Supply Chain Process mapping: Few suggested guidelines

For may professionals who are just getting started into process consulting, the step of “mapping the process” is usually misunderstood to be the activity of drawing the process flows. Although the flows play an important role during any process mapping approach, alone they do not offer visibility to the Supply Chain network mechanisms. Supply Chain process mapping is much more than just flows.

Managing the process mapping environment requires three core primary and coordinated activities:

  • Interviewing people
  • Observing the process
  • Analyzing data

Based on my experience , these three core activities should follow some basic guidelines. Following these guidelines will ensure that your process mapping exercise captures all the relevant aspects of a process. Since these process maps, in most instances, will form the basis of some subsequent work, making sure that these guidelines are followed will ensure the quality of subsequent work as well.

Interviewing guidelines

  • One interview at a time
  • Open questions to get maximum amount of information (avoid yes-no approach)
  • Ongoing record and validation
  • Request complementary data
  • Draw preliminary flows during the interviewing process
  • Double check all information received

Observation guidelines

  • Information captured during initial interviews should be double checked before observation starts
  • Observe the process in different moments
  • Formulate open questions for process owners and teams
  • Request complementary data
  • Use observation to re validate preliminary flows drawn during interviews
  • Double-check observation inputs whenever required

Data Analysis principles

  • Plan before requesting data
  • Understand the data received and evaluate whether it is exactly what had been acquired
  • Understand the context and check data adherence to the process
  • Analyze data
  • Double check the analysis
  • Re validate flows previously drawn based on analysis outputs


Based on professional experience




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