Business Process Management – What Is It?

Business
// 30 December 2015

The term Business Process Management (BPM) is a systematic approach to making a company’s workflow more efficient, more effective and more capable of adapting to the ever changing business environment. It also refers to how professionals study, change and monitor business processes for purposes of ensuring they run well and can be upgraded over time.

BPM is a field of both infrastructure management and operations management both of which are concerned with optimizing and maintaining an organization’s core operations and equipment. It is best thought as a business practice that encompasses structured methods and techniques. BPM is not a technology, but there are technologies in the market that carry this descriptor by virtue of what they enable, such as identify and changing the already existing processes so that they align with desired, presumably improved, future state of affairs.

The purpose of Business Process Management is to minimize miscommunication and human error, focusing stakeholders on the requirements of their duties. Business Process Management is often the meeting point within an organization between the IT department and the Line-of-Business (LOB). Business Management Notation (BPMN) and Business Process Execution Language (BPEL) were both developed to help in the facilitation of communication between the LOB and IT. Both languages are quite easy to learn which means most business professionals can quickly and easily learn to use them in designing processes. Both BPMN and BPEL strictly adhere to the basic fundamentals of programming, so that these processes created in either language are made easy for developers to translate them into hard code.

There are three basic types of BPM frameworks in the market today. Horizontal frameworks focus on the design and development areas of business practices and are generally focused on technology and reuse. Vertical Business Process Management frameworks focus on a particular set of coordinated tasks. They also have pre-built templates which can be easily accessed, configured and deployed.

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