Exercise 2.14 Consider the following organization.
RentIT is an equipment rental company providing a wide
range of construction equipment
on demand, all the way from minor equipment items such as water pumps and drillers, to
major equipment such as bulldozers, crawl dozers and cranes.
RentIT receives orders mainly from construction companies, with which it maintains longterm relations. To maintain these relations, sales representatives meet periodically with
existing customers to understand their upcoming demand for construction equipment, to
find ways of better satisfying their needs, and to negotiate special deals and discounts.
The main process at RentIT is the order-to-cash process, which starts when a new Purchase
Order (PO) is received via its information system. The PO specifies the equipment to be
rented and the rental period, among other details.
When a Purchase Order (PO) is received, a sales representative at RentIT checks the PO
and the availability of the equipment requested in the PO. This may lead to one of three
outcomes: (i) the PO is accepted; (ii) the PO is rejected and accordingly the customer is
informed and the case is closed; or (iii) a question is sent to the customer. In the latter case,
the customer should provide a response within 3 days. If the customer does not respond
within this time, a reminder is sent by RentIT's information system, and if the customer has
not responded 3 days after the reminder, the PO is canceled. When a customer responds to a
question, the sales rep can accept the PO, reject it, or ask another question to the customer;
in this latter case, the above 3-day delays for sending reminders and for canceling the PO
are applied again.
Once the PO has been accepted, RentIT's information system marks the corresponding
equipment item(s) as busy for the duration of the rental. The system also automatically
schedules the delivery and pick-up of the equipment from/to the warehouse where the
equipment is located. Deliveries and pick-ups are outsourced to an external logistics
A customer can send a request to cancel a PO, in which case the equipment is freed up
and the delivery is canceled. A cancelation request must be received before the equipment
is dispatched from RentIT's warehouse. Once the equipment has been dispatched (i.e., it
has left RentIT's warehouse), it is no longer possible to accept the customer's cancelation
request. On the due date, the logistics company picks up the equipment from RentIT's warehouse
and delivers it to the construction site. At the site, an engineer of the construction company
(called a site engineer) checks the equipment together with the logistics agent. In general
the delivery is accepted. Occasionally though, the site engineer rejects the delivery. There
can be two reasons for rejection: (i) because of an error of the customer or because the
customer changed its mind; or (ii) because of a defect in the delivered equipment or an
error attributable to RentIT. In the former case, an invoice equivalent to the cost of 1 day of
rental is sent to the customer and the payment procedure described below takes place. In the
latter case, the sales rep is alerted by RentIT's information system. The sales rep contacts
the customer immediately to negotiate an alternative arrangement. This may lead either to
cancelling the PO, or scheduling a new delivery as soon as possible.
Normally, the equipment is picked up on the end date indicated in the PO. It may happen
however that the customer asks for an extension to the deadline by sending an updated
purchase order (also known as a PO update). When a PO update asking for a deadline
extension request is received, the sales rep checks if it is possible to grant the extension. If
so, the deadline extension is recorded in RentIT's information system. If an extension is not
possible, the deadline remains unchanged. In both cases, the customer is informed.
Once the equipment has been picked up, RentIT issues an invoice for the amount indicated
in the latest version of the PO. Invoices should be paid 14 days after they are issued. If
payment has not been received within this time, a payment reminder is sent to the customer.
If no payment has been received 14 days after the invoice was sent, the invoice is put on
It may happen that the customer disagrees with an invoice. In this case, the sales rep contacts
the customer, and amends the invoice if required. This leads to an amended invoice being
issued. The customer has 14 days to pay after an amended invoice is issued (after which the
same process as above for payment reminder and putting into debt collection is followed).
When an invoice falls into debt collection, the sales rep tries to negotiate a special repayment
agreement with the customer. Generally, this leads to a repayment within a few weeks.
In very extreme cases where the debt is still outstanding after two months of the invoice
due date, the invoice is sold to a debt collection agency. The equipment that RentIT holds
is stored in one of several warehouses. Every piece of equipment undergoes periodic
maintenance. When an equipment is due for maintenance, a repairs and maintenance
supplier comes to pick it up (there are several such service suppliers for different types of
equipment). The same supplier delivers the equipment once the maintenance is completed.
The same applies when a piece of equipment breaks. In some cases, the equipment breaks
while it is located at a customer's premises. In this case, the repairs service supplier picks
up the broken equipment from the customer's site, or in some cases, it performs an on-site
repair. If the equipment becomes unavailable while it is in use by a customer, the sales rep
dispatches an alternative piece of equipment to the customer site. If this is not possible,
the original purchase order is updated accordingly, in such a way that the customer is only
billed for the days the equipment was in use. The sales rep might apply a special discount
in case an equipment breaks while in use.
RentIT needs to handle inbound invoices from repair service providers and logistics
providers in addition to invoices arising from indirect procurement. RentIT also needs to
make recurrent payments for equipment leasing. In order to optimize cash flow, RentIT
does not actually own the equipment it rents out but it rather sources it via equipment
lessors. The Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and his team are responsible for strategic
sourcing of equipment, which involves planning new equipment acquisitions, retirement
of older or broken equipment and negotiation of terms with the equipment lessors. The
CFO and his team are also responsible for financial planning and budgeting, financial
monitoring, approval of major expenses, and compilation of the quarterly and annual
financial reports. On the other hand, the team of the Chief Operations Officer (COO)
oversees the management of the warehouses, human resources, IT systems, office facilities,
and relations with logistics service providers and repairs and maintenance service suppliers.
Finally, the Sales and Marketing Director oversees all sales representatives, and together
with her team, she oversees all activities related to marketing, acquisition of new customers,
and strategic development of relations with the large customers.
Design a process architecture as follows:
1. Identify the end-to-end processes that should appear in the process landscape
2. Identify the business processes of each end-to-end process,
3. For each business process, identify its major management and support processes
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