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BPM essential in helping companies avoid waste

Malcolm Ross, Senior Vice President, Product Strategy, Appian
February 25, 2013

Wasteful operational processes are becoming a common characteristics among many organizations. Business process management software can go a long way toward helping companies streamline their day-to-day functions and develop more efficient work strategies.

Improving business process execution and organizational structuresis emerging as a vital need for many companies. The problem of operational waste is so great that industry expertMac McConnell said he is surprised that many businesses are still viable enterprises. In an interview with Customer Think, McConnell explained that BPM software can play a vital role in dealing with the problem of waste.

Understanding flaws in traditional business models

McConnell told the news source that organizations running with departmental silos, hierarchical operational schemes and almost continual collaboration plans are often so wasteful that they use too manyresources to sustain operations.

"The 21st century organization can be a highly dysfunctional and wasteful entity. I don't think the challenges have changed much in 2012, but the impact of this dysfunction is more acute," McConnell told Customer Think. "The 'great recession' saw a long period of organizational contraction. People lost their jobs. Technology investments were deferred or canceled. Management consultants were not consulted. As organizations begin to embrace growth again (not a universal phenomenon), a new challenge arises. How do we waste less time, opportunities, and knowledge?"

According to McConnell, removing waste within organizations is necessary in response to economic conditions and a growing move toward better operational practices. Business process innovation is essential within this environment, making BPM software and similar solutions an integral part of innovation in the enterprise. The transition toward process-focused functions, particularly those that create better audit trails and support regulatory compliance alongside operational gains, is becoming an extremely active area for discussions in North America and Europe.

Using BPM to support better operations

Many experts agree that a significant number of businesses are looking to IT innovation as a path to better enterprise operations. Technology can enable better processes, reducing waste and helping organizations take full advantage of their resources. However, technological innovation does not immediately translate to more efficient operations. Instead, new capabilities enabled by IT innovation have to be coupled with better processes to align IT and business functionality. BPM software provides the process automation and integration capabilities needed to take the ideal of data-focused operations and make it a functional reality in corporate settings.

Malcolm Ross

Vice President of Product Marketing