Saturday, July 2, 2011

BPM’s Rocky Road

“We can't solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.”  
Albert Einstein

“About 68% of BPM Project Failed” according to reputable IT media and consulting companies, on the other hands, BPM is always at the top list of the most effective CIO’s agenda,  by digging into 4 WHATs below, hopefully, we could inspire more innovative thinking about BPM, and with systematic approaches to conquer it.

 1. What is BPM?

From WikipediaBusiness process management (BPM) is a holistic management approach focused on aligning all aspects of an organization with the wants and needs of clients. It promotes business effectiveness and efficiency while striving for innovation, flexibility, and integration with technology. BPM attempts to improve processes continuously. It can therefore be described as a "process optimization process." 

The other nice quote such as:
  •  BPM is to separate the knowing from flowing
  • BPM is management discipline, not just technology
  • BPM succeeds when it is integrated with BI, EA and PPM 
  • BPM provides a foundation that brings visibility, enables compliance, reduces errors and avoids cost, all important elements to the survival of an enterprise 
  • Don’t treat BPM as one-time project, it’s continuous improvement 
  • BPM delivers enough savings to not only survive and thrive, but also to capitalize on bad condition
Four Crowns of BPM: Philosophy, Methodology,  Technology , and Execution

Three Categories of BPM: People Centric, Process Centric and Document Centric

2. What are the top 10 costliest pitfalls to implement BPM?

1)     Start with too large and ambitious BPM initiatives
2)     Lack of process mindset, even start small, still need holistic view, than muddle in pocket.
3)      Insufficient executive sponsorship
4)      BPM Roadmap & Blueprint
5)      BPM initiatives not managed by CoE, or no CoE at all.  
6)       Lack of commitment to the involvement of all stakeholders such as customers, vendors
7)       Lack of commitment of resources and time to education & communication cross silos
8)      Lack of governance and KPI monitoring
9)      Fail to introduce the cultural change or change management initiative
10)  A right BPM tool was not chosen –Not every project need a hammer, sometimes, a ruler is more effective

3. What’re the top three principles to tame the BPM beast?

Beyond avoiding the top ten costliest pitfalls we list above, the best scenario to implement BPM should focus on three fundamentals:

People:  Build up the centralized CoE BPM, with effective executive support and project owner, and establish the competitive BPM team including such as business visionary, BPM evangelist, business expert/analyst, technology implementer, customers, and vendors., etc, also build up BPM communities to initiate both formal and informal communication,  exchange the status and wisdom, extend the process mindset and support.

Process: Blueprint the process framework to manage the process, it may include the business/enterprise architecture, BPM roadmap, governance model, strategic planning such as value chain and scenario analysis,  build up the solid milestones and timelines, orchestrate both continuous improvement and process innovation, to accelerate BPM delivery into BPM transformation.

Methodology & Tools:
Beyond BPM/BPMS pairing up, BPM will be successful when it is integrated with EA, BI, PPM., SOA seamlessly, some other tools may include the latest project management methodology such as Agile or Scrum, or Lean/Six Sigma.
But remember, keep it simple with the right tools, don’t add complexity for technology’s sake.

4. What’s the next generation of BPM?

Today’s BPM is more process automation focus, the next generation of BPM should be more business transformation oriented-digitization, globalization, or decentralization, these are organization’s new DNA in 21st century.

Social BPM –Enterprise 2.0 technology such as social/mobile computing and analytics tools will help expand the enterprise boundary, to establish the networked organization which are more proactively engage not only the cross-functional employees, but also customers and partners, BPM becomes both the art and science to read customers mind, and create partner’s synergy .

Cloud BPM –Cloud computing from SAAS, PAAS, IAAS to BPAAS (Business Process as Service) is surely revitalizing both BPM’s delivery model and BPM vendors' landscape, process–on-the fly crafts the new  fashion for enterprise to deliver the agility and dynamic to fit in today’s hyper-competitive economic reality, to gain the competitive edge, process-effectiveness and cost efficiency

The next generation of BPM will be customer-driven, simple and transparent, becomes the  invisible backbone of instant-on enterprise.

Chang = Hope   Change = Yes, We Can                    
President Obama


Nice article. Can you throw some more light on "People Centric, Process Centric and Document Centric" processes?

Your articles are great. We would love if you can contribute some articles on

Abhishek Mishra

Hi, Abhishek, thanks for the comment, also take a look at bpmgeek, nice content with collective wisdom, would contribute some there, welcome your further thoughts, thanks.

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