September 25th, 2017 • BPM
Let’s be honest, when you’re first starting out, most Business Process Management (BPM) software make things more complicated.
Most of the traditionally-built BPM solutions are often embellished with too many features, come with a steep learning curve, and are hard to maintain. In order to fully exploit these BPM tools, you have to devour the complex user guide that comes with it or have a team of dedicated IT pros guarding it all the time. And the product can burn even deeper holes in your pockets if you hire a consultant to make sense out of its analytics data.
It’s like buying a fancy car that requires the driver to pay more attention to the controls on the dashboard than to what is actually happening on the road. That’s a disaster waiting to happen.
A really useful BPM system should be easy to use right out of the gate and should immediately start delivering simplicity. Here are six ways the right BPM tool can actually reduce complexity right from the start.
Companies no longer buy business process management solutions as packaged software. Thanks to the boost in cloud computing, a majority of businesses get their software needs fulfilled from cloud vendors who offer solutions through a software as a service (SaaS) model. There are many benefits to buying a SaaS application, such as easy setup and deployment, round the clock access to data, flexibility in cost, data safety, etc.
On-premise software comes with a perpetual licensing cost – buy and own it for a hefty cost even if only a handful of people will ever actually use it in the first year. Cloud-based BPM products that are priced with a user subscription are easier on the budget and allow you to try something on a small scale first.
Many software vendors end up adding too many features into their products without realizing that most companies will not either understand or use them. They become a source of confusion and constant annoyance if users are going to spend a lot of time figuring them out.
‘Feature creep’ is a real phenomenon, and a lot of BPM software suffer from it. From an enterprise point of view, pick a software that offers the adequate amount of features to streamline your processes. Many vendors, especially in the cloud sector, make this possible by allowing companies to opt out of features they don’t need.
If you are really looking to reduce complexity when implementing a BPM project, you cannot overlook the type of support you will get.
No matter how intuitive, users will always have some questions they need answered. If you choose an on-premise option, they generally have a sell-it-and-forget-it service model, a throwback to 1980s customer service when software companies were just cutting their teeth. Luckily in today’s competitive market, SaaS vendors are well aware of the power of customer interaction and the power of user testimony.
Read up on customer reviews and product testimonies to gauge how well a BPM vendor coaches its customer, or be upfront about it during the buying stage. It will give a clear idea of how seriously the vendor takes their customers and what technicalities need to be communicated even after the purchase is sealed.
To really reduce complexity, you don’t want just another application sitting beside the dozen other ones you have. The best BPM solutions will easily integrate with your other software to create a winning solution.
Your enterprise data traverses between system-to-system in order to take a meaningful shape. Make sure the software you are buying can be pre-integrated with major platforms like G Suite, Microsoft Office 365, or AWS, as well as other HRMS and financial software.
Integration is not only limited to interoperability with other applications but also ensures data safety and migration. For example, when KiSSFLOW offers easy integration with OneLogin, it gives its users the single sign on (SSO) experience to navigate through different platforms without any hassles or compromise to security.
By definition, a BPM tool is designed to cut down complexity around a business process and add value to it. So it’s ironic when BPM vendors cram too many features into the software or require users to key in programming codes. Unless you have a talented team of programmers who don’t mind coding thousands of lines of scripts to make a workflow run, it’s safer to stick with a tool that allows everyone in your user to play around the system.
For collaboration to happen through a BPM process, select a system that allows every stakeholder to create processes and take control of the steps. The BPM interface should be so easy that even average business users with no background in coding should be able to run the process by toggling the buttons in the dashboard.
A BPM software that forces its users to map processes in flowcharts and notation is as bad as the software that requires users to code a lot.
These visual designers are well-intentioned, but the interface still requires users to think like a machine using heavy logic. It lacks human-centric process mapping because users are expected to use the right notation at the right step and think of all possible events after a step is complete.
What a good BPM tool does instead is it allows users to diagram processes from their point of view in an easy to follow a visual model. The designer should speak with users in the language they understand.
When the average users take up a workflow, they can just create a process that has a simpler and linear appearance instead of a maze of Yes/No flowchart.
No one is looking for a BPM system that makes things more complex around the office, but that’s often what you get. Businesses often have to spend a considerable amount of time and money just ironing out the problems that the new BPM software creates.
Make sure the tool you use will be simple for users to adopt, right from day one. Try KiSSFLOW to see just how easy BPM can be.