Stages Of Business Process Management | 5 mins read

The 6 Stages of Business Process Management

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Lauren Christiansen

By Lauren Christiansen

An In-Depth Look at the Stages of Business Process Management

Companies have goals to meet and objectives to achieve. Perhaps it's improving the delivery process or streamlining contract management. Regardless of the objective, achieving them depends on a series of tasks and involved stakeholders. These tasks are also referred to as business processes.

Every functional company consists of different business processes. With new automated tools and less need for manual work, owners are focused on process optimization and workflow automation. The question becomes, who and how are these tasks managed so the supply chain functions properly?

That's where business process management comes into play. BPM identifies, executes, and monitors both automated and manual processes within an organization. Its overarching goal is to optimize these tasks to achieve maximum efficiency and improve a company's performance. For a BPM discipline to be effective, it must consist of core elements. Read ahead for information on these elements, process mangaement software, and the details of the BPM life cycle.

6 Elements of Business Process Management

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Experts suggest that every BPM business strategy should include 6 elements -

  • Strategic Alignment - All BPM tools and goals should align with organizational objectives. Otherwise, businesses will waste time and resources investing in expensive BPM solutions that serve no purpose.
  • Governance - All stakeholders involved in business processes must be aware of their assigned roles. This also requires establishing clear guidelines on any decision-making processes concerning BPM.
  • Methodologies - A BPM discipline involves different BPM software and technologies that facilitate the monitoring and management of business processes. This also involves techniques such as Six Sigma, which is used to optimize business processes.
  • Information Technology - The BPM process is very dependent on management tools and other applications.
  • Stakeholders - An effective BPM discipline requires various stakeholders to operate technologies and monitor business processes. These individuals must ensure strategic alignment throughout the entire BPM life cycle.
  • Culture - The company culture must support and prioritize any BPM initiative for it to be effective.

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The Business Process Management Life Cycle

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What exactly is the BPM life cycle? The BPM life cycle is the various steps within any BPM discipline. It is how an organization implements a business process management system. Without all five elements of a BPM system, the results will not be productive or optimal. Read ahead for a summary of the top 5.

1. BPM Life Cycle Process Planning

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A BPM discipline starts with a plan that maps out how an organization will implement any BPM solution. Any business strategy must be driven entirely by processes, to deliver value to clients. This step involves a thorough understanding of a company's goals and business strategies.

The latter will help ensure the alignment between any BPM initiative and an organization's objectives. Furthermore, this step of the life cycle requires identifying and numbering all current business processes. These may be primary processes, secondary processes, or management processes.

  • Think about execution before starting to plan
  • Determine whether there will be a bottom-up or top-down planning process
  • Commit to a schedule
  • Ensure all necessary stakeholders are included
  • Celebrate key successes
  • Don't overplan, but be prepared

2. BPM Life Cycle Analysis of Business Processes

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Owners must thoroughly understand all existing business processes so they can be managed. The purpose of this phase is to identify whether these tasks align with the objectives of an organization. Typically, individuals gather data on management software during this phase of the cycle. The data relates to the status and performance of each business activity.

Furthermore, BPM specialists need to assess the current KPIs and whether they effectively monitor the status of processes. Data collection processes are either qualitative or quantitative. Qualitative research uses non-statistical means to extract insights, while quantitative research is all the numerical measurements within data.

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3. BPM Life Cycle - Design and Modeling of Business Processes

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After analyzing each business process, owners may have to rebuild processes or at least redesign them. The purpose of this phase is to discern whether each process is effective, regardless of whether it is manual or automated. Other requirements in this workflow management stage include documenting work performed in process modeling, identifying roles of stakeholders, and labeling the sequence of events within each process. When it comes to redesigning processes, owners can either focus on continuous process improvement or rework the process in its entirety.

  • Define the problem with the process
  • Collect any necessary information or data
  • Brainstorm and analyze ideas
  • Develop solutions
  • Gather feedback
  • Make improvements

4. BPM Life Cycle - Process Implementation

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After each process is designed, it needs to be implemented. This will either be done systematically or non-systemically. Systemic implementation requires the usage of applications and technologies. Non-systemic implementation occurs when a set of BPM tools are not utilized. Owners can determine which implementation method to use by reviewing the nature of each process itself. Not all business processes need to be automated.

5. BPM Life Cycle Monitoring and Controlling

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Once a business process is implemented, it needs to be monitored on BPM software to assess its performance. This requires obtaining necessary data to determine whether there should be changes to said process. Owners should also pick a set of relevant KPIs to accurately monitor the performance of revamped workflows. Dashboards, push notifications, and process management software are the best tools to analyze KPIs and determine whether there are inefficiencies.

  • Get clarity on the end goal of a process
  • Determine success metrics
  • Document the process
  • Establish effective reporting methods
  • Work with other stakeholders to ensure a successful outcome

6. BPM Life Cycle Process Refinement

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Throughout the BPM life cycle, owners are continuously improving and monitoring workflows to maximize efficiency. But they can't stop at step 5. They need to constantly refine existing processes to align with evolving consumer needs or market trends.

Increasing customer satisfaction and improving the customer experience should always be the priority. Just because something works now doesn't mean that it will work forever. Effective owners who are focused on innovation will constantly reevaluate the existing business process and make adjustments as needed.

Key Takeaways of Business Process Management

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In conclusion, here is what to know about business process management -

  • The six elements of business process management include strategic alignment, governance, methodologies, information technology, people, and culture.
  • Steps in the business process management life cycle include process planning, the analysis of business processes, design and modeling of business processes, process implementation, process monitoring, and process refinement.

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