Business Process Management And Deploying BPM Software
Business Process Management (BPM) has come of age since it became in vogue during the Nineties, and with huge strides in technology, BPM software solutions have become more common. That said, traditional BPM software tends to be a high risk, major cost and lengthy deployment project in its own right. It is not unusual for a traditional BPM deployment to last several years, and encounter numerous delays and obstacles along the way.
A major problem with traditional, big-name BPM suites is that they are extremely heavy on their need for developer and IT resources. This then leads to a technical team leading the deployment, with the business operations people acting in reserve as stakeholders. But this is the wrong way around – the operations people are the ones closest to the actual heart of the business, and they know the processes better than most anyone else.
On the other hand, the IT team leading the deployment have the unenviable task of interpreting what business operations really want, and then tie those requirements in to what they can actually do. Trade-offs are inevitable, and it is common for the technical constraints to impose a restricted delivery of stated requirements, and more than this, to have the business operations people placed into a strait jacket.
In short, business processes are forced to follow what can be technically deployed and by the restrictions implicit in the BPM solution itself. This is allowing the tail to wag the dog, when it really ought to be business operations being served by the technical team and software solution.
Lean BPM – Low Code Business Process Management Software
One of the major changes in technology and approach to BPM deployments has been the development of low code or Lean BPM. Lean BPM software is a stripped down version of the big, traditional software solutions. It is a practical fact that most of the functionality of a traditional BPM suite is not used by customers, except only in the most extreme circumstances. Practically, a full tool suite offered by a traditional solution is simply not required, or better, the benefits do not outweigh the cost and pain of deployment and operation.
More than this, Lean BPM solutions are now capable (in some instances) of doing what traditional BPM cannot: removing the need for the IT team and putting design decisions into the hands of business operations.
By providing an all-in-one solution which delivers required functionality, Lean BPM provides any company looking to deploy a BPM solution with the ability to do so at a greatly reduced cost, and in a fraction of the time. It is not unusual for a Lean BPM solution to cost only as much as 20-30% of the cost of the big provider solutions. In addition, deployment is measured in days, with operational workflows and business processes deployed shortly thereafter.
Finally, Lean BPM also allows for business processes to be created on the fly, with the low code BPM software pushing workflows live by automatically creating tasks, assignees and following procedural rules to ensure compliance.
Jane Wrythe is a Project Management and Business Process Management writer, who is currently working on online collaboration and Lean BPM tools such as JobTraQ.