Predictive process analytics assumes greater importance in cloud computing scenarios. This is especially so, as processes are executed over the Internet and they are accessed by users from multiple locations with varying levels of bandwidth and connectivity.
It is important to find answers to all of the following questions:
• How well do these processes execute?
• What are the problems being experienced by users?
• What glitches can we expect to face in the future with these same processes in place?
• What needs to be done to ensure that the processes execute as desired?
Predictive process analysis uses statistical models in the analysis of how processes are executed and uses simulations to predict how the process will behave under different constraints. Since the exercise uses historical data, it is necessarily a post mortem exercise. The constraints used during the simulation exercise are locational constraints, time constraints, and process constraints that are derived from process data available with the organisation and recorded during the execution of the process.
Process analytics helps organisations improve process designs and reduce the latency of processes as they execute over the Internet. For instance, if deadlines are being missed due to execution of standard processes today, predictive analytics will predict possible future misses given the current speed of execution. This is because predictive process analytics can use ‘what if’ scenarios and future-state-scenarios to simulate business situations that may occur at some distant date in the future time. Organisations will be able to predict whether they need to change or improve their processes to meet future demands on the process or fine-tune the current process to compensate for any network latencies that may be occurring due to variations in Internet connectivity that is being experienced by its mobile users or branch offices.
Are predictive process analytical tools included in cloud service offerings today? The answer is not yet. The good news is that it will be. Cloud services that are first to provide their users with predictive process analysis tools will be able to corner a large share in the market. They will be able to distinguish themselves from the competition and help their users create processes that are cloud ready and resource efficient. The future of cloud computing lies in being able to predict how a process will perform when it is accessed from multiple locations and time zones by multiple users working with diverse devices.