Beyond Business Process Reengineering: Towards the Holonic Enterprise

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9780471950875: Beyond Business Process Reengineering: Towards the Holonic Enterprise

Internationally renowned experts, with worldwide consulting expertise, chart a dynamic new trend that promises to go beyond current thinking on BPR and virtual companies. Discusses the competitive advantages of holonic systems, demonstrating what enterprises must do to become viable holonic players. Includes a significant amount of international examples.

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From the Back Cover:

How is your business these days? Do the following sound familiar? Market share flat or falling? Margins being squeezed ever thinner? Increased competition from new players? Technology out-racing you? Customers wanting more than you can offer? In all businesses today the answer is ? yes! For many, the solution is to focus on their core business processes ? commonly known as Business Process Reengineering (BPR). Now some businesses have gone beyond BPR and are using holonic networks to respond to the rising challenges of business in the 1990s. Holonic networks give businesses the agility to rapidly change product and service capabilities to meet rapidly changing market demands, offering the following advantages:

  • leverage ? there is true synergy achieved by combining the best capabilities of many operations.
  • speed ? decision making is streamlined which shows up as improved time to market.
  • flexibility ? rapid change to product or service capabilities to match changing customer requirements.
  • fast growth and high profits ? improving customer responsiveness by 33% results in a growth rate of 300% and up to 500% more profit than competitors.
  • sustainable customers ? tough for competitors to wean them away.
  • reduced capital requirement ? shared costs and fuller use made of equipment.
  • quick failure recognition ? real time operation recognizes and then fixes failure.
In this book, the authors describe how holonic networks and the virtual companies within them have been implemented in businesses as diverse as Ford, Hewlett Packard, Benetton and R Griggs, the company that makes Doc Marten shoes. Beyond Business Process Reengineering provides a thought provoking and practical examination of business today. For everyone in business being pulled through competition, technological change and their own reengineering efforts, it provides a new and radical alternative to downsizing, restructuring, cost reduction and strategic repositioning.

From the Inside Flap:

Beyond Business Process Reengineering Towards the Holonic Enterprise Patrick McHugh, Giorgio Merli and William A. Wheeler III What is a holonic enterprise? A holonic network is a group of businesses that, acting in an integrated and organic manner, is able to configure itself to manage each business opportunity that a customer presents. Each business in the network provides a different process capability and is called a holon. Each configuration of process capabilities within the holonic network is called a virtual company. By combining the core competencies of many individual holons within the network each virtual company is more powerful and flexible than the participating members alone. Each business in a virtual company is chosen because of its excellence. They form a team where members do not negotiate cost; that has been predetermined by the holonic network’s pricing formula (each value adding step is worth a given percentage of the final sale price — which is decided by the market). All holons in the network agree to a set of design rules. This in turn allows for the flexible use of capability worldwide. Why "Beyond" BPR? The Holonic System is a natural extension of BPR — thus is beyond BPR. In holonic networks core business processes are not just optimized to provide BreakPoints in customer value, they are reengineered for every order! Holonic networks and the virtual companies that form within them are a practical operational response for all businesses whose customers seek customized products and services. These "prosumers" define the core business process performance which must be achieved by the holonic network. The core business processes in virtual companies stretch far beyond the boundaries of the individual holons and by definition they meet consumer demands for cost, quality, speed, innovation and service. Thus businesses in an holonic enterprise can leverage their customer relationships, maximize their margins and achieve superior business performance.

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Patrick McHugh, Giorgio Merli, William A. Wheeler
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