Business Applications are simply a suite of software packages that enable certain business functions to be executed. Thus, Business Process Management (BPM) can have its own Business Applications. Indeed, BPM has its own Applications. BPM Applications are often referred to as Business Process Management Software (BPMS). Sometimes, though rarely, can be termed as Business Process Management Applications (BPMA). The difference between BPMS and BPMA is more of semantics.
In BPMS, we can say that ‘S’ is quite radical. It is radical in the sense that it stands as an acronym for several terms. Apart from ‘Software’, it also stands for ‘System’, ‘Suite’, or ‘Solution’. Thus, you will find these terms being used interchangeably depending on what the user intends to emphasize. Though the terms are related, they are not synonymous. Hence, it is important to curiously digest the context within which the choice of the term is being used.
So, what is the difference between BPMS and BPM?
First of all, Business Process Management (BPM) is a management function . On the other hand, BPMS (or BPM Application) is an electronic tool that is used to improve the execution of this management function .
BPM is a management discipline that employs various methods (including BPMS) to discover, explore, model, analyze, measure, improve and optimize business processes .
In this discipline, a BPMS aids and facilitates this discovery, exploration, modeling, analyzing, measuring, improving, and optimizing the business process.
While seeking the difference between BPMS and BPM we inevitably have to consider what it means by Business Process. A business process is an activity or function that coordinates the various resources, systems, and respective stakeholders’ behavior in a synergistic manner with the primary objective of yielding outcomes that supports or acts in furtherance of the business strategy .
Are BPMS and BPM separable?
Well, BPMS is an enabling tool for BPM. Thus, while BPM can do without BPMS, BPMS cannot do without BPM. BPM is the reason for the existence of BPMS.
Why BPMS is important
Is a business process important? Well, if a business process is important, then, managing it becomes extremely important. BPMS is simply a management tool that helps to boost efficiency, and effectiveness of the BPM.
As we have seen, by the very definition of what a business process is, then, BPMS is an inevitable part of any effective and efficient modern business management. We have to emphasize the term ‘ Modern ’ because a traditional BPM doesn’t rely on software technology. However, a modern business system heavily relies on technology to gain a competitive edge in its core domain.
Having said this, let’s look at those key components of an effective BPMS…
Key components that give rise to an effective BPMS
We can break down the key components that give rise to a BPMS into two broad categories – macro components (methodologies), and micro components (elements)
BPMS macro components:
- Modeling – This refers to mapping out a business function in terms of its processes and then allocating resources, setting standards of performance, and measuring the performance of each process.
- Automating – This refers to the systemic and systematic transitioning of the business process from manual operation to automated operation.
- Optimization – This refers to ensuring that the business process achieves the highest possible level of efficiency and effectiveness.
- Managing – this refers to planning, directing, controlling, communicating, and making decisions with regard to the business process with the aim of ensuring that modeling, automating, and optimization are geared towards achieving the strategic business objectives.
BPMS micro components
Just as we have seen before, the ‘S’ in the BPMS is quite radical. While BPMS methodologies remain relatively stable (with just a few alterations) regardless of how the ‘S’ is utilized, the BPMS micro components vary greatly depending on how the ‘S’ is used.
For example, micro components where ‘S’ refers to ‘Software’ will vary greatly from those where ‘S’ refers to ‘Suite’. This variation will become much more pronounced when ‘S’ refers to ‘Solution’.
Nonetheless, we can take the midway approach and consider the common elements, regardless of the variations in the ‘S’ usage.
The following are the micro components:
- Process Modeling Tools – these tools are used to create various process models that can be fed into the process simulation.
- Process Simulation – this takes a model generated by the Process Modeling Tools to a test. This simulation mimics the real business process scenario but on a test basis. This is important in ensuring that there are no errors, bottlenecks, and discrepancies in the business process which might negatively affect the automation once fully implemented.
- Integrated Business Rules Engine – this is a facility that is used to generate rules based on input parameters. It employs Workflow techniques to guide the business process.
- Forms Designer – this is a tool that makes it easy to design electronic forms as a replacement of the paper-based forms during the transition to the automation process. It can still remain a permanent component of the business process as new forms will still need to be created or the existing ones modified as the automation matures.
- Process Optimization Methodologies – these are different sets of approaches that guide the optimization of the business process.
- Business Activity Monitoring and Reporting Tools – these are sets of tools that enable the effectiveness of the control function by monitoring whether the business process is flowing according to set rules and standards and report on any deviation so that appropriate remedial mechanisms can be set.
- Business Intelligence Tools – These are tools used to gather business intelligence with regard to the business process. Business intelligence is based on gathering crucial information about business process performance and presenting such information in such a manner that enables intelligent business decisions to be made.
How Coreshop Solutions leverages the power of BPMS to advance enterprise Business Process Management
Coreshop Solutions is a BPM consultant with expertise in the utilization of BPMS in coming up with customized BPM that meets the unique needs of individual enterprises.
As part of its consultancy services, Coreshop Solutions not only comes with new BPM but can also carry out incisive analysis of the already existing BPM to ensure that it achieves the enterprise’s strategic objectives and ultimate goal. Coreshop Solutions achieves this by providing a turnkey solution that’s intuitive to use, fast, portable, scalable, configurable and ultimately tailor-made to the client’s most immediate needs.
While implementing a BPM solution, Coreshop Solutions ensures that various business applications within the enterprise operate seamlessly and synergistically to achieve a holistic business process that is in line with the enterprise goals and objectives.
In case you are planning to implement BPM or you do have an existing one that you feel is not meeting your expectations, Coreshop Solutions is ready to partner with you as your BPM consultant in ensuring that you not only get value for your money but also achieve your enterprise’s strategic goals and objectives.