What is Business Process Management?

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What is Business Process Management (BPM)?

What is business process management? Business Process Management (BPM) is a crucial strategy for companies looking to maximize the effectiveness of their operations and cut down costs. It involves the use of various software applications to manage, automate and optimize existing processes from end to end. 

BPM involves analyzing, modeling, redesigning, measuring, monitoring and controlling business processes to achieve organizational goals. BPM helps companies to improve efficiency, effectiveness, agility and cost savings while enhancing customer satisfaction. As stated in CEOWorld, “BPM is often used in the context of process improvement initiatives, such as Six Sigma and Lean. However, BPM can also be used to design and implement new processes, as well as to streamline and automate existing ones.”

With BPM, your organization can identify and eliminate waste, bottlenecks and redundancies within its processes. BPM also enables your company to automate and standardize its processes, fostering consistency across your organization. An important aspect of BPM is continuous improvement, which ensures that your business processes remain optimized over time. 

A well-implemented business process management system, often enhanced with a digital transformation strategy, aligns with the broader business strategy and ensures that the company’s operations are in line with its overall goals and objectives.

Additionally, the BPM process allows for better control and oversight of critical business processes, reducing the risk of errors and delays. In today’s fast-paced business environment, BPM is becoming increasingly important for organizations that want to remain competitive and agile.

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A Roadmap for Business Performance Improvement Guide

This guide provides you with a roadmap for implementing process improvement programs to drive business performance improvement.


Business Process Automation (BPA) vs Business Process Management (BPM): Key Differences

Two terms that are often used in this context are Business Process Automation (BPA) and Business Process Management (BPM). While these terms share some similarities, there are fundamental differences between the two.

BPA and BPM are two distinct concepts, although they are closely related and often used alongside each other within the context of a business.

Business process automation (BPA) is the use of technology and project management to streamline and automate complex business processes, thereby improving business outcomes. These processes may include everything from data entry and customer service to inventory management and order fulfillment. In contrast, Business Process Management involves a more comprehensive approach to managing and improving all aspects of a business process.

Both approaches have their benefits and drawbacks and choosing the right one for your organization depends on a variety of factors.

Ultimately, both BPA and BPM aim to make your business more efficient, productive and profitable.

what is business process management

Here are some key differences between the two concepts:

1.      Objective

One of the key differences between Business Process Automation and Business Process Management lies in their objectives. 

BPM attempts to increase process productivity, operational quality and cost effectiveness by giving an overall picture of all activities engaged in the business process.

BPA is concerned with the automation of repetitive manual tasks across a wide range of business processes inside a company.

2.      Scope 

BPA involves automating repetitive and routine tasks in an organization to improve efficiency and productivity. It focuses on optimizing specific processes within a department or a single process within a system. On the other hand, BPM focuses on managing the entire business process from end to end. It involves analyzing, designing, implementing, monitoring and continuously improving a range of processes across various departments to achieve strategic business objectives. The implementation of BPM is often guided by business rules, which help ensure compliance and consistency throughout the process.

Compared to BPA, BPM has a broader scope and demands a more comprehensive understanding of the organization’s workflows and objectives. It involves collaboration among different stakeholders, including management, employees, customers, suppliers and partners. 

In essence, while BPA seeks to automate workflows within specific departments or systems, BPM takes a more holistic approach to streamline processes, by any means, across the entire organization.

3.      Time Required for Execution

BPA involves automating specific tasks within a business process, which eliminates the need for human intervention and speeds up the process overall. Because the focus is on a single process at a time, it means that the time required for process execution is greatly reduced.

BPM focuses on the overall management of a business process from start to finish, including the identification, definition, implementation and monitoring of the process. While BPM can result in more streamlined and efficient processes, it takes longer to implement, due to the comprehensive nature of the management involved. 

4.      Human Involvement

BPA aims to reduce human intervention by replacing manual tasks with automated ones. BPM aims to manage and optimize business processes with human collaboration. 

Business process automation streamlines repetitive and mundane tasks, freeing up employees to focus on more strategic activities. On the other hand, business process management involves ongoing analysis and improvement of processes, involving humans at every stage to ensure that the business processes align with the organization’s goals. 

Human involvement is critical in business process management, since it requires analyzing data, identifying bottlenecks, devising new strategies and evaluating the impact of change, all of which require expert human judgment. 

5.      Technology Usage

While BPA focuses primarily on using technology to automate repetitive and mundane tasks, BPM is a more comprehensive framework that encompasses all aspects of process improvement, including strategy, design, execution, monitoring and continuous improvement.

In other words, BPA represents a subset of BPM that leverages business automation technologies to streamline manual processes and reduce human intervention. Thus, BPM utilizes and leverages technology as an enabler of process excellence, often through the use of enterprise resource planning (ERP) software in managing processes. This provides a comprehensive approach to optimize business operations through the effective use of process models, performance metrics, governance structures and collaboration tools. 

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What are the Various Types of Business Process Management Systems?

There are various types of BPM systems available on the market today, each with its own unique set of features and capabilities. Understanding the various types of BPM tools is essential for selecting the right one for your organization, streamlining your workflows, and improving your overall operational efficiency.

Several types of BPM solutions exist, including process modeling tools, business activity monitoring (BAM) systems, and workflow automation platforms. These technologies enable teams to map out their workflows better, identify bottlenecks, monitor key performance indicators (KPIs), and automate repetitive tasks.

Some software may also integrate with other enterprise systems, such as customer relationship management (CRM) or enterprise resource planning (ERP) software, to provide a more comprehensive view of business operations.

Some of the most common types of BPMS include:

1.      Integration-Centric BPM

Integration-centric BPM is one of various methods of business process management that helps businesses integrate their various software systems and applications seamlessly. It is an approach that focuses on managing business processes through efficient integration techniques. 

To build quick and effective business processes, integration-centric business process management software offers wide integrations and API access. The primary purpose of this type of BPM is to facilitate seamless communication between multiple systems, departments and processes. This leads to greater process efficiency, better collaboration, faster process execution and improved decision-making. 

This approach is especially beneficial for large organizations dealing with complex infrastructures and involving multiple platforms and software programs. 

2.      Document-Centric BPM

Document-centric BPM refers to a business process management approach in which document handling and management form the core of the workflow. It is a type of BPM that focuses on processes that do not require much human involvement.  It focuses on managing and optimizing the flow of documents throughout the entire business process. 

Document-centric is significant because document management is essential to almost every business process, ranging from contract management, workflow management, invoice processing and human resource management to customer relationship management. By adopting this approach, your business is able to automate and streamline its operations to reduce manual intervention, minimize errors and improve compliance, all while saving time and money. 

This type of BPM involves several activities such as document capture, storage, indexing, retrieval and distribution. To effectively manage the documents, it utilizes business process management tools and workflow management automation tools, tracking and reporting technologies.

This kind of BPM is most effective within manufacturing organizations that must track documents, whether for safety or for quality standards, such as food and beverage manufacturing and medical device manufacturing.

3.      Human-Centric BPM

Human-centric BPM is a type of business process management that emphasizes the role of people in the organization. It recognizes that employees are not just cogs in a machine, but rather, they are business users who are the driving force behind the success of any business. As such, human-centric processes place a premium on employee engagement and empowerment, with the goal of creating a more fulfilling and satisfying work environment for everyone involved. 

This type of BPM involves managing tasks through the use of technology to support and enhance the work of employees, rather than replacing them with automated systems or automated business processes. Human-Centric BPM puts people at the center of all decision-making processes and encourages collaboration and communication between employees and management. 

By prioritizing employee engagement and empowerment, human-centric BPM aims to create a work environment that is not only fulfilling and satisfying but also adds greater business value to the entire process.

Are looking to learn more about what is business process management? Take your business to the next level with BPM, Ultra Consultants is here to help. Get started by scheduling your free discovery call today. 

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