Reengineering Organizational and Venturing Processes
In this chapter we will apply the concepts of reengineering at two levels in an innovative organization: (1) at the level of the overall organization and its major processes and (2) at the level of the venturing process and its associated organizations. Reengineering can be defined as: "the radical redesign of broad, crossfunctional business processes with the objective of order-of-magnitude performance gains, often with the aid of information technology."1 At the level of the overall organization we will primarily be discussing why and how to shift from a functional organization to a process organization.
The venturing process definitely meets the criteria in the reengineering definition for a "broad, cross-functional business process." There is probably no other process, except perhaps the strategic planning process, that is broader or more important. As noted in Chapter 2, a venture is any development project, whether it be for a new product, a new market, or a new production system. In this chapter, when we discuss the venturing process we are primarily discussing the development process for new products. We will be using the concept of integration to improve the venturing process.
Before beginning our discussion of reengineering the work of the overall organization, we must be sure we understand the terms used. The lowest level of work that we will discuss is the task. A task is specified work that achieves a specific goal. The next level is the operation. An operation is a group or