I borrowed the Latin quote Quo Vadis to this title as it means “Where are you going?” And where is Business Process Management going as it matures as a “teenager” discipline?
When evaluating a Business Process Management (BPM) platform, companies get bombarded with information. Many times information overflow proves to be overwhelming and the overuse of acronyms by vendors and analysts can make the whole thing sound like a science fiction movie. But does it really have to be this way?
The figure above displays more than 20 terms commonly used in the world of BPM.
It’s no wonder that people are confused and frustrated when trying to select vendors. Mr. Customer, your BPM needs are the most important part of your BPM Suite decision. While it is important that your BPM Suite allows you to grow and is also flexible as your needs change, it is important that you to not get caught up in the feature hype.
What are organizations really looking to achieve when selecting a Business Process Management platform? Is it better productivity, visibility, and reporting? Is it reduction of human and system errors while using its current IT systems?
When evaluating a BPM platform, what questions should you really ask?
Here are some suggestions:
1. Does the BPM platform get the tasks to my users on time?
2. Does it help to remind users that they have tasks to tend to?
3. Does it provide managers with visibility about what their team members are working on?
4. Does it provide connectivity to existing data in various systems in the company?
5. Does it provide flexible reporting tools?
6. Is it secure? Encrypted?
7. Does it play well with existing technologies within the organization?
If all the questions above are answered, then the next step is to know how it achieves all of the items above.
Finally, beware of vendors that add “checkmarks” to each of these items. Try to learn how each one of these is addressed by the platform and if it is in line with how your organization conducts business and manages technology.
This whole process doesn’t really have to be rocket science.
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Director, North America Product Management