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The definition under the Process Engineering tag:

For questions related to the (re-)design of business processes.

Process engineering (also called process systems engineering) focuses on the design, operation, control, and optimization of processes.

As there is a great deal of overlap among the engineering community and the PM community this tag does a disservice to those who practice the subset of chemical engineering that is Process Engineering.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Process_engineering

What is the process for tag removal?

  • For the record, it does sound like we got this tag wrong. Let's wait for a few others to weigh in. – jmort253 Aug 22 '14 at 2:45
  • Perhaps someone can propose a better definition for the tag. – Mark Phillips Aug 27 '14 at 21:18
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    Radically redefining the tag, mistags all instances where it was previously used. – Myles Horne Aug 27 '14 at 21:24
  • Software development involves design. I therefore demand that all other professions that use the word "design" stop doing so immediately, as it is likely to cause confusion among completely unrelated professions. :) – Todd A. Jacobs Sep 16 '14 at 13:06
  • I'm an engineer not a software designer. This exchange is for project management not software project management. Also if graphic designers started asking questions about designing packaging for software you might object to them using a Software Design tag. ;) – Myles Horne Sep 16 '14 at 16:52
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There are currently only 10 questions that are tagged "process engineering", so retagging should be fairly straightforward. However, we most likely wouldn't blacklist it unless it keeps reappearing after removal.

It's possible that this actually refers to business process re-engineering, as defined by Wikipedia:

Business process re-engineering is a business management strategy, originally pioneered in the early 1990s, focusing on the analysis and design of workflows and business processes within an organization.

If it would be more correct to retag these, anyone with at least 1000 reputation can edit the posts to fix the tags, and others with at least 150 reputation can suggest edits with a new tag.

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Thinking of this tag usage, I'd say that 'Process Engineering' would be used when one tries to improve a process that already exists or would need to define something that's not structured yet.

Going a step back, quoting 'Engineering definition' from Google (apologies, as a non-native English speaker I like to double check I'm not - at least - completely missing the point. Just a bit is ok :) ):

a field of study or activity concerned with modification or development in a particular area. "software engineering"

So, in this sense, 'process engineering' could make sense from a PM perspective as a tag to gather tickets related to process problems.

Being pragmatic, however, I believe the tag doesn't add much value as it stands. Some of the tagged postings could be tagged as , like THIS and THIS.

All in all, I support J's answer of going question by question and analyzing / suggesting tag changes, but I believe that 'process engineering' tag would make sense from a theoretical point of view for PMSE.

As a side note, it seems that process and methodology-related tags are being used without much 'care'. Maybe would worth to highlight the diffs between them on the tags Excerptions?

  • I think the issue is that "process engineering" is a phrase used in chemical engineering, and it seems to be the actual definition. I can see keeping the tag if "process engineering" has an official meaning in the PMBOK or some other project management body of knowledge. The question we will need to answer is this: Is this a correct term/phrase for project management? Hope this helps clarify! – jmort253 Aug 30 '14 at 0:25
  • @jmort253 Lots of businesses do process engineering, too. I get paid for it. Just because it means something else in some other field of study doesn't mean it's invalid for PMSE. – Todd A. Jacobs Sep 16 '14 at 13:04
  • @CodeGnome - If it's a thing, then so be it. My only concern is if it's just a term we pulled out of our hat in the early days, it might be worth re-examining. I admit this particular area isn't my area of expertise. – jmort253 Sep 17 '14 at 0:07
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The tag synopsis clearly states that this tag is for use as follows:

For questions related to the (re-)design of business processes.

Project management is all about processes, including the design and control of such. While the OP should feel free to suggest improvements to the tag that add clarity or differentiate between valid and invalid applications of the tag within the PMSE domain, removal or burnination of the tag would be inappropriate.

Just because a subset of users don't think of process engineering as a valid field of endeavor within (or associated with) project management doesn't make it so. Process engineering is a field of practice within many disciplines, including project management, business consulting, and information security.

Your mileage (and opinions) may vary.

  • Then maybe the tag should be "Process design" rather than "Process engineering". – Myles Horne Sep 16 '14 at 16:56
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    @MylesHorne Nope. It's called process engineering. If you want to tilt at that particular windmill, go ahead, but you won't change an entire industry just because you think they co-opted a term. – Todd A. Jacobs Sep 16 '14 at 21:25
  • @CodeGnome, do you think the tag wiki needs to be improved? Is there some official documentation we can point to that will help clear up anyone's confusion? – jmort253 Sep 17 '14 at 0:09
  • @jmort253 It can't hurt to expand it, or even symlink it to something more canonical. Gartner defines the term as "Business Process Re-engineering (BPR)," but every company I have personally ever worked for just calls it "process engineering." I don't object to improving the wiki, or creating some tag synonyms; I just don't want to discard a useful search term that is likely to guide people to useful content on PMSE. – Todd A. Jacobs Sep 17 '14 at 3:05
  • slrconsulting.com/job/… – Myles Horne Sep 18 '14 at 18:27

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