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BPM: A Time of Transition for Digital Transformation

The Business Process Management (BPM) market has been transitioning from traditional back-office operational efficiencies to front-office processes. The primary reasons behind this change are digital transformation and the need to provide applications which engage customers and are convenient for employees to get work done. BPM continues to be the ideal technology to tackle this challenge, because it aligns business and IT in the support of enterprise strategies. Additionally, BPM methodologies are based on Agile, which is focused on delivery of work products for faster feedback through sprints and playbacks. However, it has traditionally been based on Six Sigma modeling techniques which are process-centered. But with the shift to front-office processing, BPM methods and disciplines are evolving to support customer-centered business process transformations. The following are some observations from this transition in BPM for digital transformation:

The Vendor: As previously mentioned, instead of strictly focusing on operational efficiencies, BPM is evolving to support customer engagement initiatives in order to serve, retain and expand customers. According to Forrester Research, 60% of business leaders now prioritize revenue growth and improving customer experience as their top initiatives. Top BPM platform vendors have been transitioning to meet the need for customer-centric business processes and offering various levels of features and functionality within their products. Some of the features that are important for a modern BPM platform include:

  • The ability to build processes focused on data.
  • Enabling rapid delivery of applications through low or no-code platforms. This includes easy configuration and cloud offering in order to quickly turn business ideas into applications.
  • Mobile ready applications supported on the latest devices.
  • Historically, BPM worked great for structured processes but struggled with Ad-Hoc or dynamic processes. As a result, Case Management is a necessary component for BPM platforms.

The Customer: Customer digital experience requires that business processes support end-to-end customer interaction regardless of channel. Customers expect to interact with engaging applications either over the desktop, and are continually connected through mobile devices. As a customer, I should be able to start a process on my mobile device, continue it at my desk on a computer, and complete it over the phone. Improving user experience and providing seamless customer interactions is critical for customer acquisition and retaining existing customers.  Additionally, thanks to websites such as Amazon and Facebook, customers expect the upsell and cross-sell opportunities to be relevant to the context of their interactions. By incorporating Analytics, BPM can be used to make trusted recommendations for customers. Increased customer intimacy = increased revenue!

The Employee: Employees, like customers, have increased expectations from the methods and applications that they use in the workplace due to the technologies and devices they use at home. This Consumerization of IT has created a challenge for employers. Business applications not only need to be innovative, but need to meet these expectations while enforcing rules, policies, regulations, and procedures. Case Management with built-in collaboration is also important to employees because it enables employees to share knowledge which speeds up problem resolution resulting in better customer service.

The Enterprise: The focus on the customer means that organizations need to respond with agility and have a 360-degree view of their customers. Businesses need to quickly adapt to an ever changing market conditions or release of the latest technology gadget. Rapid application delivery that includes mobile and social channels is critical for success. This requires development of powerful applications that are delivered on a variety of channels such as mobile, integrated to social while easy to build, easy to use, and easy to change. One such example is Appian, that has been rated #1 for Business Process Management by Gartner Perficient has domain expertise with industry verticals to successfully deliver enterprise transformations on Appian. The Appian platform infuses an industry-leading BPM engine with modern enterprise technologies such as data management, mobility, case management, and social collaboration for accelerated implementation of complex business operations.  Organizations that can’t keep up are at risk of losing existing revenue streams and business opportunities, but the rewards for organizations that accomplish the adoption of modern BPM are achieving increased revenues, increased growth, increased operational efficiencies, and better customer service.



The Forrester Wave™: BPM Platforms For Digital Business, Q4 2015, by Clay Richardson

Magic Quadrant for Intelligent Business Process Management Suites, Analyst(s): Rob Dunie, W. Roy Schulte, Michele Cantara, Marc Kerremans

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