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BPM offers more than automation

Ben Farrell
January 17, 2013

Business process management software offers organizations the ability to automate their processes and give users streamlined access to data and applications. These automation capabilities are powerful, and can be a major asset for businesses. As a result, it is not uncommon for organizations to focus on automation when deploying BPM solutions and neglect some of the technology's other points. A recent report explained that such a limited view of BPM investments can detract from the overarching benefits of the solution because BPM software is able to offer much more than automation.

Considering BPM for more than automation

Industry expert Peter Murchison told the news source that while automation is a key part of BPM, the overarching gains offered by the technology are maximized when organizations look beyond automation and introduce other elements of the solution.

"Given what BPM does, i.e. blueprint processes, improve process reliability, flexibility, visibility and control, automation is necessary but not sufficient," Murchison told "By choosing automation what one is essentially choosing is consistency. The system will work consistently if the processes are reinforced. Measuring the influence of such an initiative is the main issue CIOs face. Controlling the entire process and making it better is important."

In many cases, IT departments focus heavily on measuring various aspects of operations to improve efficiency. Murchison told the news source that while IT can measure server performance and other aspects of operations, it cannot clearly measure how processes and technologies interact. BPM provides organizations with the ability to more clearly measure their process and evaluate how they are working on a day-to-day basis. As a result, CIOs are able to clearly look at how technological systems respond to business operations and make sure the entire relationship is optimized.

Looking holistically at BPM

Moving beyond automation also involves considering mobile. Murchison told that organizations can use BPM to streamline mobile operations both internally and externally. Further, the technology enables them to more tightly integrate mobile systems with the rest of IT.

When organizations look beyond automation and take a holistic view of BPM, they can realize gains in a variety of operational areas. These range from aligning business and IT to maximizing the value of mobility plans. Many experts agree that the rise of cloud, mobile and social systems are pushing companies to looking broadly at how technology and operations align, making BPM a natural fit in the enterprise.

Ben Farrell

Director of Corporate Communications