Understanding BPMS Technology

One interesting aspect of nurturing a process culture is that process participants are able to see how their work affects the value chain and value delivery to clients. They can see how an end-to-end business process delivers value to clients and are able to appreciate how all the units of the company fit together as well as how business processes are interconnected. The more the level of transparency offered by BPMS technology, the more employees will be motivated to understand the nuances of handoffs, trade suggestions and exchange ideas on how to improve processes.

In implementing Business Process Management, existing processes should guide the use of tools and not the other way round. Complex software functionalities should not dictate the design of the process since this can result in a situation where processes become less efficient.

This article highlights the main components of a Business Process Management System but not all the components discussed here are necessary to achieve BPM. Each component would need to be assessed for its suitability and relevance to the organization.

The Business Process Repository – This repository can store a dynamic collection of processes and allow changes to them without the need to manage each change manually/individually.

In some cases, a 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.

BPMS can be integrated with other software like legacy and identity management systems through Enterprise Application Integration. Where multiple applications are involved in a process, the interaction between the workflow and applications can be facilitated through BPMS.

The process repository can store process models, rules and metadata about processes to facilitate re-use of process components.

The Rules Engine is integrated into BPMS to manage effective automation. It is driven by business rules and provides a platform to facilitate the separation of business rules from processes.

Design & Simulation Services – These tools are used by business analysts for flowcharting and modelling. Advanced features also allow for simulation so that processes may be tested before they are put to live.

Monitoring Services use the data generated while a business process is being executed for analysis and reporting. Processes can be monitored to understand who is executing what, which step in the process is being executed and what time the execution started. This activity monitoring can help to identify bottlenecks so that they can be corrected.

Workflow Engine - This enforces rules that govern the transition from one task to another. It is responsible for delivering tasks to the participants who are responsible for executing them.

Content Repository - This manages unstructured data (files) and information used or created by the business process.

Which of these BPMS technology components does your organization use?