BA 302 — Process Modeling
In Information Systems Analysis
& Design, Ned Kock (2007) presents the following
business-process case study on a car-rental company that practices
preemptive, predictive car maintenance:
"The business process example starts with a customer filing a complaint online regarding problems with a car that the customer supposedly rented in the past. The details of the complaint filed by the customer are stored in an online file of car rental complaints. The assistant manager of the rental company then downloads the information about the complaint using a Web-based computer system called RentalWizard, which automatically generates a complaint form to be used for internal processing of the complaint. The assistant manager then places that complaint form in a box for later processing, together with other complaint forms.
Once every week, the assistant manager of the rental company reviews each complaint form, using a manual containing several rules for reviewing complaints. Those rules had been devised so that certain complaints could be filtered out (e.g., complaints not related to car maintenance problems) before they progressed any further in the business process. Once the assistant manager is finished reviewing each complaint form, (s)he hand delivers a reviewed complaint form to the rental company's manager, briefly explaining why the complaint should proceed in the process.
The rental manager then hand-delivers the reviewed complaint form to the assistant maintenance manager, again briefly explaining why the complaint should be processed. The assistant maintenance manager is the main point of contact for the rental company's manager in the company's maintenance department, which is the organizational unit that processes reviewed customer complaints.
The assistant maintenance manager
then, upon receipt of a reviewed complaint form, places the form in a
box for processing by the quality control specialist. The quality
control specialist is an employee who formerly worked for a software
development company that owns and commercializes a computer system
called SmartFleet. The computer system cost the rental company
approximately $800,000. It incorporates artificial intelligence
algorithms that operate on predictive maintenance rules, which are both
used and updated by SmartFleet based on each new complaint processed
through the system and on details about previous maintenance
activities. The algorithms allow the SmartFleet system to create a
schedule of predictive maintenance activities (called 'jobs') that
reduces maintenance costs to a minimum while also reducing the
likelihood of future car problems occurring while the cars are with the
customers of the car rental company.
The schedule of predictive maintenance
jobs generated by SmartFleet is a printed set of pages (one page per
job), organized according to the order of execution prescribed by the
computer system. The quality control specialist then places those pages
in a box with other predictive maintenance jobs. The box is located at
the entrance of the workshop used by the maintenance department.
A team of mechanics then processes
each predictive maintenance job. Upon completion of each job, the
team enters the details about each completed job into a fleet
maintenance details file, using a data entry screen of the SmartFleet
Make an activity diagram of the above preventive car maintenance process (Diagram). Make sure that your activity diagram tracks all documents and document exchanges.