Business Process Management (BPM) And Continual Improvement


continual improvement

Remember Activiti BPM? That light-weight Business Process Management (BPM) platform targeted at business people, system admins, and developers. It’s still around along with dozens of alternatives. With so many offerings, it may not make sense going into the weeds with any one technology without introducing a few concepts.

A good place to start is the business process itself. A business process is a series of steps performed by a group of stakeholders to achieve a concrete goal.

One of the key reasons to have a well-defined business process is to prevent chaos from creeping into your day-to-day operations. Implementing business process management also removes the burden of repetitive tasks from your organization.

Business process management is an intentional effort to plan, document, implement, and distribute and organizations business processes. This is also referred to as continual improvement process.

I shouldn’t say this without explanation. Continual improvement is a practice of constantly re-examining how you work to bring ongoing small incremental improvements to work processes. The minor difference is continual improvement is more of a philosophy than a concrete set of tools and techniques. For example, with continual improvement, you’re going to get into improvement methodologies like Kaizen and total quality management (tqm).

Business processes are often broken up into categories. Here are a couple you’ll see most frequently. Operational processes constitute the core business, while supporting processes are put in place to support the core business processes. Operational processes are also sometimes referred to as primary processes.

Business Process Improvement (BPI) is a strategic planning initiative that aims at reshaping business processes based on a number of factors. Business Process Automation (BPA) is a technology-driven strategy to automate a business process in such a way that minimizes cost and time.

The business process management lifecycle features five connected stages. The first stage is design, where business analysts discover and review existing processes and rules and determine whether they align with business goals.

In the model stage, new processes are identified and defines before a representation is made. The execute stage is where process execution takes place.

From there you have the monitor followed by the optimize stage. Once you establish key performance indicators for your processes, this enables you to use the reported performance of your processes as a guide to optimize the processes.

Now that we’ve familiarized ourself with some of the key concepts I mentioned, allow me to share some of the BPM software offerings outside of Activiti to choose form. I will just mention Kissflow, Appian, and Tallyfy. Trust me, there are many more.

References #

  1. Activiti/Activiti. Accessed 6 May 2021.
  2. Business Process - Lifecycle Steps, and Importance. Accessed 6 May 2021.
  3. Business Process Definition. Accessed 6 May 2021.
  4. What is Business Process? Accessed 6 May 2021.
  5. What is Business Process Management? The Key to Enterprise Agility. Accessed 6 May 2021.
  6. Continuous Improvement: Definition, Benefits, and Tools. Accessed 6 May 2021.

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