What is BPM?


I saw today a LinkedIN Business Process Management Professionals Group post at a discussion group called “People vs Process vs Technology?”

The author of the post put forth various arguments that I related to, except for an “equation for success” that  read  “Motivation=Successful BPM”.

He made a good point that BPM should not be different for different people and I agree with this.

Unfortunately, it’s not my experience that people are aligned with what BPM is. It should be about “business process management” which is the domain of instances of templates but I see so many posts in these discussion groups where the stated object is to improve processes via modeling/simulation.

Modeling/simulation is a reasonable approach for a new process (model/simulate before you build) but in respect of in-use processes it’s easy to demonstrate that the number of test scenarios needed for simulation quickly goes to the hundreds of thousands for any complex process, with the result that any sample data set you might put together is unlikely to allow you to test all eventualities.

For this reason, I maintain that it is important to resort to data mining, the only problem with this being that oftentimes data mining is after-the-fact.   Of course, you have to collect data at process steps or you will end up with nothing to mine.

I favor real-time tracking of instances via in-line run-time compliance checking at key process points so that as and when excursions from any desired state of affairs are detected, process managers hopefully can take action that re-focuses an instance to its goals/objectives.

If you put in place the wherewithal to do this, your data sets for data mining will be a lot “cleaner” and the foundation for this is “better to avoid problems than be faced with fixing problems”.

So, I would adjust the equation to “people+process+technology = successful BPM”

I cannot agree that it’s all about people only nor can I agree that motivation alone could substitute for run-time tracking of activity at process instance steps.

About kwkeirstead@civerex.com

Management consultant and process control engineer (MSc EE) with a focus on bridging the gap between operations and strategy in critical infrastructure protection, healthcare, connect-the-dots law enforcement investigations, job shop manufacturing and b2b organizations. (C) 2010-2017 Karl Walter Keirstead, P. Eng. All rights reserved. The opinions expressed here are those of the author, and are not connected with Jay-Kell Technologies Inc, Civerex Systems Inc. (Canada), Civerex Systems Inc. (USA) or CvX Productions.
This entry was posted in Adaptive Case Management, Business Process Management, Process auditing, Process Mapping and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

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