Business Process Management – Overview

Manish Nepal

March 31st, 2018 BPM  

Business Process Management essentially means how a company repeatedly transforms data or objects within its processes, from X to Y and thereby improves its operations through better process design, modeling, analysis, and execution.

What is Business Process Management (BPM)?

Business Process Management is the process of analyzing and improving business processes to create a more efficient and effective organization. Business process management is neither task management or project management (although it can occur within the context of a project). BPM is focused more on repetitive and ongoing processes that follow a predictable pattern.

Okay, so what is a business process?

A business process is any sequence of events or tasks that must be performed for a business to operate. For example, a customer’s purchase resulting in a delivery is a key business process that exists in all for-profit organizations. To know more about business process, the steps to define it and the examples of a business process, check out this post.

So, wait, is this like task management with Trello and Asana?

Not really. Task management is about handling or organizing a set of activities that arise out of a project. These projects are often one-time and non-repeatable. When these projects are well-organized like in a construction work, a project management software like ‘Microsoft Project’ is used. Trello and Asana are good tools for managing tasks in ad-hoc projects.

Learn more about Project vs. Process vs. Task Management

Why Does BPM Matter?

Every organization has its own set of business processes, that, when not systematized, leads to a lot of mayhem. This is because, a process consists of multiple tasks that go from person to person and hence makes it hard, to get a holistic view of the process, as such.

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.

Business Process Management Life Cycle:

bpm (business process management) life cycle

Step 1: Design the process in its ideal state and examine all the conditions that need to be built.

Step 2: Model the process using a business process management software.

Step 3: Execute the process, or put a system in place.

Step 4: Monitor the system and gather data about how it is functioning.

Step 5: Business Process Optimize and make changes to the process to improve it.

What are the various types of business process management?

BPM systems can be categorized based on the purpose that they serve. Here are the 3 types of business process management:

Integration-centric BPM:

This type of business process management system mainly focuses on integrating with the existing systems you have like HRMS, CRM and ERP. A smooth integration is something which every BPM software in the market is faced with and this kind of business process management solves it, as it’s primary focus lies on the same.

Human-Centric BPM:

There are few BPM software out there whose primary purpose is to route the tasks in a business process via every person who is involved in completing the process. Their focus lies on getting the tasks done by the stakeholders at the right time. A typical use case of this type of business process management tool would be an approval process.

Document-Centric BPM:

Such business process management solutions are required when document is the heart of the process. They enable routing, formatting, verifying and getting the document signed, as the tasks pass along the workflow.

An ideal BPM (Business Process Management) system should incorporate each of these aspects.

What are the benefits of incorporating BPM into a business?

The application of business process management (BPM) has helped millions of businesses around the world take control of chaotic processes and streamline their workflows in a very time-effective way. For instance, leaders in worldwide logistics can benefit from BPM to track shipments, manage customer feedback, handle transit red-tapism, and ensure timely deliveries.

The mapping of a business process management (BPM) typically flows through a five-step process, i.e. designing, modeling, executing, monitoring, and optimizing. A BPM software helps businesses create, map, analyze, and improve their business processes.

Implemented well, business process management (BPM) can take care of an entire business process lifecycle. Not only does this help enterprises run their everyday operations more efficiently, but it helps them realize their bigger organizational goals over a desired period of time.

Simply put, business process management is a method to improve tangled operations and optimize them so that they can focus more on their deliverables and less on the hurdles along the way. This is the reason why business process management is hailed as a booming market in both the technology and service sectors.

Business process management is dependent on the methodology that you’re using, as well as the tool that you’re using to execute that methodology. Depending on the particular methodology that you’re using, your requirements for the tool that you need will be drastically different. That’s because BPM software like KiSSFLOW isn’t one-size-fits-all. They’re all catered to specific use cases, and the only way to know if it’s right for you is to actually give it a try or ask for a demo from the vendor. This gives you an idea of what to expect when you’re in the market for a BPM software.

Because they’re not one-size fits all, there’s a fair bit of research when it comes to buying something that’s suited for your organization. You don’t want to buy something that doesn’t suit your needs.

This means that you need to understand what a good business process management system should have, and what you should be looking for. This lets you know what’s on the market from different vendors, and what will fit your requirements.

Business Process Management Examples:

HR:

Have you ever felt your organization’s on-boarding process is too complex and chaotic? Is your HR department asking the candidates to fill out paper forms that makes them exhausted? This is because your HR department lacks the principle of Business Process Management (BPM). Applying business process management, helps you automate your HR processes end-to-end, thereby cutting down on cost, time and paper forms. Given below are a couple of examples as to how BPM helps your HR department to improve their processes:

Sales:

In most organizations, the sales team spends significant amount of time in coordinating with the Accounts Receivable (AR) team, to get the sales invoices approved. Even a small typo in the invoices, botches up the lives of the salespeople. This is where BPM comes into picture, since it automates the invoice approval process, thereby eliminating the chances of manual errors and the back and forth clarifications between the salespeople and the AR team. Given below are a couple of scenarios in the sales department, where BPM can help them streamline their processes:

Finance:

Finance team is the one that is bombarded with paper forms and emails everyday, since anything that involves money has to go through them. For instance, if the asset management team wants to purchase 50 laptops, they send the quotation that they received from the vendor to the finance team, for them to approve it. This is just one case. Imagine, how many such emails or paper forms they would be receiving on a daily basis from various teams. Without a system in place, it’ll be cumbersome for them to manage all of these. The one that helps them manage these processes is essentially the business process management (BPM) system. Given below are a couple of scenarios in the finance department, where BPM comes as a saving grace:

So it’s a lot of technology and software, right?

Usually, yes. Business process management (BPM) system can get quite complex. There are many options, but the most sophisticated ones often require special certification to implement and manage. The software can help in mapping, creating, analyzing, monitoring, and improving business processes.

Sounds like it’s going to cost a lot of money.

Yup. A typical project requires licensing the business process management software, hiring a consultant to set it up for you, and training your staff. Costs can easily range from $250,000 to $500,000, and that isn’t including the amount of time your internal team needs to spend to create and modify the processes.

Okay, see you later.

Wait! KiSSFLOW is a Business Process Management (BPM) Software that is priced at just $9/user/month.

That’s ridiculous. How are you making any money? What’s the catch?

We did three things. First, KiSSFLOW is designed for the 99% of business processes that are straightforward and easy to draw out on a napkin. The software platform you need for these processes doesn’t have to be so heavy-duty.

Second, we made the process design so stinking easy that you would never need to pay for a high-priced consultant to set it up for you. We’re always just a simple call away, but most users are able to create their own workflows without any help.

Third, we made it try-and-buy. This means we removed a ton of costs related to selling that is often loaded into the price. We make good software. You try it. If you like it, you buy it. All the money we save reduces sales costs that are passed on to you.

…and, just for kicks, we still put in all the awesome data-tracking features the high-priced options have.

Well, that’s nice!

Glad you thought so. Why don’t you give it a try? There’s a free 7-day trial. Pick a process that has been hard to automate in your company and see how easy it can be.

#1 BPM Tool, Trusted by 10,000+ Companies

No Coding. Drag & Drop. Publish in 5 Minutes.