Put people at the heart of business process management (BPM)
When it’s successful, business process management (BPM) is about building and sustaining process improvements. It’s much more than just technology – it’s teams of people, motivated by committed leaders, working together to continuously find better ways of doing things.
Business process management treats business processes as a key knowledge asset of your organization. If this asset is not easy to use, manage and improve by business teams, it will not deliver optimal value to the business.
At Promapp, we believe that process improvement is a team effort and that everyone across the business should be able to contribute.
Business process management benefits
When everyone understands the preferred and agreed way of doing things, there are less errors, less rework and better delivery. This means better, consistent execution.
The benefits of an accessible, up-to-date, easy-to-understand process knowledge base means you can:
Deliver a better customer experience
- By driving improved process execution, you are more likely to deliver a more consistent level of service.
The result is happier customers – your customer service will be more efficient and more consistent, no matter who is serving the customer.
Increase efficiency and productivity
- Better execution means less time spent identifying, investigating and responding to issues caused by process breakdowns.
- New staff are more productive, faster. And they learn the correct way to do things right from the start.
Essential intellectual capital remains within your organization, even if key staff move on. Process knowledge should grow over time rather than erode
Simplify risk and compliance management
- The better you understand a process, the better you can predict and overcome its weaknesses.
- Simplify audits, compliance and certification.
- Eliminate the costly, time-consuming cycle of large scale ‘catch-up’ initiatives.
Improve quality and consistency
- Simple, standardized processes result in less errors and reduced rework, and in some cases reduced full time equivalent (FTE) requirements.
- With clear ownership and accountability, staff can create, use and update their own process documents. It’s easy for them to identify and implement opportunities for improvement in their day-to-day work.
Drive improved benefits realization on projects. After project implementations, without clearly defined and communicated processes, achieving true improvements and effective changes in the way you work are left to chance.
- Current, standardized processes don’t just help staff get it right the first time.
They also make it easier to identify areas in your business where you’re wasting time or money, or where processes - and work - are repeated.
Increase business agility
- Dynamic processes let you react faster to changing market conditions. Get ahead by letting your processes live, breathe and evolve on a central online repository.
- Driving change in your business is easier - and faster - when everyone has accurate, up-to-date process information at their fingertips.
Business process management is good for business. By engaging their teams, organizations can see their process improvement efforts go from strength to strength, and can reap the rewards of their investment in business process management.
Top 5 critical factors for successful business process management (BPM)
At a recent Promapp CONNECT event, our clients shared 15 main reasons their business process management efforts have succeeded, together with their tips on what they did:
Get active and visible leadership from your Chief Process Officer (CPO)
Tip: It is 100% critical to name your Chief Process Officer (CPO) - the closer they are to CEO level, the better.
Tip: It's the CPO’s job to win and retain the support of business teams, so they need to buy into the importance of process improvement.
Tip: Your CPO is likely to be very busy, which may make them look resistant to change, so do what you can to support them in their role.
Involve the teams who do the work
Tip: Write up the high-level version of your organization’s business processes - if you leave teams to start from scratch with process capture they may flounder, and if you do the work for them, you'll get no engagement at all.
Tip: Leave teams to edit and improve the high-level processes to fine-tune them and make them their own.
Tip: Do a cross-functional walk-through where someone outside of the process literally walks through your captured procedure, applies your logic and gives valuable insights on their experience.
Share your process wins
Tip: Get your CPO to announce wins, to show exec support for your process improvement culture.
Tip: Create opportunities to celebrate process successes and share the benefit to the organization.
Tip: ‘Bribe’ teams with small rewards like cake and pizza to add a sense of occasion to your celebrations.
Keep it simple
Tip: Make your teams aware that simple, engaging processes are more likely to be used.
Tip: Upskill your teams on how to create engaging processes.
Tip: Encourage feedback on current processes so they’re always up-to-date and reflect what is actually happening in your business.
Appoint a dedicated process champion
Tip: A process champion is the most common factor amongst those clients with the best process culture. Nominate someone who is passionate about business process management and the role that engaged teams can play in its success.
Tip: Your process champion should have at least part of their 'day job' dedicated to coordinating process improvement initiatives.
Tip: Track the performance of your business process management efforts and report back to the executive team to prove the benefit of this FTE investment.