So you’ve learnt from my previous blog article that ‘Functionality’ is just one of the 9 factors that dictate the cost of your BPM investment. Now, let’s imagine for a moment that your functional checklist is ticked for all your business’ short and long term BPM needs (yes, that is possible!) and that you’ve spent weeks or months perfecting your final process application, only to learn that new legislation is just around the corner. Brilliant, there’s Murphy again (anything that can go wrong, will go wrong) trying to sabotage the delivery of your first quick win.
Let me bring a statement from the previous article: Business goals, processes, requirements, priorities, let’s face it, they all change with time, at any organization, big or small. If you did your homework properly and built a solid BPM business case, you shouldn’t worry. ‘Ease of use’ should have been one of the critical elements that you deeply evaluated.
By now you may be wondering, what does ‘Ease of use’ have to do with new legislation? The ease of use corresponds to the intuitiveness and efficiency of the BPM Suite to manage change; your BPM solution must allow your business to automate processes fast on the first implementation, but it should also allow you to easily and flexibly adapt your processes to new business conditions at advanced stages of that first implementation, or even when the implementation has been completed.
‘Ease of use’ can’t be easily quantified and yet it will have a huge impact on development speed and overall team productivity – especially if you need programming or technical skills to make simple changes. My recommendation: look for a BPM Suite that has placed usability at the heart of its product strategy – and has conceived it as being equally important for both Business and IT users in its ability to encourage and boost collaboration between them.
For example, can business users easily take a hands-on leadership role in requirements capture and process modelling? Can business users initiate process changes without heavy IT involvement? How easy is it to make changes on the fly? How will you ensure process model changes are seamlessly propagated through the whole system (and across your omni-channel applications)? How quickly will the change become operational? Unless business and IT can clearly articulate what is required and easily collaborate at every stage, then the end result will be misaligned with the business strategy – costing valuable time and money.
Along with collaboration, BPM systems should enable rapid, ongoing, hassle-free change – eliminating the scenario that sees employees using manual work-arounds for weeks and months that so often leads to costly mistakes and undermines financial performance. Providing the ‘ease of use’ to adapt quickly and continuously should be at the heart of what your technology partner offers.
At the end of the day, many businesses need to comply with regulatory or organizational mandates – or potentially face heavy penalties. Whether is a new legislation, a new sub-process, a new activity, a new role, you name it, any process change needs to be tackled with the same rigorous and rapid approach in order to ensure compliance and avoid costs. You know this already of course, but there is no big or small change in the minds of your auditors, a change is a change that needs to be done, and done immediately!
My final blog post next week will explore a couple of the remaining cost factors covered in our whitepaper, but to learn more today about all 9 factors that can help minimize your BPM investment, DOWNLOAD OUR WHITEPAPER.