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Our guide to Business Process Management

Business Process Management: the approach for modelling, automating, executing and optimising all the business processes within your organisation and striving for operational excellence.Unleash the potential of your processes!

What is Business Process Management?

In practical terms, what is Business Process Management?

While Business Process Management is first and foremost an approach, it requires technological resources that enable business processes to be finely modelled and then implemented organisationally. Business Process Management is therefore an approach, a technological solution and a set of tools. Its purpose is to improve the design, implementation and orchestration of business processes. It will ensure the computerisation of end-to-end processes without stopping at the limits of applications.

To map, represent, orchestrate and computerise processes, BPM provides modelling, GUI design, automation and supervision tools. To support the operational implementation of processes, BPM’s user screens, forms and portals facilitate interaction between the players involved at every stage, enabling them to concentrate on their business activity.

From a strategic point of view, the BPM approach is an opportunity for organisations to improve or even completely rethink their processes. The automation of tasks, workflows and the integration of technical activities to complement human actions then accelerate their completion and strengthen internal communication. BPM serves to improve performance on two levels: human and organisational. Its technological foundation must enable it to adapt continuously to changes in business processes and activities.

How does Business Process Management work?

Business Process Management is first and foremost a graphical modelling and GUI generation tool that enables processes to be truly described and articulated.

BPMN 2.0 (Business Process Model and Notation 2.0) is an internationally recognised modelling standard that meets this need for a common language. It is the reference framework for this graphical representation. It is a common notation enabling both IT and non-IT professions to adopt the method.

Depending on the BPM tool, they can include flexible drag & drop functionality and automatic generation of forms and documentation to help standardise usage and improve the user experience. Other features include collaboration portals for users to track their tasks, and management of roles and authorisations.

Thanks to the modelling developed in the first instance, the processes are articulated in the most fluid way possible for the organisation. The design and optimisation of each process is thus an opportunity to align the departments affected around a shared, cross-functional vision that serves the company’s performance.

The Enterprise Process Management approach is also a powerful control tool. Timeline, monitoring of processes and their status, alerts, escalation triggers: the central supervision console provides all the tools you need to better manage the implementation and running of processes.

Comment schématiser le concept de Business Process Management ?

A BPM project is first and foremost a business project that serves the company's strategy. So before launching this type of project, it's essential to ask yourself: how will optimising processes improve the offering, operational excellence or customer satisfaction? And which processes will deliver the most value?

In many companies, each job will describe the procedures from its own point of view, without necessarily knowing what happens before or after its action. It is therefore absolutely essential to get the business units, the IT department and general management to talk to each other and to analyse the processes and exchange cycles in their entirety and across the board.

This language has the advantage of encouraging collaboration and visually coordinating the logical sequences of actions and messages that exist between the various business lines: input/output, automatic tasks, manual tasks, templates to be applied for the latter, processing sub-processes called up in the master process, routing and constraints of the various tasks, role of each actor and user group.

Based on mathematical rules, it can also be easily translated into different execution languages BPEL Business Process Execution Language; ideal for rapidly designing webservices.

This language has the advantage of encouraging collaboration and visually coordinating the logical sequences of actions and messages that exist between the various business lines: input/output, automatic tasks, manual tasks, templates to be applied for the latter, processing sub-processes called up in the master process, routing and constraints of the various tasks, role of each actor and user group.

Based on mathematical rules, it can also be easily translated into different BPEL Business Process Execution Languages, making it ideal for rapidly designing webservices.

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What are the use cases for business process management solutions?

The use cases for Data Platforms or EDPs are mainly related to data governance within the company or in certain business areas. They support the organisation’s data strategy by providing tools and guaranteeing data centralisation, consistency and quality. In doing so, they can also be used to meet specific business challenges and needs!

Business Process Management in the Public Sector

  • Procedures linked to career paths in the education sector (enrolment, online application, recruitment, etc.)
  • Digitalisation of processes linked to administrative changes (address, civil status, IBAN, etc.)
  • HR portal: requests for teleworking, luncheon vouchers, sick leave, travel authorisations, etc.
  • Public purchase requests, from expression of need to generation and signature of purchase order, then dispatch to supplier
  • Market flows between the Purchasing IS and the Accounts IS
  • Budget construction and planning (BP/BS/DM, PPF/PPI)

Discover Blueway Public Sector

Business Process Management at the heart of companies

  • Order tracking process
  • RGPD consent management procedure
  • Complaints management and traceability
  • Request for investment or internal purchase
  • HR processes (interviews, onboarding, holidays, etc.)
  • Quality control on goods receipt or production line
  • Stock release request
  • Supplier portal
Make an appointment now for an exchange or a demo!

Understanding the role and benefits of Business Process Management

This approach to the governance and management of business processes focuses on the digitisation of procedures and action sequences through modelling, the creation of portals and GUIs, automation and supervision. In this way, the BPM approach enables business needs to be adapted as closely as possible to reality, and makes up for the shortcomings of existing information systems and application constraints. However, Business Process Management and BPMS solutions vary widely in terms of functional scope, philosophy and technological base. What criteria should you use to choose the solution best suited to your needs?

BPM criteria, key functions and points of attention

  • Ergonomics of the design tool: simplicity is at the heart of BPM adoption! Simple modelling of sequences, screens and forms are key functions
  • Compliance with the BPMn 2.0 standard: a common, clear framework for all stakeholders
  • Adherence to the Information System: essential for transporting data and integrating processes within the IS
  • End-to-end process modelling without application constraints
  • Automation and rules management: highly customisable alerts, conditions, exceptions and variants for each business stage
  • Supervision: dashboard and incident history, archiving of completed processes
  • Scalability and maintainability: to easily adapt processes as the organisation changes

The benefits of BPM approaches

  • Standardise processes, enabling them to be supervised and optimised
  • Automate some tasks to save time and enhance the value of human resources
  • Improve visibility of actions and their sequence, and make processing more reliable
  • Put the information the business needs in the hands of the people who do it
  • Develop mobility and encourage the sharing of information between different departments
  • Provide genuine governance of the company’s processes and activities
  • Facilitate the adoption of processes by the business thanks to the construction of simple screens and forms
  • Standardise usage throughout the organisation
  • Enable reactive management and a posteriori analysis
  • Improve efficiency by laying the foundations for an operational excellence approach

Blueway’s Phoenix platform and our convictions around the Business Process Management approach

As a key solution for the circulation of data within the enterprise, BPM is for us an essential approach to governance and operational excellence.

Our Process Governance solution (AGORA for the Public Sector) is the BPM module of our Phoenix data platform. It is a BPMn2-standard process design studio imbued with the Blueway philosophy of ease of use, low code and rapid deployment. It integrates naturally with the ESB data transport platform, giving you total control over your data flows!

Data Platform Phoenix : DQM, MDM, BPM, ESB, Data Catalog

Blueway’s Phoenix integrates process management at the heart of its platform

A user-friendly interface

You can model processes with the mouse, using a WYSIWYG interface that's user-friendly. The no-code tool makes it easy for less technical professions to use. Advanced functions provide a high level of customisation.

The BPMN 2 standard

By making the most of the BPMn2 standard, you can simplify modelling: creation, but also import of existing processes, pool & lane representations, detailed management of authorisations, etc.

Hybrid treatment of processes

Process Governance combines human and technical activities within the same processes. You automate low added-value actions, while keeping the human element where it adds value. You can integrate screens, GUIs and services to meet your exact requirements.

Portals and their control

The generation of GUIs and portals simplifies the end-to-end user experience. On the administrator side, sequencing, delegations and escalations are finely controlled.

Overview and monitoring

You can monitor all your processes, whether they are active or completed. Timeline, overdue processes, progress indicators and history: keep a close eye on the implementation of processes and manage your business!

Would you like to discuss the implementation of a Business Process Management solution?

Make an appointment now for an exchange or a demo!

Our latest content on Business Process Management

Our FAQs on process management

Until about ten years ago, BPM projects were mainly reserved for large companies.Today, however, the maturity of the technologies and the experience gained in the field mean that any type of company can carry out a BPM project within a reasonable timescale and rapidly reap the benefits.

Business processes are made up of a series of tasks and actions designed to achieve a given result.The sequence of these steps may follow different interaction scenarios and require variable resources, which may be either human or technical. The same process may therefore adopt different procedures, with varying degrees of efficiency.

Processes generally cross several departments within a company. A typical example is customer relationship management: the process involves marketing, sales and customer relations (after-sales service).

When a company masters its organisation, it knows its capacity to respond ever better to its customers' expectations, while limiting its costs, which directly increases their satisfaction. Optimising business processes is therefore of strategic value to companies, as it rapidly leads to higher margins. For example, studies have shown that by simply clarifying transfers, deadlines and responsibilities within a process, a company can increase its productivity by more than 12%.

Today, the vast majority of processes process information and are centred around data. Continuous improvement therefore requires us to take as much an interest in the evolution of the process in the field as in the handling of the data.

Once the processes have been described and modelled, the next step is to implement their processing. Most execution engines incorporate modules of varying degrees of sophistication that provide functions for transporting and transforming information, as well as connectors that guarantee access to source and target data, whatever the medium.

In summary, the main stages in a business process management approach are :

  • Analysis and design
  • Modelling
  • Execution
  • Supervision
  • Optimisation

To deploy a Business Process Management or Process Governance strategy, we at Blueway believe it is essential to combine several building blocks:

A hybrid workflow design workshop that complies with the BPMN2 standard
An ESB (Enterprise service bus) to identify the stages that can be improved and then automate certain sequences in conjunction with IS applications
An MDM to centrally handle all the complex issues of data quality management and traceability.

A number of functional modules can be combined to accelerate the optimisation of business processes.These include BAM (Business Activity Monitoring), for proactively monitoring and measuring functional, technical and organisational service levels, and CEP (Complex Event Processing), for managing a large number of large and variable rules.

The current economic climate is forcing companies to sustain their efforts to improve operational efficiency and continually adapt to market changes. This is leading them to adopt new management practices such as Business Process Management (BPM). Analysts from Gartner, Forrester and CXP regularly publish studies to guide the various players involved in business process management... but what can we learn from these analyses?

Firstly, that all these reports place BPM, and the digitalisation of processes, as the key factor for success, enabling companies to cope with the growing complexity of their information systems and their need for scalability. These experts are also looking at trends and anticipating the next avenues of development for Business Process Management, which is already revolutionising the way employees interact with applications and data. Gartner analysts see the next generation of BPM solutions incorporating mobility, the cloud, big data, complex events and dynamic calculations. For its part, Forrester is banking on collaborative and dynamic BPM tools that place people at the heart of the enterprise.

In France, decision-makers in organisations of all sizes have become aware of the challenges of business process management and, more generally, of optimising processes, particularly administrative processes. According to a CXP survey, BPM projects are mainly initiated by General Management and the Information Systems Department (DSI), but operational managers (who think in terms of functions and not in terms of the company's overall process) remain one of the main obstacles to Business Process Management projects.

The survey also shows that the vast majority of French companies are convinced of the benefits of process-based management in terms of greater efficiency, better management of their business and the ability to evolve rapidly. However, these companies are still unfamiliar with BPM software solutions, and the tools they use are not very appropriate. CIOs and IT project managers do not yet see the use of BPM suites as an alternative to custom development. This paradox can be explained by the saturation of the market, where a large proportion of BPM solutions (BPMS) do not allow the transition from modelling a company's processes to executing them in its information system.

Of course, there is a real need to support companies in moving towards a process-centred approach, but software publishers are also expected to make efforts to cover the needs of process modelling, integration with the information system and data flow monitoring.

For example, when modelling a sales process, if it is described that the accounting department must check the solvency of a customer on the basis of certain amounts before the order can be processed by logistics, this implies that the information flows between the accounting software and the WMS must be automated according to these business rules. This is the integration phase of a BPM project, where the robustness of the software platform used is essential.

Finally, with their Process Intelligence functionalities, BPM software goes even further by alerting business managers in real time when they need to intervene in a process. For example, when integrating an order, if the production resources available are insufficient, the manager immediately receives a notification on his or her tablet, with simulated scenarios to help him or her make the best decision.

There is still work to be done to optimise working time in France, since according to a study by the EasyPanel institute, almost half of employees waste more than 30 minutes a day on tasks that are not directly related to their job. This is time wasted that 86% believe could be reduced through better organisation and collaboration between teams.

The average 30 minutes wasted per working day represents an annual loss of 109 hours. That's 3 weeks of work per year that an employee can save by implementing a Business Process Management approach. On a company-wide scale, the return on investment from a BPM software solution can therefore be extremely rapid!

Yes, the intermediation brick (application bus) provided by Blueway can be used to connect to business applications in a variety of ways. This is one of the strengths of Blueway's 'platform' approach!

Yes also for the BPM2 standard: it's essential for us, because this standard enables us to use the same language and a common representation.

The ESB is the foundation of the Blueway platform.The application bus is essential to guarantee a high level of adherence to the IS, and therefore efficient circulation of the information used by the BPM (retrieving, updating, enriching, etc.).

You can delegate file creation to a member of your team: the Blueway solution includes complete, secure role management.

Automated alerts and notifications are fully configurable (push screens, emails, escalation management, etc.), so you don't miss a thing at the key moments in your processes.