About 2/3rd of all the corporate and firms big & small, all round the world, have some sort of an ERP backend to help address their business transactions that occur. Operational efficiency, greater visibility through reports & a quicker TAT are some of the high points of an IT tool meant to manage businesses at an enterprise level. Although there’s more than what meets the eye – there are reaping financial accounting benefits attached to logistic services, tighter auditing and control on users, scalable solutions like modular so to speak of, and granularity in business visibility.
Over the last few years, the trend in this sector has seen leaps and bounds galloping towards mobility services according to Gartner and Forrester analytic reports. About a third of all transactions have taken centre stage & a paradigm shift from the bounds of desktop to all sorts of mobility devices. The surge in demand has been unparalleled over the last few years since 2010, when the IT community had to take proactive initiatives to improve the logistics and the infrastructure to improve the mechanisms that set the wheels running for mobility services. And then the unanimous roar made the consensus clear for precise on-demand solutions that shall cater to the burgeoning ERP and with it paraphernalia of enterprise wide systems.
Today we not only have ERP, but with it, we got more tech juices with stardust from starship troopers that can scare the docile kitty out of her living daylight! Talk about EMM, EAI, ECM, – namely aka Enterprise Mobility Management, Enterprise Architecture Integration, Enterprise Content Management, – all serve the hog wash or rather pillar for some of the fortune 500s.
Which, then, ladies and gentlemen, leads us to think a moment on where our very old BPM fits in this whole IT mess portfolio of offerings? Until a decade back – the C level execs sat down to discuss the road ahead for their enterprise strategic decision. They had zeroed in on solution which we now know as BPM to be their strategic ally for decision making and the ubiquitous rants of Continuous Business Improvement rung bells in their ears. Holly Molly! – Little did they realize, BPM was much more than a strategic tool and how!
Enter BPM. How does an organization get moving up ahead with a nifty tool like an ERP? Well, you might think of it to do certain wonder such as execute stock replenishment as soon as the inventory hits the minimum stock count – or automatically block customer sales orders, if their credit limit crosses a certain predefined amount. Yes it does help the company improve on lines of organizational merits for the key stakeholders concerned, but the machinery still fumes like a rackety old St. Morris needing engine coolant. It can do this and more, but with some extra cheese. This extra cheese is Business Process Management which acts as a logical layer on the whole IT landscape of things, which introduces a scheme of business automation for both ad-hoc and ERP led implemented processes.
So, coming to the meaty bit – organizations get operational effectiveness with ERPs. And BPMs help manoeuvre and deploy tactics, business rules, automate tasks among users who are ordained on tasks which have been departmentalized in either a centralized or a decentralized ERP in their office. BPMs take centre stage in automating business tasks which are otherwise are manual processes. Critical business led processes have been defined in ERP with certain limitations of business rules to an extent. There’s a need to have them automated depending on various business needs and criticality.
Automation to a degree of ERP centric is achievable. If it’s so required, to have automation based on unstructured data sets, coming from manual and external sources – BPM is able to accomplish this. In essentiality, BPM adheres to orchestration of more than one systems, helps automates manual tasks, is able to create business event rules, and most importantly creates workflow for the stakeholders – which is a process centric approach for the users concerned.
Above illustration shall highlight, even similar process labelled in yellows which are mainly processes implemented in an ERP. The BPM differentiator as just discussed, sits on top of the enterprise layer, and introduces workflow which is mainly decision based, user based, document led conversion into digitized formats, certain patterned trend arising which can be monitored in events through BAM – business activity monitoring.
So, in essence, how does an organization achieve agility? BPM helps organization achieve enterprise agility.
And how does BPM achieve agility? Implementing SOA using WSDL gives BPM agility and as the way goes forward the future lies in immense scope of SOA styled BPM deliverables.