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BPM from a Business Point of View

Scott Cleveland

Taking on a BPM project

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BPM is about managing your business processes. Software is not required to manage business processes.  Companies have been defining and managing their processes without software for years.

Identify the business need
You are looking at BPM because you have a problem. Maybe a process takes too long or it costs too much.  Maybe the problem is just a daily annoyance that you would like to get rid of.  No matter the reason, it's always about money.

The discovery phase
Start the discovery phase with a project manager and a 'cross functional' team.

Define the problem process.  Identify the steps that take place. At each step, who performs what activities?  What do they need in order to perform those activities (information, materials, etc.)? What are the dependencies? Are there business rules that must be followed? What are the customer 'touch points'?  Where has this process been failing?

Document your findings. Document the process. Confirm with your 'cross functional' team that you have accurately documented the process. Put in place some metrics to measure this process - you will need these numbers to determine costs and success.

Decision analysis
You now have some ideas of the cost.  What would you have to spend [opportunity cost] to make the needed improvements?  If the spend is less than the cost, you can move forward.  What is the cost of a BPM software implementation?  When you implement BPM software, you still have to manually make the needed improvements and then implement them in the software.  So, you add the 2 costs together.  If the spend is less than the costs, you can make the case to move forward.

BPM Software provides control and visibility.  It is not automatic, you have to define the controls and you configure what you want to see from the software.

There are some great benefits to be had managing your business processes either manually or with software.  I recommend that you look into it...

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1 Comment

"What is the cost of a BPM software implementation?"

Don't forget to take into account things like ramp up time, training programs and other secondary costs that come from starting a new BPM project. You want to make sure you have the right expectations from the start.

Scott Cleveland blogs about BPM from a business point of view.

Scott Cleveland

Scott Cleveland is a technical, innovative and creative marketing manager with more than 25 years of experience in marketing, marketing management, sales, sales management and business process consulting aimed at high-tech companies. His areas of expertise include: product marketing, solutions marketing, solution selling, sales maangement, business process management, business process improvement and process optimization. Reach him at RScottCleveland[at]gmail.com.


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