From an Upside Research article…

For a while, BPM looked promising as an answer to the desire of business leaders to increase the agility and automation of critical business processes.  And, done correctly, it can be.  However, over the past several years BPM has morphed from simple process automation and management into a much broader, infrastructure-type commitment that is often too complex, requiring significant IT resources and long lead times.  In many cases, a standard BPM initiative forces the business to re-examine its business processes, causing greater complexity and more resistance, even from business users.

My Thoughts…

This is a prime example where the focus turns from the problem to the technology.

In earlier blogs, I spoke of the 80/20 rule.  It is likely that only 20% of a company’s processes are ‘high value’ processes.  That means there is financial reason to improve those processes.  Fix the most expensive one first – simple process automation and management.

By successfully improving your most expensive process, your company will see benefits far greater than the price of the solution.  By removing non-value added activities and streamlining the process, you will be able to get more work done in less time.  And, because you didn’t get caught up in the ‘technology’, you will see the results quickly.  And, results mean lower costs.

Many of us have experience with scope creep.  You might be working on a high value process attempting to squeeze out non-value activities and someone decides that SOA [technology] should be addressed.  Complexity rears its ugly head and complexity always leads to scope creep.

My experience suggests that it would be best for you and your company to continue to work on the 20% high value processes.  At some point, infrastructure may show up as a problem.  When it does, that is the time to address it.


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