Process and Task Mining – What are they and how can enterprises use them?

With businesses increasingly looking to implement Intelligent Automation on a large and sustainable scale, many are now understanding that to achieve this, processes must be optimised. This is a very feasible objective if the correct technologies are applied and monitored.


These technologies, process and task mining, are two options that are quickly becoming key parts of large-scale automation projects. By analysing and extracting process data at great detail, process and task mining are changing the way business processes operate. They provide a detailed, clear and rounded picture of how the processes currently work and where changes can be made. 

What is Process Mining?

A key issue facing businesses when trying to apply Intelligent Automation at scale is identifying the details of their business processes and understanding where they can be improved. Many organisations now have some form of automation working to help their business. However, when trying to scale this automation up, it is not clear how to optimise these processes on a wider scale. That is where process mining comes in.

 

Process mining software analyses event and application data of key business processes to understand the flow and key steps undertaken to complete a specific process. Most of the mining tools on the market take this process data and present back an array of useful insights including variance, bottlenecks, failure demand, trends and so on. Businesses can then review these insights and make calculated decisions on which areas to make these processes and outcomes better. All of this helps to achieve the ultimate goal of increasing productivity to increase profits and improve customer experience and satisfaction. 


An example of process mining workflow (Ui Path)

Task Mining

As process mining works on the enterprise level processes, task mining aims to uncover and then analyse tasks that users of business processes undertake. Task Mining tools operate by collecting the actions of the people who are making the business processes happen, automatically detecting the systems that users are interacting with.

 

It normally operates on a user’s desktop and monitors and then analyses tasks that the user is undertaking. It captures user activity (clicks, scrolls, keystrokes, movement between applications) and combines this with screen captures, timestamping of events. Having this level of insight into users’ behaviours of processes brings to light more automation opportunities that could potentially be missed if it was only process mining that was used. 

Getting the best out of mining tools

Both process and task mining can individually provide great benefits to increase the value of a business’s automation investments. To reap the best benefits of these technologies, they must be viewed in this individual way as an element within a wider operation. Having this view of the mining solutions provides a clearer picture of how to combine them with intelligent automation tools such as RPA and chatbots etc.

 


It must be said that often enterprise-level processes are spread across multiple systems and data is not always stored in a standard / coherent structure. In these cases, the effort of extracting and transforming the data quality should not be underestimated. With said there is a massive opportunity with these mining tools to increase the overall operational efficiency and productivity and that can only be achieved by utilising this key data. 

For businesses on their automation journeys, taking this next step with process and task mining is crucial to expanding and moving their automation solutions to the next level. 

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