We’ve all heard the definition of insanity, yeah? Keep doing the same things over & over, expecting different results.
CEOs constantly challenge others to “…improve the bottom line”. Frequently, businesses follow their processes, targets are met, profits are OK, but still the challenge is to deliver more. Sounds like insanity is winning!
When all is said and done, for “things” to change, “something” somewhere has to change. In my experience, BPM & business process improvement, can discover that “something” in a business and often in surprising places.
Every process must deliver results, meet targets, be measured and more and more these days – meet some type of regulatory code. I can see you nodding your head. Surely, all your processes are being measured & monitored? …What’s that? They aren’t? Excellent, theres a fix for that.
If you have a CEO like my example above and you know BPM can help but aren’t sure how sell it or don’t know how to make it a reality, find help. There are key things you can do to sell your idea and they aren’t hard – it’s a matter of being able to identify a problem, quantify the opportunity in terms the C-Level expect (savings) and the proposed “fix”. In essence, its your business case for change.
Sounds easy, right? So what are you waiting for? Go stop the insanity. If you need help, get it, secure your support/funding/whatever you need and then enjoy the journey – what an exciting time. I wish I was there…
When you think BPM, what do you really mean? More jargon? A philosophy? A system? What is BPM?
There’s a heap of vigorous discussions being had the world over, but what it really means, is Business Process Management – a way for a business to know & manage what they do, so that they get the results they expect to get all the time. Whether that means that bills come in, processed & paid correctly and on time, or whether its when the customer comes in, orders their coffee & walks out satisfied that they’ve got the kick-start for their day – they are both processes that someone needs to follow (hopefully) the same way every time & there is (hopefully) someone accountable if things go wrong.
You can never replace the people in process – maybe in the future robots might to some degree – but until then we can only get help for some of the parts of processes – systems & technology can help, or they can really disrupt operations & be a right pain. But readers beware…if your manager comes back from a conference & runs in claiming that “I have seen the future & behold it is good…” then starts regaling you with details of a system they saw & how it will transform the business, that would be a good place to pause. Others might say be afraid…be very afraid.
Please, do yourself a favour – before you start to think about any systems (BPMS), you need to optimise your processes first, or else you may end up automating & delivering a bad result faster than you used to! To do that, you need skilled people to help transform the processes.These can be from within your business, or external experts brought in to help, either way you need these types. You want to know what issue you are trying to fix, how you might measure it, what success looks like, and a lot of other criteria – you can use these as your litmus test for your improved processes.
Think about using experienced experts (aka “process tragics“) – they exist – to help kick start the transformation piece and maybe they’ll suggest automating in small increments, but make sure the experts also impart skills to your own people. After all, you’ll want to keep improving many other processes & you need your own teams to make it become “what they do everyday”. Once you’re doing that, all the time, you’ll find that you truly are living the BPM dream.