Bill Gates once said: “The first rule of any technology used in a business is that automation applied to an efficient operation will magnify the efficiency. The second is that automation applied to an inefficient operation will magnify the inefficiency”.
This piece of business wisdom applies both to technological tools and internal procedures or processes. All companies have their own unique business processes but sometimes they can become ineffective, duplicative and slow. Business Process Management (BPM) addresses strategic business problems and brings improvements by using fresh methods, models and metrics to make needed evaluations. It allows executives to monitor, measure and deploy resources more successfully.
In other words, if we want to maintain a successful workflow, we simply need BPM. It’s often defined as the perfect, systematic approach to achieving the best work results.
BPM is the sum of the processes that are present in an organisation. We need processes to create an effective methodology that will allow us to manage times of crisis and day to day business more efficiently. The more efficient and effective the processes are, the more efficient organisation we’ll have. BPM enables us to control cost and quality of our work.
There are so many definitions, manuals and guides explaining what Business Process Management means and why everyone should be employing it. The truth is that BPM can be different things, depending on the circumstances. It can be seen as an operational manual, internal process or a business logic. It is often identified with technological tools which are nothing more than means to achieve and control a process. Usually, the understanding of BPM depends on employees who are involved in the working process and their own unique roles.
Nowadays, technology is one of the most important instruments to get the work done or simply supervised and checked, so it is almost impossible to discuss BPM without mentioning it. While many companies concentrate on finding the latest and best possible tools, especially in times of crisis, a tool is still just a tool. The common mistake is to consider BPM a technology tool itself. In fact, the technology is just one small part of BPM.
Two main philosophies clash nowadays: one that states that relying on the employee’s experience is the optimal way to achieve efficiency and the other that promotes the use of processes. The first approach has different employees do the same tasks different way based on their experience. This can work to a point where the status quo is broken and you need to introduce changes. The other approach that has people using the same logic and tools – processes – in their work may steal some creativity from the employees, but has the advantage of being measurable and more efficient for business in the long run.
It is very common that employees are not capable of keeping an eye on the overall progress, so they keep getting lost in the process without having done any efficient work. Implementing the new technique will turn wastefulness to benefits and improve the quality of work and make it more time efficient as well. Everyone would like to do their job faster and more effectively and get recognition for their hard work. If the team is doing its best, the company will get excellent results.
Business Process Management metrology is not only used to control but also to analyse business processes and activities. We can easily see how effective the tools and methods are, so we can improve them in the future. It is completely normal to make mistakes while working on a project, but if BPM is being used in the organisation and it is executed properly, we are reducing the risk of repeating the same mistakes over and over again. The first step towards resolving a problem is to recognise the issues so that we can put our focus on getting control over them in order to manage activities proactively and successfully. The goal is to standardise the work process, but that doesn’t mean that the process won’t change anymore, on the contrary, the technique will continue evolving over time.
Those who are not flexible enough to seek out innovative and creative approaches are risking to get left behind. Lack of agility and professionalism will result in a lack of collaborators since no other companies will be willing to cooperate with stagnant and rigid partners. Also, it is very important to stay in touch with customers and to listen to their needs and feedback. Staying on the market is a challenge, so ambition and willingness to grow should be strong and constant. With that being said, it’s clear that BPM is all about forming a mentality of constant change and growth.
Keeping up with competition has become harder than ever. The danger of being overrun by others is constantly present in the ever-changing business environment. The good news is that this can be significantly decreased by receiving benefits of BPM. It aligns business functions and customer requirements and advances the growth of the company. It allows us to understand what is more appealing to consumers and how we can attract more of them. Firms will be rewarded by saving money, minimising possibilities of failure and practising time management.
Therefore, it is clear that top performing companies are the ones that have adopted BPM and successfully practised it for a long time. Also, it is important to have people in charge (Process Managers)accountable not only for the process implementation but also for staying in touch with the daily activities in order to keep the process reflecting the needs of the business and those who are working with it.
However, we can agree on one thing: this kind of management approach and methodology is irreplaceable for its many benefits – visibility, business agility, technology improvement and overall success.