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What two trends will have the biggest impact on BPM in the near future?

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What two trends (i.e. data, social. mobile, case management, or something else) will have the biggest impact on BPM in the near future?

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  • Actually it could be none of the above now. If you're watching CeBIT you'll see Bosch showing off their Internet Of Things BPM moves. Quite interesting.

    Social and Mobile unified have the potential to impact how we view the flow of work and process management in general but it has to be applied across both the technology and discipline to be most effective.

    Apps are also going to impact the bigger players now. A platform is no longer an agile tool and clients are looking for leaner ways to apply technology to process, business apps could potentially sneak up on larger vendors peddling platforms and steal the show.

    And because of this, if I wanted to be a betting man, I'll suggest something left field: A startup will have the biggest impact on BPM simply because it won't be dragging a decayed legacy of bloatware with it. It'll do it afresh, with todays and tomorrows technology and business structures in mind, not yesterdays.

    And I welcome it.

  • Easy...processes that are changing rapidly based on where our suppliers and customers are in the moment, in the supply chain, in the decision process. I agree with Theo that this means the startup with no legacy ball and chain can sneak up on the big players.

    My wife wrote up a piece on "Climbing into the shopping cart" that is just one example of how this will happen and how it will benefit the small, nimble startup (brand or tech vendor):

    http://successfulworkplace.com/2013/03/07/climbing-into-the-shopping-cart/

  • End-point telemetry and DIY-BPM.

    As more and more devices become wearable and enabled to the 'net we will see those devices streaming telemetry constantly that interacts directly with our process management systems. The RFID in our badge will announce our arrival at the office and provision our hot-desk before we get there. Our FitBit will detect an above average sedentry day and schedule an hour at the gym in the calendar. Devices will act on their own, make decisions on our behalf and collaborate with other devices to get our job done.

    And just as accountants lost their exclusive domain of tabular work with the arrival of spreadsheets, we will lose supremacy over process automation with the arrival of Personal-BPM solutions that are as easy to use as MS Excel and Visio and that are enabled for mobile, social and cloud out of the box.

  • Yes agree with Theo and Christopher a completely new “adaptive” technology approach without “bloatware” and complexity that modular tools have created will be biggest driver. The pressures are building;

    • the need for enterprise software to deliver an outside in flexible BPM approach with ERP already dying,
    • mobile becoming more mission critical,
    • value networks including external customer/suppliers eliminating the silo mentality
    • the ever increasing need for efficiency without compromise on "compliance" needs
    • The move away from command and control management to one of empowerment and measurement

    It will happen but do not expect the big vendors to welcome this......!


  • There is burgeoning interest in enhancing BPM with fully integrated multimedia annotation and markup capabilities. This combination addresses the ever growing demand for auditable review of regulated decision making, which shows no sign of slowing.

    The other key trend is exactly what Kevin identified as "end-point telemetry" (Gartner calls these "sensors"—that term had us scratching our heads around here for weeks until we figured out what they were talking about). Even sensors that are available today (GPS, smartphone cameras, accelerometers) can provide critical data for certain kinds of processes. Sensors generally fall into the "mobility" category, and mobility is perhaps the most important trend in technology today.

  • The more likely outcome is not that a startup disrupts successfully, but that it gets acquired (or fails).

    And I think the question was what trends would have the most impact, not who would have the most impact :)

    I like theo's basic premise that apps and other approaches to enterprise software open up the possibility of disruption regardless of who does it.

    But I guess we'll all get to find out one way or the other :)

  • Not often I agree with Theo :-)

    But as he suggests:

    "Apps are also going to impact the bigger players now. A platform is no longer an agile tool and clients are looking for leaner ways to apply technology to process, business apps could potentially sneak up on larger vendors peddling platforms and steal the show."

    Unless of course the bigger vendors lead the way with apps :-) OpenText have now launched their Smart Process Applications approach and are already garnering interest from users who in the past have stayed away from BPMS.

    Smart Process Apps seem to offer the out of the box benefits of package apps, but combine it with the customisability of BPMS built apps. Throw in social enabling and mobile connectivity and you hit most of the key points.

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