Evolving Business Process Management - Key Contributor in Business Outcomes

By CIOReview | Tuesday, August 23, 2016
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Business Process Management (BPM) relates to operations management with focuses on improving and augmenting an organization’s business processes to drive the business outcomes. It is an enterprise-wide, structured approach to provide the products and services that customer's value most. BPM is also the process of dealing with people or handling things more effectively and efficiently in an ever-changing environment. The goal of BPM is to reduce the errors that are made by humans. In a way it is a “process optimization process” and includes disciplines such as business architecture, process modeling and governance, process improvement, and process automation.

BPM leverages software and services to provide complete transparency into an organization. It is a subset of infrastructure management, which is the management of essential operation components like policies, processes, equipment and data, for overall effectiveness of a business process. Considering processes of an organization as key assets, BPM stresses on better understanding, management, and development of processes for delivering greater value to customers.

According to BPMInstitute.org, BPM can be defined as:

The definition, improvement, and management of a firm's end-to-end enterprise business processes in order to achieve three outcomes crucial to a performance-based, customer-driven firm:

• Clarity on strategic direction
• Alignment of the firm's resources
• Increased discipline in daily operations

By understanding these three key elements of business process, a company can meet the customer needs, by which the gap between customer expectations and an organization’s ability to perform begins to emerge.

With businesses becoming more and more customer oriented, moving BPM to the cloud improves business agility, builds customer loyalty and opens up new opportunities in Social media. Analyzing the benefits of moving process management to the cloud shows why it is customer friendly.

Creating e-forms and reports becomes simple. A broader range of tools can be integrated into the customer experience. There is a full compliance with regulations and an API can be used to make the business needs traceable. This has, without a doubt, seen more and more organizations migrating towards BPM platforms and software.

Renowned research and advisory firm Gartner’s Research Director, Rob Dunie observed that, in 2015 alone, the global expenditure on BPM software reached a staggering $2.6Bn and it has been on a constant rise at a rate of 4.9 percent through 2016.

According to Gartner, most BPM platforms in the current market generally have three attributes:

• A graphical business process or a rule modeling capability
• A process registry to handle the modeling metadata.
• A process execution engine and a state management engine.

There are three types of BPM platforms that they have defined which can accelerate application development, transform business processes, and digitalize business processes:

• Basic BPM – As the name suggests, it is the primary type of Business Process management and can be handled by non-IT employees as no coding is involved. It is employed in a human-centric workflow where it used for designing, implementing and executing processes. The drawback with this type of BPM is that, since it is pre-coded, it can be used only for certain pre-defined processes.
• BPM Suite – A BPM suite contains more knowledge and tools in comparison to a basic BPM. It enhances business process by providing continuous intelligence into the process performance. Since it is a more advanced platform with better tools, it is not restricted to just human-centric workflow, but can also be used in tandem with other process related systems.
• iBPMS – It is most intelligent and goal-seeking BPM platform that is available today. It is supported by complex event processing and predictive analytics tools; and is used for process reinvention and business transformation. Highly skilled personnel are required to manage it. Even though it is not suited for non-IT employees, it more than makes up for it with its capabilities in process management. It can be employed to manage ad-hoc types of non-routine work and analyze in-process performance and external data.

One of the main trends now is combining real time analytics with BPM that holds promises in identifying inefficiencies and rectifying them. This optimizes the entire process and provides a stable and smooth business environment.

As technology gradually moves to the cloud, consequently BPM is evolving to match its needs. Even though technology plays key role in business execution, without process, hitches are inevitable. The future of business is will be heavily influenced by Big Data, IoT and more importantly - intelligent processes.