An experimental study of process representation approaches and their impact on perceived modeling quality and redesign success

Azim Danesh (Department of Accounting and Management Information Systems, Grove College of Business, Shippensburg University of Pennsylvania, Shippensburg, Pennsylvania, USA)
Ned Kock (Department of MIS and Decision Science, Texas A&M International University, Laredo, Texas, USA)

Business Process Management Journal

ISSN: 1463-7154

Publication date: 1 December 2005



The purpose of research is to examine the communication optimization theory by comparing two business process representation approaches and related redesign guidelines through an experiment.


The experiment examined two process representation approaches involving 114 subjects. Each method gravitated around a different business process representation – one placed emphasis on business process activities and their sequencing, and the other on the web of communication interactions found in business processes.


The key finding was that an emphasis on a communication‐oriented view of processes seems to increase perceived modeling quality and redesign success.

Research limitations/implications

Data were collected from various information systems classes at a university. The participants were not redesign team members in an actual organizational redesign project. Future studies should focus on the characteristics of the designers.

Practical implications

The findings should allow managers and practitioners involved in operational‐level process redesign to acknowledge and focus on the flow of information rather than just the activities performed or at least determine a balance between these two approaches. Further, the information system developers and designers should be able to better align information systems design with business processes techniques. Using communication flow methodologies in the analysis stage should significantly help the design and the development processes.


This research was one of the first experimental studies to test the communication flow optimization theory and its effect on business process redesign.



Danesh, A. and Kock, N. (2005), "An experimental study of process representation approaches and their impact on perceived modeling quality and redesign success", Business Process Management Journal, Vol. 11 No. 6, pp. 724-735.

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Copyright © 2005, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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