Why Process Repositories Are Better Than Drawing Tools

One of the key components of BPM Technology is a process repository with the capability to store information on organization-wide processes. A process repository provides a central reference location where employees across the business can access process information to understand how things should work. Business process repositories need to be managed by defining procedures for ensuring that all changes are properly controlled and validated.

In some cases, a Business Process Management System (BPMS) may come with process modelling features for representing processes but the downside to this is that its features and modelling notations may be limited to the capabilities of the software.

Repository tools are not the same as presentation/drawing applications like Powerpoint and Visio and are usually more effective for the following reasons:

  1. Process repositories are updatable and searchable – Process drawings in drawing applications like Visio are difficult to maintain. Such tools do not support the creation of large process models.
  2. Process repositories have the capability to store dynamic information on processes in addition to the drawings. You are able to record information on data objects, functions & system information, display these graphically and search for specific information. For example, if you want to find a list of processes that a specific role (e.g. Client Manager) in the organization is involved in, you can search for this easily and get the results displayed in different formats.

  3. With process repositories, it is easier to make changes in multiple places. For example, if the Client Mangaer Role is changed to Client Relationship Manager, the change can easily be reflected in all process diagrams where “Client Manager” appears without the need to update all the instances where the role appears manually. This saves time and improves efficiency.

  4. Process repositories can be used to enforce process drawing standards, which is hard to do with a drawing tool. Process model components may also be re-used as often as necessary.
  5. Process repositories allow analysts to run reports, view database dependencies and the master data associated with processes.

Process repositories also have features for versioning, authentication, categorization and searching, with the capability to store forms used for executing tasks, business rules and other process-related information.

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