Leading BPM platforms deliver a variety of capabilities in a single package. Process management technology allows an organization to streamline its operations by automating, executing, and monitoring business processes from beginning to end. Knowledge management and collaborative tools enable it to leverage information by managing its documents and content and facilitating employee interaction in collaborative, knowledge-based communities. Integrated analytics help increase visibility by delivering extensive reports on key business operations and process execution to managers.
Following are high level capabilities a BPM platform should have:
Process is simply sets of activities and transactions conducted regularly to achieve business objectives. It can be:
- Simple (e.g., order fulfillment) OR Complex (e.g., new product development)
- Short-term (e.g., employee on-boarding) OR Ongoing (e.g., regulatory compliance)
- Function-specific (e.g., proposal management) OR industry-specific (e.g., energy procurement)
- In a single department (e.g., billing), across an enterprise (i.e. strategic sourcing), or extend across the value chain (i.e. supply chain management)
Every organization has business processes—it’s how work is accomplished. But, too many organizations rely on outdated procedures, with paper forms or other manual steps. By becoming comfortable in their procedures—how work gets done—leaders and workers cost their organizations more than lost efficiencies. They lose sight of the opportunity cost of getting work accomplished the way “it’s always been done.”
Embedded process—with BPM at the core—automates to improve operational efficiency, but it also can drive more growth, manage governance, risk, and compliance effortlessly, and improve customer and employee engagement.
A BPM platform should have knowledge management capabilities to converge information on from across the organization.
The most current, complete, and accurate data are the lifeblood of good business decisions. Using complete, accurate data in business processes drives better results. So what happens when the data is not up-to-date, complete, or accurate? Bad decisions.
The best BPM platforms can pull together all data on any particular topic from across all enterprise systems in a single place. In doing so, decision-makers are better informed to take the most appropriate action in any circumstance.
Business rules are the logic that in large part drives process automation. Rules provide the structure for consistent, automated process.
Consistency is the key to optimized process. That’s why Rules are a core component of any BPM platform. But, business is never simple. There are exceptions. There are changes that must be addressed; circumstances that drive different approaches and variety in process steps.
BPM platforms typically have a dynamic business rules engine to automate not only processes that are the same time and time again, but also those which are complex with many variables. Business rules help ensure consistent, optimized process around virtually any circumstance.
Social Collaboration is a way to share information across an organization and interact to achieve a common goal. It drives awareness of any circumstance while adding to an organization’s knowledge base. Social collaboration is considered different from traditional collaboration in that it is inclusive by definition—involving anyone/everyone in a group or organization. It embraces a concept that good ideas are everywhere and anywhere.
The single greatest business advantage in any organization is largely untapped. It’s contained within the brains of all knowledge workers. Unfortunately, traditional collaboration is exclusive by nature. You must be added to that email chain…asked to participate in a meeting or phone call…and at the very least, have knowledge of something to be able to participate and add value. Conversely, social collaboration is inclusive, uncovering information and ideas that may otherwise go unnoticed and unrecognized. It helps organizations fully tap the intellectual capital that often never surfaces.
Mobility represents the ability to use a business technology solution the same way on any mobile device as on a desktop computer. Mobile is a lifestyle. The explosion of smartphones and tablets in our personal lives has crossed into our professional lives as well. But with it is an unintended consequence—the need for control.
Enterprise mobility is about giving workers more control to get more done. It’s about expanding the toolset beyond the desktop to any device, without a degradation of functionality, usability, or impact.
The best business technology embraces the needs of those that it is intended to help. That means enabling mobility—usage on any device at any time, interchangeably.
Security is about keeping data and operations safe from anything that could possibly threaten it, including disaster, hackers, or anything else you can think of. When BPM technology helps drive the core processes of an organization, security must be a prime consideration.
It’s the reality of our world today. You can never be too secure. With major hacks making headlines seemingly every other day, there must be comfort that any particular solution protects against threats known and unknown. Make sure your BPM platform technology is continually monitored and security-tested.
Flexible Deployment Options
The ability to house and run your BPM platform on-premise and/or in a cloud environment interchangeably provides ultimate flexibility for organizations with a need to house sensitive data and/or processes behind their own firewall.
Organizations have unique needs. This is especially true when it comes to management of systems that house sensitive data. By making sure you can run all aspects of your BPM platform technology in any environment, however it suits your organization, you can be sure your process and data needs are met.
BPM can be a complex. Enablement is the combination of programs, tools, and people to make sure your BPM technology initiatives are successful. A Center of Excellence is a proven way to drive success.