Business process management (BPM) software has progressed from a niche solution
for automating administrative processes to a strategic business tool that is
being used to standardize and optimize mission-critical operations.
For organizations worldwide, BPM has become the preferred platform for:
- Streamlining and automating human-oriented and system-oriented workflows
- Driving consistency, quality, and standardization of business processes
- Increasing organizational throughput
- Ensuring regulatory compliance
- Sustaining change (Lean, Six Sigma)
Although today's BPM solutions automate and optimize structured business processes
exceptionally well, research says that only 20 percent of the work performed
by employees each day adheres to a formal or structured business process. The
other 80 percent of an employee's work is unstructured or completely dynamic.
Unlocking the value of all types of daily work processes requires extending
the same value of traditional BPM for structured processes -- visibility, control
and productivity -- to the 80 percent of work that is dynamic. But BPM solutions
are designed to support structured processes: workflows that follow formal (rigid,
concrete) rules defining roles (who can do what, when), policies (laws, rules),
and procedures (interactions, approvals).
"Structured" BPM is perfectly suited for automating formal workflows
(e.g. procurement, enrollment, compliance, expenses). However, structured BPM
is not designed to support constantly changing workflows (e.g. tasking, action
tracking, and project management) that make up 80 percent of the average employee
As a result, knowledge workers (today's white collar production engineer) naturally
turn to e-mail to manage dynamic work. E-mail has literally become our day-to-day
anchor for initiating, tracking, and completing dynamic work or "Taskers."
While it is a tremendous productivity tool, e-mail in turn can result in a
world of noise. E-mails pile up. They can have too much or too little information
to quickly determine status and results.
- No control over who sees what
- No status visibility for executives
- No real way to hold personnel accountable
- No way to prioritize