Case management in transition: How businesses can benefit

Case management is in the midst of massive transformation.

Long associated mostly with professions that handle individual cases—health care, law, social services and insurance, for instance—the approach is now attracting interest from other industries ranging from energy to manufacturing to higher education.

In fact, in ebizQ’s most recent survey of business and IT managers, a majority of respondents—across all types of businesses—said they’re using, planning to use or considering case management technology. Respondents also reported using the approach not just in traditional applications such as finance and customer service, but in newer ways—for supply chain, marketing and human resources, to name a few.

Meanwhile, case management technology is evolving as well. In the past, “the software approach to handling case management has been to custom-build,” says Janelle B. Hill, a vice president and distinguished analyst at Gartner Inc. “You’d hire an industry specialist and build out a very specialized solution.”

But that’s changed radically over the past few years, as vendors in a variety of specialties--BPM, workflow, content management and others--enter the case-management arena. “Everyone sees an emerging market for case management,” Hill says. “Many are trying to provide pre-built, off-the-shelf, configurable patterns for case management, with the whole idea that if you start from a template, you can get to a customized [solution] faster and with less cost.”

That’s the supply side of the equation. “On the demand side, we think what’s happening is that a lot more industries are getting a lot more complex. There’s a lot of regulatory change affecting how industries work,” Hill says. “A lot of industries are starting to think about their work as being case-like, not just simple straightforword transactions.” Analysts see a growing number of requests for proposals (RFPs) and requests for information (RFIs) about case-management solutions, she says.

About the Author

Anne Stuart, ebizQ's editor from mid-2010 to mid-2013, is now senior editor for at ebizQ's parent company, TechTarget. She is a veteran journalist who has written for national magazines, daily newspapers, an international news service and many Web sites. She’s specialized in covering business and technology issues for 20 years. Based in Newton, Mass., she can be reached at Follow Anne on Google+ and at annestuart_TT on Twitter. For general questions about ebizQ, please e-mail

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