the process.

SIPOC Examples

SIPOC Diagram Exercise
• Take your simple process flow diagram
and use it to build a SIPOC diagram.

Other Mapping Techniques
• Value Stream Mapping: Every lean event
or initiative should start with a value
stream map (VSM). In addition to showing
the sequence of process steps, the map
helps identify areas of process waste.