BPM Creates Value

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.

My Thoughts…

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]. 

Your Thoughts…

What steps has your company taken to be a market leader?

2 thoughts on “BPM Creates Value

  1. Scott, good thoughts and subject but I am not in agreement. But me being a BPM sceptic that won’t be a surprise to you. I don’t think that BPM creates any value. BPM can help to ensure consistent execution. That is NOT always value. If the conditions or expectations around the execution have changed, then the enforced consistency will not allow value to be created. What produces value is a focus on current (in THIS execution) customer expectations of outcome! That value is mostly produced by people using knowledge. Yes, for some processes the automation of mass production work so that it can be performed by lesser skilled people may be of interest in terms of lower costs, but it has no customer outcome focus.

    People are reluctant to implement BPM because they don’t feel or see the benefits. Nothing else. They are being forced to use it. So is anyone surprised that they don’t like it? So BPM must be turned into a social exercise, but not just adding chit-chat (lipstick) to BPM (the pig). Social interaction must allow users to work with resources towards defined goals.

    Yes, if you try to hardcode processes it becomes a difficult and tiresome task. It actually reduces the ability to change. People do not mind change if the change is easy and intuitive. If they have to get used to sime cumbersome way of doing something they don’t want that to change too often. If they can do things they like and the customer likes they don’t mind change at all. And paying them to do something more accurately has never worked. Intrinsic motivation is the only working motivation.

    If all of the above happens and that means to NOT do it the BPM way, then the customer might actually perceive that your business is easy to do business with. That does not mean to improve processes, it means to empower people to achieve outcomes. Those have to be linked to process goals and business targets.

    Regards, Max

  2. Pingback: BPM Quotes of the week « Adam Deane

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