After being appointed IS manager at the Rotorua District Council, it became apparent to Charles Burns that business process mapping was becoming stuck inside work documents and not being re-used by council staff.
“It was basically getting lost. It was wasted, people were starting again,” he says.
So Burns went hunting for a tool that would store the processes in a database and enable them to be published to the council's intranet.
“I reviewed XSol and Mavim, both of which were being used by other Bay of Plenty Councils,” he says. “It was a tough call to make because both were a 95 to 98 percent fit. The decision was handed to the users, who preferred the look and feel of Mavim.”
Mavim is a Dutch company that entered the Australasian market in 2006. Its Mavim Rules product supports sustainable improvements in financial results by helping users continuously improve productivity through improved efficiency, knowledge management and business processes.
Typically it focuses on mapping processes, creating cross-functional overviews and transparency in data and information systems.
Burns says Rotorua was innovative in terms of implementing Mavim. “We established a virtual quality centre. Small New Zealand organisations don’t tend to have the resources for dedicated quality, so we created the virtual quality centre by linking those people who had those skills in addition to their other roles.
“We essentially established a standard for Mavim.”
He says they discovered huge problems at the council with ownership processes, particularly related to data. “Mavim has allowed us to assign ownership and regularly review it.
“From a business process perspective, it has allowed us to address risk such as data quality around key processes. It has also allowed us to address asset management where much of it crossed several functional boundaries.
“Our indent processes were so complex, no one knew how they worked end to end, and no one was taking ownership.”
Burns began implementing Mavim a year ago in the IS department as a business process service. “There was a high demand for it as we mapped and published the processes. Later, engineering and finance began to use it in hot spots.
“We are still in the rollout phase because we have needed to take time to understand the development of standards.”
There are 12 councils in the Bay of Plenty, all of whom use the same ERP suite, Ozone, a specialist financial and local government regulatory suite.
Burns says that one council had implemented XSol and another Mavim. “That highlighted that we were pretty much on our own.”
The 12 councils have formed a local authority shared services organisation.
Mavim New Zealand managing director Robin van der Breggen says shared services in Europe are relatively mature compared to the rest of the world.
“In the Netherlands, they have been successfully deployed by large Dutch multinationals such as Philips, Unilever, DHL, KPN (Dutch Telecom) and the Dutch public sector.
“Mavim’s strength lies in working in collaboration with firms that possess complementary capabilities.
“That means building a collaborative culture that delivers benefits from centralising and decentralising activities and processes, and ensuring that outcomes are delivered in the most cost-effective way.
“We help to quickly deploy and settle in new structures, systems and processes to ensure the benefits gained are sustainable.
“The challenges include improving control of outsourcing, strengthening the sharing of knowledge, creating organisational flexibility, creating transparency, and supporting new organisational cultures and business models.”
Mavim is a plug-in to SAP and, in Australasia, to Microsoft Dynamics.