Hassle-free process management is a result of rigorous mapping and optimization of workflows. But to make business process management work, you need to implement it flawlessly. Rushing the implementation process to go live quickly can result in substandard performance or general chaos.
Don’t let haste or inadequate research impair the benefits of business process management. Follow the tried and tested 10-step checklist for BPM implementation.
1. Identify stakeholder needs
Before you choose the BPM software or platform, you need to involve every stakeholder for their unique inputs. But instead of involving them in the testing stage, involve them while brainstorming the choice of software. This ensures high adoption rates and alignment with user needs. A business process management system has two important stakeholders. Technical experts who know how to run the software and function owners who know how to run the processes. Involve them at this point to understand their pain points and business requirements.
2. Choose the software
Your process framework will be as effective as the platform you choose. The BPM market is overcrowded with indistinguishable automation and process mapping solutions. Some are specifically designed for visual workflow building while some are built for better document and data management. You need a solution that everyone in your organization can make the most use of, ideally the one that combines all the must-have features in a BPM solution. Calling technical consultants every time there is an issue or process change can be expensive and time-consuming. Make sure you get a visually buildable, low-code, and easy-to-use solution so that the in-house business users can manage their processes without external help.
3. Test run the Software
Test run the chosen software to understand its functionalities. Start automating simple processes like document approval that you can easily control should it fail. Don’t apply the solution to all your processes or automate complex procedures in the testing stage. Your teams should become comfortable using the BPM tool before you start implementing it across critical processes. Once your teams are in control, you can expand or scale the solution across all organizational processes. Monitor the test run closely and fine-tune the solution for your business needs.
4. Assign process owners
When introducing a BPM solution to your organization, you should identify process owners to assign implementation and management responsibilities. Business process management is a multi-owner environment where every user is critical for successful process completion. When you don’t point users in the right directions, there will be constant stepping on toes and finger-pointing. Some processes even go unattended, leading to the wastage of resources. Make process owners in charge of the overall business processes and task owners in charge of individual tasks. When everyone knows their roles, they can enable the smooth functioning of business process management.
5. Set objectives and key results
What do you expect out of business process management? If you don’t have clear organizational objectives associated with your BPM implementation, you are only wasting time in a directionless venture. Even if you manage to achieve day-to-day process efficiency, you are not progressing towards your ultimate business objectives like cost-saving or process stability. Outline these objectives and break them down into smaller benchmarks for each task to aim towards. Some workflows are designed for less intervention while some focus on cutting down process time and costs. Different processes have different outcomes but a common objective.
6. Prototype the workflows
Outline how your ideal workflow should look like. Outline the set of activities in a workflow, the business rules to follow, process owners to involve, and the ideal outcome to achieve. Draw up a visual representation of the workflows before you model them in the workflow engine. This kind of process modeling helps you streamline and course-correct the business processes. It is at this step you lay out the processes that need to be automated. Keep the processes as digitized as possible to avoid the struggles of manual process management. As a thumb rule, the workflow should take the shortest route to fully realize the benefits of automated process management. You should also lay out the exception rules for easy change management should a deviation occur.
7. Pilot the workflows
Pilot the created workflows to understand the impact of BPM without halting or disturbing the ongoing workflows. Check the de facto processing time, data load tolerance, and output quality and if they surpass the manually obtained outputs. Clear any errors or inefficiencies at this stage to avoid them from creeping into the business-critical processes. Expand the workflows across the BPM life cycle once your team is in better control of the tool and its impact.
8. Adopt existing solutions
Some conventional BPM solutions require a complete overhaul of your existing process infrastructure and platforms. These are solutions you want to stay away from. With the advent of digital transformation and SaaS-friendly automation tools, business process methodologies today are designed to coexist with your preexisting infrastructure. Flexibility and compatibility with CRM and API is a crucial feature to consider when choosing a BPM system. A flexible BPM system helps you translate your original processes into high-efficiency workflows and expands the capabilities of your existing platforms instead of replacing them.
9. Train process owners
Business process management supports and maximizes the efforts of process owners. They are not removed from the equation. They are still actively involved in every stage of the process life cycle, but unlike before, they are involved only when necessary. Training them about where they fit into the process and how to utilize the tool to the fullest simplifies the onboarding process and accelerates user adoption.
10. Measure and improvise
Till now, you don’t know if automation is benefiting your end business processes. You also don’t know if the new workflow is perfectly optimized or if there is still room for improvement. Process optimization is a result of continuous monitoring and measuring of your processes. They get better with time. What you can do, is speed up the optimization with data-driven insights and relevant KPI metrics. Business process management software comes with extensive reporting and analytical capabilities to derive these real-time insights for business process improvement.
BPM is a comprehensive solution to simplify unwieldy processes. Read the complete guide to business process management.
BPM is as effective as its implementation
BPM implementations can be complex, daunting, and extremely time-consuming. The impact of perfectly implemented business process management is too high to be left to chances. Achieve operational excellence with HappyFox’s BPM suite of solutions. HappyFox Workflows is a no-code, cloud-based process automation solution to transform your operational efficiency. Get a HappyFox Workflows demo today.