How to Build a BPM Business Case

Business process management (BPM) is becoming an archetype of successful business operations. Companies use process management to optimize business practices by evaluating existing project controls for efficiency and effectiveness. Meanwhile, the ability to access and benefit from process management is growing easier as more project controls and tools become available through the cloud.

Difficulties may accompany proposals to integrate process management practices in your company. But, the benefits of reorganizing your office through it outweigh such challenges. Since process management enables a higher return on investment (ROI) for projects and data-driven decision making, a key component is best of breed project controls. So, you need to know how to make a strong case for using them.

Why Executives Should Focus on BPM

Process management for business relies on a constant flow of information.Advanced data analytics programs and additional tools analyze the information from this data. In turn, insights can be leveraged to identify what business practices led to better outcomes for projects. Thus, your office can modify these practices to result in additional benefits across other projects. In other words, it makesbest practices repeatable by fostering agile methodologies.

These benefits carry an additional factor for your company. Savings and greater efficiencies found through process management add up to large savings in stakeholder and executive reports. When using process management, meetings with stakeholders can flow more efficiently.

Positive reports to stakeholders and executive-level leadership goes a long way during budget or schedule change-requests.

For example, if a project requires additional funds, having data, a plan and review of why additional funds are needed loops stakeholders more than simply making an open-ended request. This will encourage project success and make your organization stand out when bidding on future projects.

Compiling information to use in process management is not a simple task. Some common challenges to implementing process management in your organization can include the following:

  • Subscribing to BPM tools and resources can have a high initial investment.
  • Integration with existing systems may pose significant issues during launch of process management tools.
  • Privacy and security of servers and business systems may come into question.
  • If an organization uses business intelligence, including making the case for process management might seem redundant.
  • ROI may be difficult to project, and it can be indirect or direct ROI.

But, you can make a successful case for implementing process management in your office.

How to Build Your Business Case For Process Management Implementation

Most businesses face common challenges, including operational efficiency issues, problems interacting with customers and trouble in product and service innovation. But, the key to building a strong business case for process management, explains Oracle, follows three critical steps.

1. Assess Current Process Performance and ROI of Process Management Practices

You cannot improve what you do not understand or realize. Evaluate the effectiveness of your existing processes. In other words, is your organization currently outside of your planned budget? Or, is your project falling behind schedule?

These questions indicate the successes and failures of your current operations. But, you still need to review how they came to fruition. This is where true evaluation begins.

Think back to a time when the way processes were handled in your organization changed. Compare the successes and failures of that period to today. More recent points of comparison will help you see the relative value of managing business processes in your organization.

If your organization experienced an uptick in positive results, such as better schedule and budget adherence, you have proof that process management works. Also, graphic depictions of previous and current values are easier to review among stakeholders and executives, similar to using agile methodology in project controls.

Organizations with little to moderate experience in process management can also assess its maturity by reviewing a few factors. This includes the strategic alignment of your office to company values, how decisions are made, what approaches are used to follow through on decisions, how team members communicate and a measure of the office culture. In other words, does your organization function as a unit with occasional opposing, yet collaborative viewpoints?

2. Create a Solution Footprint and Plan For Implementation

The solution footprint is a plan for how your organization will achieve optimization through better process management. But first, you need to think about where you want your organization to be. Best of breed project controls can help you with this task by laying out how team members and managers work together to meet demands.

For example, a model in Oracle BPMN can lay out and plan how your team interacts during a transaction or activity.

Next, define the solution footprint, which will explain what tools and resources will be needed to achieve the goal of better performance, visibility and alignment with process management goals.  Additionally, the solution footprint provides a plan of implementation, giving smaller changes in process management priority while accounting for hardships during implementation. In other words, the solution footprint defines the cost and timeline of implementation.

3. Identify the Driving Forces of Benefits, and Calculate the ROI

 The final step to developing your business case for better process management is based on benefits, including better efficiency, visibility and agility. Think back to the following key benefits of process management and what drives them.

  • Efficiency – Process management reduces cycle time, execution costs and working capital constraints. Meanwhile, it enhances cash flow, productivity and throughput.
  • Visibility – Visibility is about eliminating possible violations and unethical, hidden practices in your organization. Through effective process management, you will have a recent understanding of your organization’s status, better decision making, decreased risk, increased compliance, higher levels of customer satisfaction and increased ability to handle problems more effectively.
  • Agility – Businesses are always changing, and adapting quickly is tantamount to business success. Process management provides a means of streamlining concept-to-market products and reaction to markets. It boosts existing revenue streams and identifies new streams, while reducing costs in launching, maintaining and adjusting your services or offerings.

You will also need to calculate the potential indirect and direct ROI of implementing BPM in your organization.

Direct ROI can be derived by thinking of the immediate, tactile costs of implementing process management in your organization. Meanwhile, indirect ROI revolves around decreased costs that are secondary to immediate benefits of implementation. As explained by this blog post, you will need to formulate how each cost will result in future savings. But, you should calculate the ROI at a five-year projection. This will provide the greatest insight into how BPM will affect your bottom line.

Start Your Journey Toward Better Project and Process Management Today

You cannot overstate the benefits possible when your organization enables efficiency, visibility and agility through process management. If you are building a case for implementing BPM in your organization, remember to assess your current processes first, identify how it leads to improvements and define your ROI.

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