Business process management & automation: The 101 lessons on BPM
Organizations often find that managing their business processes an uphill task. Enterprise owners often underestimate the need for Business Process Management (BPM), considering it a huge expense and necessary only for organizations with large-scale processes. However, BPM comes in handy for all businesses, irrespective of their size. Let’s have a deeper look at what BPM is all about.
What is BPM?
Business Process Management, or BPM, is a structured approach that organizations follow to improve their operational processes. A business process is a set of activities that helps businesses realize their goals, like increasing productivity or improving the diversity of their workforce. BPM helps businesses raise their overall productivity, cater to their customers’ needs, and increase the value of the business.
BPM methodology comes in handy during a crisis, by ensuring that the processes are effective and efficient, and ensuring the unimpeded growth of the organization. BPM encompasses the way we study, recognize, modify, and monitor business processes to make sure they improve and work smoothly over time. BPM is all about formulating better ways of getting work done.
Though BPM is a practice, it is technologies like AI that often aid it in automating repetitive , multistep, business processes. Generally known as Business Process Automation (BPA), it streamlines the business workflows and operations, helping organizations perform efficiently.
Benefits of BPM
More and more companies are adopting BPM software to accelerate their business functions. As per research by Horses for Sources, over 54% of businesses invest in process automation applications. Let’s look at the various benefits that BPM brings.
BPM paves the way for great organizational efficiency. BPM helps the organization create a solid and structured framework for all its processes. This methodology documents, monitors, and optimizes all processes.
BPM continuously analyzes all parts of the process, identifying and eliminating tasks that add zero to little value. This constant examination increases the overall efficiency of the business and keeps its processes up to date.
Reduction in cost and errors
When using common tools like spreadsheets, human errors are unavoidable. It can be difficult to assign roles to the workforce or build a proper mechanism to update the data regularly.
Good BPM practices reduce the occurrence of errors and make sure that the workforce and stakeholders get timely and correct information about their duties and deadlines. Additionally, all errors become easy to trace and fix in time. BPM thereby cuts down on costs by fixing errors on time and accelerating processes.
Reduced cycle times
BPM strives to improve trivial issues during operations. For example, communication between the sales and accounts teams to create an invoice can be a tedious process. BPM fosters smooth communication between all departments, reducing business cycle times.
Improving customer experience
BPM also makes for a great customer experience. BPM facilitates the re-engineering of all organizational operations, which results in improved customer experience and expectations.
Fostering deep digital transformation
Today, digital transformation is a familiar term for any tech-savvy business. Digital transformation brings stability and adaptability to an enterprise with the help of technology. BPM facilitates this digital transformation.
BPM helps enterprises build processes to meet their organizational goals. Employees analyze and decide what suits their teams before building solutions. This sets the ball rolling for a business’ digital transformation. .
BPM life cycle
BPM covers vast ground and a variety of processes. We can categorize BPM into these key phases:
- Design: The first step of BPM is to analyze the existing process and identify the areas of improvement. We then design the ideal business process according to standards and automation.
- Model: We check how the redesigned business process functions in various scenarios.
- Implement: We execute the business process with improvements in standardizations and process automation.
- Monitor: We track the behavior and performances of the improved process.
- Optimize: We continue to monitor and improve the business process.
The BPM lifecycle is not always an easy and straightforward one, and each step needs careful planning to execute perfectly. Businesses must ensure they prepare well before implementing BPM to get their processes to maximum productivity.
Different categories of BPM
Business process management is a comprehensive methodology involving a myriad of tools, which comprise three different categories:
- System-centric: System-centric BPM is implemented in enterprises where applications take care of operations with minimal human effort. Customer relationship management processes are an example of this category of BPM.
- Human-centric: In this approach, the BPM focuses on the human-led operations. Business applications that have human interaction at the center, like notifications and alerts are examples of this category.
- Document-centric: Just as the name suggests, this approach focuses on documents. Processes like documenting, formatting, and signing come under this category. There are specialized BPM tools that perform tasks like signing and formatting.
Examples of BPM
BPM works for multiple departments and performs a variety of functions. Here’s a quick glance at a few examples and applications of BPM.
- Finance: In any organization, the finance section is integral to the business. The finance department receives several documents from various other departments, via both human employees and systems. These include forms, emails, and documents regarding the company’s internal and external finance operations. With a BPM, the organization can speed up activities like processing employee salaries or managing expenses.
- Human Resources: The HR department juggles many processes and sheets, like managing the employee timesheet and onboarding new hires. BPM makes all these processes faster and more efficient. . BPM also cuts down on paper use, adding to the eco-friendly quotient of the company.
- Sales: The sales team consists of a combination of human-centric and system-centric processes. BPM coordinates sales quotes and invoices, to reduce cycle times and workflows.
When BPM meets automation
Business Process Automation goes hand-in-hand with automation technology like Artificial Intelligence (AI), Intelligent Automation (IA), and Robotics Process Application (RPA). Business processes get work done, increase profitability, and give businesses an edge over competition. Modern businesses that look to the future automate their business and push towards a digital transformation.
To meet the demands of rising competition, BPA synchronizes with these automation tools, evolving into intelligent solutions known as Business Process Automation (BPA).
BPM is built to focus on the expected output rather than the processes themselves. This means that it involves redesigning all processes to maximize operational efficiency. Once the redesign is complete, automation focuses on optimizing the workflow. Automation brings the transformed processes to life.
BPM is an ever-evolving discipline driven by the progress of work. BPMand automation tools are a must-have for businesses of sizes. If you’re still unsure about taking the plunge, reach out to know more.
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