Business process management (BPM) is defined by the activities involves in an organization that include identification, evaluation and improvement in various processes of a business. It is used in many industries but is most popular amongst the IT industry. Businesses tend to use this action in order to increase customer satisfaction, efficiency, effectiveness and overall performance.
The idea of business process management is to lower, or diminish, errors that are caused by employees in the workforce. Common causes of these errors include miscommunication. It is necessary for employees to understand their various roles in an organization and to be managed accordingly. It is a system of management that is not just another tool or software to use but requires employee’s participation in order to succeed.
A major different between business process management and workflow software is that business process management does not solely use a set of tasks to reach a desirable solution but encourages individuals to continuously contribute to improvements in an organization’s processes as well.
Simply put, business process implies the various stages involved in reaching a specific goal. Either systems or individuals perform the activities involved in the stages. The activities can take place in sequence or at the same time, depending on the issue at hand. It is thought of as the necessary stages in order to adequately perform tasks that need to be done to successfully reach a goal.
There are many processes involved in business process management, some of which are more applicable to certain situations than others. Various processes are typically determined by: time frame, volume, department, difficulty and industry. Not all processes will necessarily be included in order for business process management to reach the goal. There are five main stages of business process management: model, automate, execute, monitor and optimize.
During the first stage of business process management, a model is created as representation. This stage is vital in determining the processes involved in order to reach a goal and allow stages to begin developing, without going into specific detail yet.
The automate phase uses the model and general ideas involved to come up with more detailed directions. This can include instructions, rules and other important aspects of the process.
During the execute phase, the instructions outlined in the automate phase are monitored and evaluated until the entire process is complete.
The monitor phase specifically measures and analyzes the improvements made.
The final stage known as the optimize phase uses the information gathered from the entire process and makes it applicable to situations in the future.
The next article would highlight different types of Business process management systems.
Dr. Shruti Bhat is an award-winning Business Excellence Leader, Global Continuous Improvement Mastermind, Best-selling Author and Speaker. She is Continuous Improvement Advisor to several start-ups, mid-size and growing firms in Canada, USA, India, Africa and Emerging markets. She has authored eight business books and is an invited speaker at several national and international conferences, symposia and workshops.
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