Re-thinking Process Mapping For City Managers & CAOs’

Process mapping for all Local Government Leaders  is one of the most strategic ways to identify and represent a task from initiation to successful outcome, providing a visual glimpse into how tasks flow from beginning to completion. Process mapping is increasingly relied on by city managers, and indeed many other governing bodies around the world.

Business process mapping is used worldwide for all types of industries in managing all their workflows. The workflows may include maintaining consistent compliance in quality assurance systems, and perhaps most importantly, increasing productivity when servicing a consumer or community.

"A typical Local Government Swimlane map"

Process Mapping

Swimlane Maps separate the steps into lanes or channels according to who does the activity. If we have a process map where the participants have been identified by departmental colors, simply “sliding” the steps so those of the same color line up in a horizontal row, it becomes a Swimlane. 

Process Mapping for City Managers & CAOs'

Many Cities, Counties & Municipalities are starting to accept process mapping, and in some cases’ automation, for their city or county administrations. Unfortunately, the unexpected failure rates of many of these programs have started to become evident over the past few years.

In many cases, there is a severe lack of understanding between the executive leadership team and the ground staff that will ultimately use and benefits from these process workflows. Failure to understand the benefits means that senior management struggles with buy-in, so the city manager does not see the drivers or outcomes in support of the technology and can therefore miss out on the benefits

When Process Mapping Goes Wrong

Without a cohesive program, the resulting process mapping for city managers can be difficult for others to follow and visualize, even if it’s clear to the original creators. Inadequate process maps alienate those who could most benefit from the information.

When process mapping is ineffectual due to poorly designed, poorly communicated, or poorly executed plans, it can cause frustration with the executive leadership team and cause them to lose interest, or cause staff to ignore the map and revert back to unapproved procedures. A lack of momentum can cause the team to miss the opportunity to streamline and update processes while presenting a cohesive front, which can ultimately lead to a loss of funding.

Processing the Solution

Many city managers/CAOs’ begin process mapping, but are then left to work out the complexities on their own. Again, the lack of momentum can cause a negative view of the outcomes, when in fact there are simple factors that can help make process mapping for city managers a formidable tool. The process needs to be well-developed and supported by real evidence, and clearly communicated to the executive leadership team or the people on the ground who will outwork it.

It should be part of the city’s strategic goal to ensure the resulting process mapping is not only the right product, but offers the proper training, the right ongoing support, and is supported and understood from the council-elect to the city manager/CAO and all their senior staff.

Once a city manager recognizes what they must work with they need to take corrective actions, confirm they have the best application for their needs and look for solid services partners that will support the internal needs of the administration.

That’s where Governmental Frameworks comes in. With our hands-on assistance, tailored approach, ongoing support, and extensive experience – we can help city managers and other administrative staff to streamline their processes and create a highly functional system that improves productivity and achieves outcomes.

Talk to us today about how Governmental Frameworks can help you succeed.

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Cheriece Johnson

Taking the leap. Average to extraordinary.

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