What is Business Process Management (BPM)?
There are certain problems that crop up again and again in businesses of all types and sizes. These issues are so common because they stem from your Business processes — the ways in which your business operates on a day-to-day basis. Business Process Management (BPM) is a structured methodology in which you can evaluate your business workflows to figure out how to make your organisation more efficient and effective. It assesses existing processes and pinpoints areas for improvement to create an efficient and effective organization – significantly improving on time delivery of products and services and delivering a world class customer experience.
Here are the most common problems we see businesses face and how BPM can help address them:
BPM can help your organization run more smoothly.
At the foundation of every successful business is a smooth workflow. BPM can help you maximize the performance of your teams by creating a structure they can follow each day to deliver consistent results. You might be thinking, “But every business already has a workflow!” That’s true, but not every workflow is efficient or effective – or necessary. When you first sit down to define your business processes, you should look for ways to make them more efficient. BPM allows you to document your business processes and then automate them so that the same tasks can be carried out each day with little or no human intervention. One of the simplest ways to improve your workflow is to track the time spent on different tasks with a Time and Motion Study. You can then use this data to optimize your schedules and identify processes and employees which could be operating more efficiently. You can also use tracking data to identify areas where you could improve your workflow by prioritizing certain tasks over others.
Your employees struggle to find information quickly.
When employees can’t locate the information they need, it can slow down their progress, reduce productivity, and increase errors. A well-designed business process will have clear pathways for employees to follow. It should also keep track of progress and show employees where they are within the process. This means employees will know when they’re done with a task and when they can expect to be notified about the next steps they need to take. If you implement BPM software, you can create a centralised hub for your business processes, including all the information employees will need to follow them. BPM software allows you to track both the work flow and the data that goes along with that work flow.
Your business suffers from silo-ed data.
When different departments or teams within your business operate with their own data, it can lead to confusion and inefficiency. With BPM, your organisation can create a central hub where employees can access the data they need without relying on other teams. The best BPM software will also allow multiple employees to access the same data at the same time, even if they are in different locations. This can really help your business work more smoothly if, for example, an engineer needs to know the status of a customer’s order without having to call the customer directly or contact another department.
You have too much unstructured data.
If you’re operating with business process management software, you can improve your processes by identifying and mapping out your unstructured data. Unstructured data is information that doesn’t fit neatly into spreadsheets or databases. This data can range from simple things like emails and phone calls to more complex information like conversations held on online chat apps, contracts or even photographs. BPM software has built-in functionality that allows you to map out your unstructured data. You can see which data sources you have, as well as the different ways you can use them. You can also see where you’re currently missing information and how you can address that.
Employees struggle with change management.
When employees are uncomfortable with the changes happening around them, it can lead to low morale and poor work quality. Your business processes should be flexible enough to adapt to the needs of your employees. Too often, businesses create processes that aren’t easy to change. If a task is carried out a certain way, employees don’t always know how to make changes to it. BPM allows you to document your business processes in a way that makes it easy for employees to suggest changes. If your team feels like something isn’t working, they can suggest changes to the process and see them implemented quickly. This can be especially helpful for businesses that rely on remote employees. If one team in your organization needs to change their processes, it’s much easier to get that implemented across the board if everyone can see the changes on a shared platform.
Employees are overworked and constantly feel overwhelmed.
When your employees are overworked, they don’t have the time they need to do their best work. At best, this means they’re putting out poor results. At worst, it could lead to burnout and resignations. Employees should be able to easily identify the tasks they need to complete each day. And they should be able to track their progress towards completion. BPM can help you create a system where each process is broken down into smaller, more manageable tasks. This means your employees will be able to see exactly what they need to do each day and how long it should take them to do it.
You struggle to focus on the future of your business.
Any successful business needs to be constantly thinking about the future. You need to be asking yourself, “How will our business look in six months?” and “How can we get there?” One of the best ways to prepare for the future is to use BPM software to improve your current processes. When you first create your business processes, you can resolve immediate needs of your organisation and provide flexibility for the business to scale efficiently.
Proactive implementation of BPM.
There’s no better time to implement BPM in your company than when you first notice the problems listed above. However, BPM doesn’t have to be a reactive solution. It can be applied proactively, as well. When you first sit down to design your business processes, you don’t have to be focused on problems. Instead, you can be focused on what you want your organisation to look like in the future and build your processes around that goal. You don’t have to be an IT specialist to implement BPM in your organisation. It’s a decision that can benefit any type of business — from call centres to manufacturers and everything in between.
When you implement business process management in your organisation, you’re making a commitment to maximizing the performance of your teams and significantly improve customer service. BPM allows you to centralise your business data, automate your processes, and break them down into manageable tasks. Business process management is the best way to streamline your business and make sure that everyone is on the same page.