Process owner

From CEOpedia | Management online

Process owner is a person who takes responsibility for reaching the process's objectives by managing and supervising its performance through Key Performance Indicators (KPI). Process owner is authorized to make any required changes in the particular process if it is necessary to realize the process objectives [1].

The role of process owner is being implemented in most of process oriented organizations. That person is managing and supervising particular aspects of the specific process, but it does not mean that all the people involved in performing the process creation are reporting to the process owner.

Being a process owner means taking responsibility for most steps of the given process from beginning to end by designing it - the way how it is carried out, its interactions and connections with other processes or ways of measuring the process efficiency. All of these aspects are ongoing tasks on each step of the process development.

Process owner responsibilities

Specific responsibilities of the process owner includes [2]:

  • Projecting strategy of the process which includes defining the mission and main objectives of the process and its tactics, procedures and instructions
  • Defining risks and opportunities on each stage of the process
  • Describing intention of the process in an easy to understand way
  • Defining Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and ways of measuring it
  • Monitoring process performances in relation to the KPIs and reporting it to senior management
  • Developing, implementing and synchronizing process improvements actions
  • Synchronizing interactions of the process with other processes in the organization
  • Requesting and making available necessary trainings, documentation, resources and information
  • Ensuring meeting requirements of the process customers
  • Negotiating process internal and external conflicts, identifying and resolving daily basis problems
  • Analysing and approving process changes and communicating it to the process users

Process owner competencies

Competencies of the process owner can be categorized into 3 main categories: related to tasks, related to people and related to thinking[3].

Among task related competencies we can distinguish:

  • Business Process Management competencies - analytical skills, knowledge of Business Process Management frameworks, improvement methodologies, process metrics monitoring and process design tools and technologies, economic knowledge,
  • Customer Focus - understanding customer expectations of the process and ability to adapt the process to these expectations,
  • Process Change Facilitation - changes management and presentation skills,
  • Process Governance - legal conditions of the process and risk mitigation activities.

People competencies are categorised as:

Thinking competencies refer to::

  • Systemic Thinking - understanding of associations and relationships of all the aspects forming the whole system,
  • Conceptual Strategic Thinking - thinking in the context of achieving goals.

Examples of Process owner

  • Project Manager: A project manager is a process owner who takes responsibility for managing and supervising a project from start to finish. They are responsible for planning, scheduling, budgeting, resource allocation and making sure that the project meets its goals and objectives.
  • Quality Manager: A quality manager is a process owner who is responsible for ensuring that the products and services delivered by an organization meet quality standards. They are responsible for implementing quality processes and procedures, monitoring quality performance, and identifying and resolving any issues.
  • Process Engineer: A process engineer is a process owner who is responsible for designing, developing, and implementing processes and systems to improve operational efficiency. They are responsible for analyzing existing processes, identifying areas of improvement, and developing and implementing new processes and systems.
  • Business Analyst: A business analyst is a process owner who is responsible for analyzing business processes, identifying and analyzing opportunities for improvement, and recommending solutions to improve efficiency and effectiveness. They are also responsible for developing documentation and training materials related to the process.

Advantages of Process owner

Process owner is a very important role in the organization as it leads to increased efficiency, improved performance, and cost savings. The following are some of the advantages of having a process owner:

  • Having a process owner ensures that the process is aligned with the company’s objectives and goals. They are able to identify any inefficiencies or flaws in the current process, and make the necessary changes to ensure that the process is running smoothly.
  • Process owners have the authority to make changes to the process and can take the initiative to make improvements. This results in increased productivity and better quality of work.
  • As process owners are actively engaged in the process, they can provide valuable insights into the process and can identify any potential problems before they arise.
  • Process owners also have the ability to monitor and track the progress of the process, ensuring that it is running as it should be. This helps to prevent any potential delays or issues from occurring.

Limitations of Process owner

The Process Owner is responsible for overseeing and managing the performance of the process and making necessary changes to ensure the process objectives are met. However, there are certain limitations to their role, including:

  • Limited Authority: Process Owners are not usually given full authority to make changes to a process, meaning they must consult with other team members and stakeholders before making decisions.
  • Lack of Resources: Process Owners often have limited resources to work with, such as budget and personnel, which can make it difficult to implement changes or improvements.
  • Limited Knowledge: Process Owners may not have the technical knowledge or know-how to implement certain changes, which can hinder the effectiveness of the process.
  • Pressure to Change: Process Owners can be pressured to make changes to a process to meet certain objectives, but may not be able to due to limited resources or lack of authority.
  • Cultural Resistance: Process Owners may also face resistance from other team members or stakeholders when trying to make changes, due to cultural differences or other reasons.

Other approaches related to Process owner

A Process Owner is responsible for managing and supervising the performance of processes, but there are other approaches related to the Process Owner. These include:

  • Process Governance: This approach focuses on establishing and managing a framework of processes and procedures, as well as ensuring that they are adhered to. This is typically done through the use of documentation, standard operating procedures, and guidelines.
  • Process Improvement: This approach focuses on reviewing existing processes and procedures in order to identify areas for improvement. This process typically involves analyzing processes for inefficiencies, developing new processes, and implementing changes to existing processes.
  • Process Monitoring: This approach involves monitoring process performance, identifying any issues, and taking corrective action. This includes tracking and analyzing KPIs, tracking process compliance, and ensuring that processes are meeting objectives.

In summary, Process Owners are responsible for managing and supervising the performance of processes, but there are other approaches related to the Process Owner such as process governance, process improvement, and process monitoring.


  1. M. Hrabal, D. Tuček 2018, p. 1-2
  2. K.A. Long 2012
  3. M. Garbutt, A. Rudman, L. Seymour 2017, p.127

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Author: Natalia Kobos