Top BPM Tools – Comparison and Features

Manish Nepal

April 7th, 2018 BPM  

BPM has bloomed into an accepted management discipline and its significance in the automation-centric corporate economy of today is undeniable. Without an able BPM software to apply to your business, processes become chaotic and can lead to disastrous consequences.

As the discipline matured, a number of BPM tools have emerged to allow organizations to take advantage of the benefits of BPM (cost savings, reduced errors, faster processing time).

The problem with BPM tools is that it can be difficult to find something suited for your use. Online BPM tools are a dime a dozen, and it’s no easy feat to find something that fit your use case.

What Should You Look for in Business Process Management (BPM) Tools?

The shopping list for BPM tools can be long and varied, depending on the needs of a business.

When BPM tools first emerged, the requirements were largely on how robust the platform was and if it could handle the complexities of a workflow engine. However, needs have changed. Now, most BPM systems can handle the complexity you need, and the new key features for business process management tools involve being user-friendly, built on the cloud, and well-integrated with other applications.

G2 Crowd, an independent peer review platform does a great job at segmenting BPM software tools, depending on the kind of organization. These are their top BPM tools on the market.

BPM Tools Comparison Chart:

Here are some of the top 5 BPM tools according to G2 Crowd:

  • ProcessMaker – An open-source BPM and workflow management solution. Design, automate, and deploy business processes and workflows.
  • Zoho Creator – A low-code app development platform designed to help users build applications for mobile, tablet and web on an enterprise-grade level.
  • KiSSFLOW – BPM and workflow management software used to create business applications. Web-based platform described as intuitive and easy to use.
  • Nintex – Nintex Workflow enables digital transformation through process automation; can work with Microsoft Office365, SharePoint, and Project Server.
  • Bizagi – 3-pronged solution: Bizagi Modeler, Bizagi Studio and Bizagi Engine. A rapid, enterprise-grade process automation solution.

We’ve taken these top 5 business process management tools and provided some more information about each of them to help you make the best decision.

Brand Name Popular With Process Design Operational Ease Pricing Support
Nintex SMBs, enterprise Browser-based intuitive design On-prem By quote None (open-sourced)
Process Maker Corporations, governments, and organizations looking for an enterprise scale BPMN 2.0 Different editions of on-prem and cloud Starts at $1000/month (unlimited users) Video documentation, email, webinars, instant chat
KiSSFLOW SMBs, mid-market Human-centric drag and drop interface Cloud-based $9/user/month (or) 7-day free trial Video documentation, email, webinars, instant chat
Bizagi SMBs, medium businesses, enterprises Bizagi BPMN Modeler Cloud hosted/on-prem Perpetual user license for $800/year+$134 maintenance fee (or)
1-year user license for $311/year
Basic for free (with no SLAs) or premium support at an extra cost
Zoho Creator Freelancers, small- and mid-size businesses, and enterprise Script builder to drag and drop snippets of code Web-based, on prem, or can be self-hosted $5-$15/user/month (depending on license plans) Email, phone, training, ticket escalation

Although we are admittedly partial, KiSSFLOW gives its users a clean slate to drag and drop forms, add formulas and conditions, create parallel branches, and do much more for automating approval requests. Trust Radius, another review site, lists KiSSFLOW as the highest-rated BPM tool.

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Picking the Right BPM Tool

You’ll want to make sure your BPM tools have these 10 fundamental features, but there are other questions you need to ask as well.

What problems do you want to solve?

Are you looking to speed up processes? Digitize forms? Reduce errors? What are the problems you have, and how specifically do you want a BPM tool to solve it?

Is your process human-centric or system-centric? Certain business process management tools can work with tasks primarily carried out by humans. Others take care of tasks done by machines, software, or systems. Do you need a BPM system that’s easy for users, or easy for programmers?

Who will be responsible for the processes? Do you plan to keep control within the IT team and analysts, or are you wanting to open it up to the whole company?

What is your expected ROI from BPM? Some BPM systems have a lot of advanced features that come at a high cost. If you are trying to be realistic in the cost of BPM, stay away from very expensive BPM tools.

Do you have any unique, proprietary needs? Many cloud-based, off-the-shelf BPM tools are so dynamic and flexible that they fit 99% of business requirements. However, if your business has complicated compliance or special proprietary requirements, you should look for bespoke business process management tools.

Where Can You Find the Best Business Process Management Tools?

With so many BPM software vendors vying for the buyers’ attention identifying the best BPM tool can be confusing.

From blogs to review sites to infographics, most information on process management tools is sponsored by some BPM vendor. So, do your best to avoid obvious propaganda disguised as objective reviews.

Benefits of Deploying BPM Tools

We’ve told you what BPM tools can do for you. We’ve shown you examples of what they can do. But what we haven’t mentioned are the real world, tangible benefits that BPM tools have.

    • Improved Agility – BPM tools let business users add, modify, and delete processes as and when required, dynamically. This lets you become adaptable to unpredictable situations.
    • Reduced Cost – Operating costs are reduced. You won’t have to hire as many staff while scaling as well–that’s lesser resources spent on salaries.
    • Higher Efficiency – No one likes emails, because they’re annoying and cumbersome. BPM tools let you operate on tasks that matter, and ignore the noise of your inbox–this improves employee efficiency.
    • Better Visibility – BPM tools don’t just streamline processes. They’re also helpful in tracking performance of a specific process or employee. They let you see how these processes are functioning in real time. This lets you get an understanding of which processes are working well, and which need improvement or abandonment.
    • Sustainability – Hiring more employees isn’t always the solution. It’s expensive, employees take time to be productive, and it can be confusing when you grow to a huge size. BPM tools let you mitigate some of that through automation. Letting your existing employees be more productive lets them focus on the tasks that matter, and automate the tasks that don’t need active intervention.

Will the Perfect BPM Tool Solve All Problems?

Choosing the right BPM software isn’t a magic bullet. You still need to put in the work of analyzing your processes and getting everyone on board. However, once you have a firm grasp on exactly what your company needs, finding the right fit for a BPM system is crucial. Take a look around, but make sure to check out KiSSFLOW for your BPM needs.

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