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Process Mining
Process Mining is deprecated with Appian 24.2 and will no longer be available in an upcoming release.

Instead, we encourage customers to use Process HQ to explore and analyze business processes and data.

As more and more work is digitized, business processes can balloon into unmanageable complexity. Not only are the steps numerous and interrelated, but the reality of your process execution is also probably much different from what you'd expect. Planned activities may occur out of order, get skipped altogether, or create significant bottlenecks that are hard to observe. This is where process mining can help.

Appian's process mining capabilities rapidly enable you to gain insights into your processes by closing the gap between how you think business processes occur and how they actually occur.

Process mining can help you solve this challenge by:

  • Analyzing your processes so you know what people and systems are doing and when.
  • Determining where and why processes deviated from the expected flow.
  • Reducing the manual effort it takes to analyze trends and think up solutions.

About process mining

Process mining is designed to help organizations discover, monitor, and improve business processes. This approach comes from the fields of process management and data science and leverages tools like machine learning and artificial intelligence. Although this sounds like a high-tech approach, we've made it low-code so you can easily manage your business processes in a familiar Appian environment.

How does it work?

Process mining makes it easy to discover new insights into your processes and take actions to improve them. You don't need a Ph.D. in statistics or data science to get started.

For example, your IT systems likely track process activities, including when they happen, by whom, and other characteristics. This data can include information about when an order is received, product delivered, customer contacted, payment made, and more. Rather than manually try to organize, interpret, analyze, and visualize this data, process mining does it for you by utilizing machine learning and artificial intelligence.

Once you have access to these data sets, you're ready to start. Although Appian offers process mining functionality, you aren't restricted to mine only Appian processes. Your process data can come from processes that take place in systems outside of Appian, allowing you to get a fuller picture of how complex processes are performing.

Our Mining Prep module enables process owners without in-depth technical knowledge to transform complex data into event logs using intuitive and simple options. Quickly standardize and clean your data to prepare it for analysis.

Once event data is transformed, the Process Mining module presents a visualization of the current process to help you quickly see and identify inefficiencies, non-conformant cases, and key performance indicators (KPIs) that fall below your expectations.

Then, you're ready to identify, prioritize, and implement the needed changes. The following diagram shows how these all fit together:


The Appian platform brings process mining, workflow, and automation together so you can discover, design, and automate your business processes in one place. Only Appian takes you from knowing to doing in a unified suite.

Digital processes often generate large amounts of process data. The resulting data sets are difficult for humans to interpret, but our process mining features can easily gain insights from this data and help you make sense of your processes.

Mining Prep

Mining Prep rapidly enables process owners without in-depth technical knowledge to transform raw data into a suitable format for Process Mining.

Data sets come in all shapes and sizes. To get it ready for process mining, data needs to be transformed into a simplified, cleaned, and standardized format. For example, time stamps are vital to knowing when an event took place and for how long. If one data set shows time stamps in Eastern Standard Time (EST), but another shows them in Greenwich Mean Time (GMT), these two need to be standardized. Otherwise, the data is incorrect and significantly skews analysis.

Mining Prep helps you vastly reduce the amount of time needed to get from source data to actionable insights. When done manually, initial data collection, cleaning, and transformation are often time-consuming and error-prone. Mining Prep accelerates and simplifies the process of collecting event data and transforming it into a format for analysis.

Use Mining Prep to:

  • Connect to a database, or upload a CSV or Excel file.
  • Transform data into the proper log and attribute format.
  • Send data to Process Mining, and define subsequent ETL schedule.

Process Mining

Your data is ready. Now what? Using your event log as a starting point, Process Mining enables you to:

  • Monitor and explore how the various parts of the process are performing.
  • Explore and identify optimization opportunities in your process.
  • Identify and monitor the impact of changes you made to your process.

Process Mining helps you more easily identify and visualize inefficiencies, bottlenecks, or non-conformant activities in your business processes based on objective data from event logs. You can conduct multiple levels of analysis in Process Mining to find ways to improve your business processes.

When you upload an event log to Process Mining, the system automatically generates a discovered model, which represents your current processes, and helps you visualize how your processes currently run. For example, you can discover how long activities take to complete, the frequency of unexpected process steps, and how many distinct variants exist in your process.

Next, Process Mining helps with conformance checking. You can create a target model that describes how you expect the ideal process to run, and Process Mining automatically compares this with how your current process runs via the discovered model.

Process Mining can also perform root cause analysis to look even further into your process deviations. Root cause analysis can help you determine problematic case attributes, patterns in your deviations, and indicators for effective optimization.

Continuous improvement

After you've identified and implemented areas for improvement, you can regularly check the performance of your improved process. Process mining fits into a larger process management lifecycle designed to continually:

  • Ensure your processes align with corporate goals
  • Uncover new opportunities for optimization
  • Implement new activities that save you time and money, as well as improve quality
  • Cease or change activities that no longer serve their prior purpose
  • Ensure processes conform to requirements and standards

Get started

Ready to get started with Mining Prep and Process Mining? Take a look at what happens in each step of a process mining project, from start to finish.

Process Mining