Business process management more essential than ever
In today's difficult economy of tightening budgets and increasing competition, the need for effective business process management (BPM) has never been higher.
This is the view of Yugan Munthrie, employee engagement practice head at global IT consultancy Mint Management Technologies. He said BPM plays a key role in boosting productivity by eliminating the risk and cost of inadvertent duplication of tasks and efforts across the organisation.
A lack of process governance managed centrally through BPM disciplines and technology could have significant consequences for businesses.Yugan Munthrie
He was commenting on a Forrester Research report that indicated BPM software might have passed its sell-by date, The Forrester 2015 Global Business Technographics Software Survey found 36% of the almost 1 000 global participants were either thinking about, or planning to replace BPM with another product. Less than one-third were considering implementing BPM software in the future, with many BPM products being put on hold or cancelled.
In addition, Forrester's 2016 Digital Business Automation Survey found that while cost reduction and productivity had been the two most important business process improvement considerations of 30% and 22% of executives respectively in 2014, by 2016 cost reduction had dropped to third place (13%) and productivity to just 9%.
However, Munthrie said BPM was essential to enable process governance - and process governance was essential to reduce costs, automate processes and boost productivity.
"A lack of process governance managed centrally through BPM disciplines and technology could have significant consequences for businesses.
"It results not only in people across an organisation doing the same task in different ways, but also in the duplication and triplication of the same work, causing deadlines to be missed while driving up costs," he explained.
"For example, department one may send their leave applications to the HR department on an e-mail; department two will complete an Excel form and send it via e-mail; and department three will print out the form and hand-deliver it. The result is the same, but the process is being handled in three different ways. The HR department now has to spend time consolidating the three different ways in which the applications have been made - leaving ample room for human error to creep in, or applications to fall through the cracks."
BPM no longer requires implementation by a person with technical expertise.Yugan Munthrie
With central process governance in place, one person or function would ideally own a process (such as leave applications), and would ensure every person or department throughout the organisation utilises the same process.
According to Munthrie, advances in BPM technology have made its adoption by organisations of all sizes considerably easier than in the past.
"BPM no longer requires implementation by a person with technical expertise. The days of processes being documented by business analysts and implemented by developers are disappearing. With technology such as Nintex, business analysts can actually create the form, map the business processes and implement them themselves," he concluded.