Successes in Process Automation

The Adelaide BPMLink presentation this evening provided an interesting insight into achieving process improvement through the implementation of a technology platform and the adoption of dynamic processes. I have previously written that I do not favour either of these approaches; however I am having a re-think!

Jane and Marc from Bradham Consulting discussed a process that they successfully implemented using the Handysoft BPM suite and more specifically utilising the BizFlow Office Engine. The business process dealt with very sensitive material that needed to be handled differently depending on the nature of the content; dynamically determined tasks allowed for each instance of the process to be automated while still being controlled and audit-able.

One of the lessons learnt from this exercise was the need to also educate the participants in IT to ensure they have the required level of maturity. I have often through that a big part of the facilitation activities for improving processes is to educate the participants on process management thinking; IT is now an additional important step.

Marc gave us another tip – to help the participants understand the process; get them to draw it.

The team mentioned that there was a large amount of effort put into developing the forms, including incorporating the “reality” processes that were not part of the original analysis. This mirrors my own experience, where I have seen traditional BPMS solutions full short because they do not handle the interface between the user and the automated process – and that is where the majority of the business rules and logic can reside.

My final thought was that the project demonstrated a good use of technology to solve the business problem; which was not necessarily improving the business process. BY doing this well, the organisation is now better equipped to embrace real process management. I’m shifting my approach, how does this compare to yours?