The Complete Business Process Management Reference Book

What is Business Process Management (BPM)?

The core principle of business process management (BPM) is that processes are central to the success of an organization - how a company repeatedly transforms data or objects from X to Y is the essence of the company. Business process management improves these operations through better process design, modeling, analysis, and execution.

“BPM brings attention to the highest-value processes — the ones that are most aligned with the business goals and strategy — for the best return on investment.” - Gartner

BPM Technology

Business Process Management is a methodology that almost always involves using technology to model and execute processes. Any specialized technology that accompanies a BPM initiative is called a Business Process Management System.

Every Business Process Management System includes:

  • A form builder to collect, display, and route relevant data
  • A workflow engine to assign tasks, establish rules, and set deadlines

Better BPM systems will also have:

  • Customized notifications and alerts to let people know when a task is ready to be done
  • Integrations with existing systems so that data does not have to be manually transferred from one system to another
  • Powerful reporting and analytics to monitor and track how well a process is running

Why Does BPM Matter?

Every organization has its own business management process but, left unmanaged, these processes can unravel, twist, and introduce a lot of chaos. As tasks go from person to person, it can be hard to keep a high-level perspective on what is actually going on.

Unmanaged, chaotic processes hurt a business and lead to one or more of these scenarios:

  • Time wasted
  • More errors
  • Increased blame
  • Lack of data
  • Demoralized employees

Applying business process management to your organization helps you improve processes and keeps all aspects of your operations running optimally.

Steps Involved in Business Process Management

The BPM process brings your operations under control, and involves five key steps:

business process management (BPM) Life Cycle

Design

Identify all the key information needed and map out the workflow steps that bring an item to completion.

Model

Create an automated form and workflow, linking them to existing databases and other integrations. Include any conditional or non-sequential tasks.

Implement

Test that the BPM process works perfectly and integrations are set correctly. Train users on how the system works, and then make the process live. Adjust any notifications or reminders.

Monitor

App administrators should measure KPIs and SLAs along with other important performance metrics. Set goals and generate reports.

Optimize

Review a BPM process periodically and identify areas for improvement.

What Can BPM Do for You?

Done right, business process management brings efficiency, effectiveness, and agility to your processes. Click on any of these links to learn about the benefits of following the BPM process.

HR:

Approve employee timesheets faster

Create a hassle-free employee onboarding process

Marketing:

Churn out consistent content marketing every time

Organize live events and coordinate campaigns

Sales:

Shorten your sales cycle

Be quicker with quotes and invoices

Finance:

One-click approvals for reimbursements

Create customized workflow route for exceptional approvals

Types of Business Process Management Systems

All BPM technology systems have a focus. There are three main ways to categorize a BPMS:

  • Integration-Centric BPM
  • Human-Centric BPM
  • Document-Centric BPM

Integration-Centric BPM Software

The key feature of this system is that it focuses on orchestrating business processes among various software. Its primary goal is to align your existing ERP, CMS, HRMS and other core technology tools along with your business processes.

Human-Centric BPM Software

This system focuses on routing tasks between individuals or groups. Its goal is to encourage better and more efficient collaboration. The most common use cases are approval processes and business management processes that involve several different people.

Document-Centric BPM Software

This system assumes that a document is at the heart of every process. It will facilitate the passing, updating, signing, and formatting of the document as it moves along the workflow.

While every BPM technology system will lean towards one of these, the best business process management tools contain aspects of each.

Business Process Management Methodologies

These are the three most common methodologies used in business process management:

Lean

Lean is fast to implement and focuses on eliminating waste to reduce cost and process time. Originally a brainchild of Toyota’s production system, Lean is a favorite among manufacturers and industrial companies. Read More

Six Sigma

Six Sigma helps identify and cut down process defects/inconsistencies. You can implement Six Sigma either through the DMAIC (define, measure, analyse, improve, control) or the DMADV (define, measure, analyze, design, verify) approach. It was pioneered by Motorola in 1985 and is now used across industries. Read More

Lean Six Sigma

This hybrid methodology brings together the strengths of both while focusing on process variations. It also includes increasing profits, efficiency, and employee moral. Read More

Other business process management methodologies that are commonly used across organizations are Just In Time, Hammer and Rummler–Brache, Kaizen, Kanban, etc.

How Do I Choose The Best BPM Technology For My Business?

As you evaluate business process management systems, check for these parameters: