The Changing Process Mining Landscape
Process mining is becoming more mainstream in Europe. The list of larger organizations applying process is endless: Rabobank, Hypovereinsbank, Deutsche Telekom, Vodafone, Vanderlande BMW, Siemens, Fiat, Bosch, Edeka, Zalando, E-on, Uber, DB, Lufthansa, Granada City, AstraZenica, Medtronic, Deloitte, EY, PwC, KPMG, Dell, IBM, ServiceNow, etc.
There are over 35 process mining vendors. Hence, there are many possible candidates when selecting a process mining tool. In the first months of 2020, SAP acquired Signavio and IBM acquired myInvenio. These were the first bigger acquisitions in the field of process mining after UiPath acquired ProcessGold at the end of 2019. On June 2nd, 2021, Celonis raised $1 billion, increasing the valuation of this 10-year-old company to $11.1 billion. This makes Celonis the first German Decacorn, i.e., a startup valued at more than $10 billion. The acquisitions and valuations of the over 35 process mining vendors suggest that the market (finally) sees the potential of process mining. However, we are probably just at the beginning. Most experts estimate that less than 1% of the potential of process mining is being used. Despite the widespread use of process mining, many CEOs are still not aware of the capabilities of this technology.
Based on recent developments, two major (and interconnected) trends are visible:
- Process mining is increasingly embedded in larger ecosystems. Signavio and myInvenio will be part of the larger SAP and IBM ecosystems. ProcessGold was already embedded into the RPA software-stack of UiPath. ABBYY and Software AG are examples of companies with a broader portfolio that includes process mining. This trend will continue. Microsoft could embed PAFnow which is based on Microsoft’s PowerBI. At the same time, vendors like Mavim (a Dutch software solution provider that used to focus on enterprise modeling) embed PAFnow. In the future, it is hard to imagine vendors of Business Process Management (BPM) systems that do not incorporate process mining.
- The focus of process mining will shift from diagnostics to actions. Next to the traditional “backward-looking” forms of process mining, more “forward-looking and action-oriented” forms of process mining will emerge. The simple reason is that organizations do not pay for diagnostics, but will pay for improvements. Therefore, Celonis uses the term “Execution Management System” (EMS) to emphasize this direction. This shift requires that new forms of automation are adopted, e.g., low-code workflow automation and Robotic Process Automation (RPA). The goal is not to replace existing systems but to add a layer driven by process-mining insights. The software layer may take over repetitive work and takes actions when processes do not run as planned.
Independent of these trends, data extraction remains time-consuming. Moreover, organizations need to invest in core process mining capabilities. Filtered Directly-Follows-Graphs (DFGs) are still misinterpreted by stakeholders that lack basic process mining skills. Good tools and training remain crucial. Forward-looking and action-oriented forms of process mining only make sense if one first masters the traditional backward-looking forms of process mining.
- Alex Konrad. “Celonis Raises $1 Billion At $11 Billion Valuation, Making It New York’s —And Germany’s — Most Valuable Startup” Forbes, 2-6-2021. https://www.forbes.com/sites/alexkonrad/2021/06/02/celonis-process-mining-raises-at-11-billion-valuation/
- Larissa Holzki. „Bewertung übersteigt zehn Milliarden Dollar: Münchener Start-up Celonis ist erstes deutsches Decacorn“. Handelsblatt, 2-6-2011. https://www.handelsblatt.com/technik/it-internet/mega-finanzierungsrunde-bewertung-uebersteigt-zehn-milliarden-dollar-muenchener-start-up-celonis-ist-erstes-deutsches-decacorn/27247478.html
- Larissa Holzki. „Wie sich Geschäftsprozesse mit Hilfe von Algorithmen optimieren lassen“. Handelsblatt, 7-5-2011. https://www.handelsblatt.com/unternehmen/innovationweek/75-ideen/process-mining-wie-sich-geschaeftsprozesse-mit-hilfe-von-algorithmen-optimieren-lassen/27151714.html
- Christoph Kapalschinski and Christof Kerkmann. „Wir können Geschichte schreiben: SAP will Milliardenzukauf Signavio zum Zukunftskern machen“. Handelsblatt, 31-5-2011. https://www.handelsblatt.com/technik/it-internet/business-software-wir-koennen-geschichte-schreiben-sap-will-milliardenzukauf-signavio-zum-zukunftskern-machen/27236562.html
- Ingrid Lunden. “IBM acquires Italy’s myInvenio to integrate process mining directly into its suite of automation tools”. Techcrunch, 15-4-2021. https://techcrunch.com/2021/04/15/ibm-acquires-italys-myinvenio-to-integrate-process-mining-directly-into-its-suite-of-automation-tools/