More thoughts from Terry Schurter…
The reason BPM is so important is that when we look at a business process, we’re looking at the entire chain of events that occurs in producing a given outcome -not just part of it. For instance, does it really help to scan incoming documents if, later in the process, we print out those documents? In most cases, probably not.
Instead, we’re far more likely to achieve desired benefits when we look at how those desired outcomes are created and improve the processes that drive them. Taking the BPM approach helps us optimize the interactions of both people-to-people and people-to-content in our organizations to better achieve our desired outcomes.
Doing that isn’t always easy. Managing processes can be a complex and difficult task. Improving processes often involves changing the way things get done, and may even require a change-management program. Still, by helping us achieve those desired outcomes, BPM creates value, and that makes it worth the effort.
I believe that Terry’s thoughts highlight the reason people are reluctant to implement BPM.
Many people have a difficult time identifying their processes. If they recognize an outcome, they are not sure of what it took to get there. They don’t know what people are involved in the process; they don’t know what content was needed to perform a task; they don’t know what content was created as a result of the process; and, they may not even be able to identify the first step in the process.
And, if you should be able to identify the current process, figuring out how to improve it isn’t easy. There are many issues that constrain your ability to improve the process. Implementing a process improvement involves:
The customer – it must make it easier for the customer to do business with you
Process participants – it may be necessary for them to change the way they perform their tasks; they may need to change what tasks they perform; they may need to perform more or less tasks; and, people hate change.
However, improving processes to achieve desired outcomes does create value. It should lower costs, lead to increased revenues, and improve customer relationships and that makes it worth the effort. It can differentiate you from your competitors. It can be the key that allows your company to break out as the market leader [increased market share].
What steps has your company taken to be a market leader?