Business & Information Systems Engineering

Document Type

Research Paper


Promising to cope with increasing demand variety and uncertainty, flexibility in general and process flexibility in particular are becoming ever more desired corporate capabilities. During the last years, the business process management and the production/operations management communities have proposed numerous approaches that investigate how to valuate and determine an appropriate level of process flexibility. Most of these approaches are very restrictive regarding their application domain, neglect characteristics of the involved processes and outputs other than demand and capacity, and do not conduct a thorough economic analysis of process flexibility. Against this backdrop, the authors propose an optimization model that determines an appropriate level of process flexibility in line with the principles of valuebased business process management. The model includes demand uncertainty, variability, criticality, and similarity as process characteristics. The paper also reports on the insights gained from applying the optimization model to the coverage switching processes of an insurance broker pool company