Conformance Checking is a technique used to compare event logs or the resulting process with the existing reference model (target model) of the same process. This technique is used to determine whether the target process corresponds to the actual process. Conformance Checking is a Process Mining method used to check compliance.
How exactly does Conformance Checking work?
In Process Mining, the real process is visualized using event logs. This visualization is also referred to as the actual process. All logged process activities, as well as their duration and sequence, are represented in this process model. Conformance checking then compares this actual process with a reference model. This can be visualized as a superimposition of the two models. For this comparison to make sense, there should be a relatively high degree of agreement between the basic activities in both models. In reality, however, it happens that employees carry out steps that are not planned. Just like the sequence of work steps, the execution of activities over time does not always proceed according to plan. Conformance checking is performed to identify these cases. However, this requires a certain correspondence between the two models.
Why do we do Conformance Checking?
So that all process deviations from the actual to the target process or reference model can be identified. This includes skipping, duplicating, or executing unplanned process activities. These process deviations can lead to audit problems or to violations of legal or other regulations, such as compliance. In addition, process deviations may require higher resources or have a negative impact on product or service quality. As a result, most process deviations lead to financial losses. As a result, companies have a great interest in identifying all unplanned process sequences in order to introduce appropriate preventive measures. In some cases, process adaptations are also carried out, which ultimately change the target process model.