Data by itself has no meaning, no value, like ancient hieroglyphics you can’t read. But add context, a way to translate or understand the data, and suddenly meaningless information becomes knowledge. Apply that knowledge to a practical purpose, and then you have something truly special – intelligence. Today, Celonis announced a new innovation in process intelligence, the Process Intelligence Graph™ (PI Graph).
For more than a decade, companies have used Celonis technology to collect and analyze process data. Originally, looking at a single process (e.g., procurement) or object (e.g., purchase order) at a time. Now, thanks to the Object-Centric Data Model, all an organization’s process data can be unified into a single source of truth, a system-agnostic, digital twin.
With the twin (i.e., the data) in place, the next step is adding the context through the Celonis Process Knowledge Layer. Announced at the event, the Process Knowledge Layer is a new capability of the Celonis platform that enables customers to understand why their twin looks the way it does, where the value opportunities lie and how to deliver on them. This knowledge applied to real-world company data produces process intelligence – the PI Graph.
“The Process Intelligence Graph is the modern equivalent of the Rosetta stone - it’s the connective tissue that’s been missing in modern enterprises,” said Alex Rinke, co-CEO and co-founder of Celonis, in a press release. “By bringing together the building blocks of data, knowledge, and the power and scale of our ecosystem, our customers now have the foundation they need to make processes and entire value chains work for everyone. This level of cross-process, cross-system intelligence can only be achieved with the Celonis platform and the Process Intelligence Graph at its heart. The PI Graph enables technologies like AI and automation, feeding them the data they need for how processes actually run, contextualized with the knowledge of why they run the way they do, and how they can be improved.”
The Process Intelligence Graph was one of multiple innovations and new platform capabilities Celonis announced at Celosphere 2023, its annual user conference in Munich. During the two-day event, the company also debuted Process Copilot, Transformation Hub, Celonis Studio updates and a new Material Emissions App.
The Process Intelligence Graph is designed to help companies realize more value at greater speed. It enables new technologies, like artificial intelligence. And, it is the foundation to optimizing not just processes, but entire value chains.
During the keynote, Divya Krishnan, VP of product marketing at Celonis, described how the PI Graph speeds up value realization with Celonis, making it faster to extract transactional data, find the right use case, and actually capture value.
“First, you can model your process data faster. Deploy once and scale infinitely from there,” she said. “Next our process knowledge serves up recommended, prioritized opportunities for you to look at. Finally, you can use prebuilt apps to capture value fast.”
These apps, Krishnan said, are system agnostic and can be used on top of any system, whether it’s Infor, SAP, Oracle or even homegrown systems.
The PI Graph’s out-of-the-box definitions of objects and events means teams need less SQL knowledge to model process data and that the models can be reused for future processes, allowing customers to deploy once and scale infinitely. Additionally, the PI Graph can apply standardized, out-of-the-box process knowledge to customer data, providing recommended, prioritized opportunities.
The PI Graph helps organizations to:
Generate automated, actionable insights across processes, systems and departments
Identify and remove replicated processes faster
Build applications that are enhanced by the entire ecosystem
Deliver a better customer experience, backed by reduced emissions and more sustainable supply chains
Make Process Intelligence an imperative layer in their enterprise technology stack for AI to work most effectively
The PI Graph is also being constantly enriched and extended with external partner data, such as carrier information, and process knowledge on occurrences like high safety stocks impacting working capital; and machine learning technology and models that are unique to process mining on objects that can cause bottlenecks, such as duplicate invoices, late orders, or mismatched terms.
At the heart of the PI Graph are the Object-Centric Data Model and Process Knowledge Layer:
Object-Centric Data Model: Launched during Celonis World Tour 2023, the Object-Centric Data Model (OCDM) is an extensible data representation of an entire business. It contains object types, event types, object-to-object relationships, and event-to-object relationships, built and arranged to model what happens in the supported business processes. The OCDM is the core of an organization’s digital twin. The OCDM enables object-centric process mining innovations across the Celonis platform. For example, it powers the Process Explorer and End-to-End Lead Times App.
Process Knowledge Layer: The Celonis Process Knowledge Layer, announced at Celosphere 2023, acts as a centralized source of truth for process knowledge. It enables users to explore and maintain process knowledge from one place. It also automatically enriches data with additional knowledge powered by Machine Learning. This makes it easier to effectively drive insights and value realization with tools across the Celonis platform.
According to the July 2023 report, "Infusing Intelligence and Predictability with Digital Process Twins," from HFS Research and commissioned by Celonis and IBM Consulting, businesses are using process intelligence for greater operations visibility and efficiency. Of the 260 enterprise leaders surveyed, 88% expect increases in process intelligence investments despite the harsh economic climate. “In challenging times, large enterprises are doubling down on productivity gains across their operation,” the authors wrote.
During the keynote, Filippo Catalano, chief information and digitization officer and Reckitt, joined Rinke and Krishnan on stage to share how Reckitt is using Celonis and their plans for the future. Over the past two years the company has realized $31.5 million in value within Accounts Payable, Procurement and Order Management, addressing use cases like Payment Term Optimization and Touchless Orders.
Reckitt has set a target to realize $100 million in value by the end of the next fiscal year. The company plans to use Celonis for their Accounts Receivable and Inventory Management processes and deploy Celonis apps, such as the Open Credit Memo App and Shipping Emissions Reduction app.
“Every CIO wants to be able to transform their business in a more intelligent and sustainable way. Celonis is a true innovator and partner in delivering that value and living up to that promise,” said Daniel de Rooij, SVP digital transformation at Reckitt, in a press release. “It’s imperative to invest in the right foundations that enable emerging technologies, like AI. Celonis provides us with unique process intelligence that accomplishes this and fosters objective collaboration across the enterprise.”
Krishnan explained how the Celonis Platform, powered by the PI Graph, could help Reckitt achieve this goal.
First, Celonis captures and unifies data about Reckitt’s processes into a digital twin. Thanks to the Object-Centric Data Model, Celonis brings together all the objects (e.g., invoices, sales orders, materials, etc.) and events (e.g., invoice creation, changes to or cancellations of sales orders, etc.) in Reckitt’s core processes across all their different systems and shows how they interact.
Once the data’s modeled, this is where Celonis’ unique process knowledge, built up over thousands of deployments and including hundreds of process improvement opportunities, KPIs and strategic objectives, is applied through the Process Knowledge Layer.
“No other process mining technology has this volume of built-up process knowledge,” said Krishnan. “This process knowledge also enables Celonis to enrich the objects and events in your digital twin with additional automated insights generated by AI algorithms.”
With the digital twin built and process knowledge applied, an analyst within Reckitt’s Celonis Center of Excellence (CoE) can quickly identify and prioritize value opportunities. For example, using the new Celonis Process CoPilot, also announced at Celosphere 2023, they can identify and prioritize value opportunities in Reckitt’s cash conversion cycle.
When they access the CoPilot, the analyst can see the four processes that were brought into Celonis (Procure-to-Pay, Order-to-Cash, Production and Inventory Management.
Using the CoPilot’s intuitive chat interface, they can begin their analysis by asking for Reckitt’s current cash conversion cycle time.
Dynamically, Celonis shows them the three end-to-end processes that impact this metric - payables, receivables, and inventory and as when they double click into the calculation, Celonis shows her the three processes running in parallel and the calculation of DSO, DIO, and DPO.
With another click, the analyst can see recommended opportunities from Celonis. For each opportunity, Celonis provides a deeper dive and a recommendation of what to do next.
Looking at the DSO opportunity, the analyst can see that Celonis has found that 31% of invoices in North America are related to late deliveries. Using Process Explorer, they can see the upstream root cause behind this AR issue. Celonis recommends that she leverage a prebuilt app to address this use case.
In addition, Celonis has found that Reckitt has 85 customers that are also vendors and identified that these customers take longer to pay Reckitt than Reckitt does to pay them. By renegotiating payment terms to shorten on the AR side and lengthen on the AP side, Reckitt can realize improvements corresponding to a free cash flow benefit of $30M. With just a few clicks, the analyst can share this information with the CoE leadership to take action with the finance teams.
This type of cross-process, cross-system intelligence is only possible on the Celonis platform, powered by the Process Intelligence Graph.