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  1. Peter Schooff
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. Thursday, November 03 2016, 09:51 AM
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Now that we're in November, what do you think are the biggest questions facing the BPM market for the year ahead?
Amit Kothari Accepted Answer
Is BPM dead yet?
Pega realized this early, and already moved to CRM - although it's just lipstick on a pig. If you're not customer-centric and customer-focused like Salesforce - you're finished.
Users can and will dictate what they want. Decades of IT-led decision making was/is over.
What the last decades have known as "BPM" is being re-invented at present.
And it may not be called BPM at all, since no next-generation company wants to carry dead weight that never really got anywhere.
Comment
absolutely.
  1. Ian Gotts
  2. 1 month ago
Good to meet you recently btw - Ian!
  1. Amit Kothari
  2. 1 month ago
Before I comment in detail, can you please explain how in your view BPM has been known the last decade?
  1. Emiel Kelly
  2. 1 month ago
Is the sentence "Is BPM dead yet?" dead yet?
  1. Dr Alexander Samarin
  2. 1 month ago
@Alex: not as long as there's an unexploited marketing angle to it, no.
  1. Bogdan Nafornita
  2. 3 weeks ago
  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 1
John Reynolds Accepted Answer
The struggle continues to prove that BPM can truly work for large companies. Ten-plus years in, BPM should have won large IT groups over, but it hasn't.
Comment
BPM is alive and kicking in large corporates, but it is embedded in peoples heads, Visio flowcharts that noone looks at (BPM=operational approach) and corporate apps like SAP and Salesforce (BPM=technology).

BPM=technology - IT doesn;t need to be won over. BPM technology is free as part of corporate apps, the same way as they don't need to be won over on reporting, security & logon or mobile
  1. Ian Gotts
  2. 1 month ago
Visio works "well" for folks who view "rotating file devices used to store business contact information" and "personal organiser wallets" as high-tech.

All three belong in museums.
  1. karl walter keirstead
  2. 1 month ago
LOL@Visio - haven't used it in the past 10 years.
  1. Bogdan Nafornita
  2. 3 weeks ago
  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 2
Patrick Lujan Accepted Answer
Blog Writer
Extending on John's response, the same thing it's always been - the people. Always the people. BPM was never the panacea some, particularly vendors, presented it as and the onus has always been on educating organizations on what it can do and how best to do that, firmly setting expectations and levels of effort attendant to accomplishing that. In short, the old adage of "you get out of it what you put into it" applies here and oh so many just don't, won't get that.
Comment
That's it! Socialization of BPM. And management taking responsibility.
  1. John Morris
  2. 1 month ago
  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 3
1. Consolidate BPM knowledge to avoid the situation when 2 BPM experts have 3 opinions on every "tiny" aspect of BPM.

2. Evolve from the vendor-centric BPM to the customer-centric BPM to avoid vendor lock-in with BPM-suite tools.

3. Understand that even “low-code” BPM has a huge impact on any enterprise because the latter has to change many internal habits to fully use the benefits of BPM.

4. Stop the self-destruction fight BPM vs ACM, again.

5. Move to cloud ASAP because even the top-range BPM-suite tool as PaaS is cheaper than a middle-range BPM-suite tool on premises.</p>

6. Digest the hype brought by blockchain, smart-contracts, microservices, IoT, smart-everything, etc. and use the power of BPM to address those opportunities accordingly.

Thanks,

AS
Comment
The BPM vs ACM fight is a fabricated one between vendors' and consultants' hype for market share, attention.
  1. Patrick Lujan
  2. 1 month ago
7. [Dedicated to Patrick] Be able (before implementation of BPM) to explain to each group of stakeholders how their concerns will be addressed and how their current working practices will be changed for the better.
  1. Dr Alexander Samarin
  2. 1 month ago
Re: #7, exactly. Unfortunately I usually show up after that didn't occur and get to clean up, correct the mess.
  1. Patrick Lujan
  2. 1 month ago
1. Although I still see different views on what is BPM, consolidation would be ok to don't make the BPM community look like a bunch of weirdos

2. As processes are there to solve the problems of your customer, absolutely agree

3. Low code is just a way to implement some gadgets. BPM (in my definition ;-) has much more implication indeed

4. Yes. Processes can be managed in different ways to finally deliver a result, I don't care if that is called BPM ACM or workflow

5. Fine to me

6. Any new technology can have impact on the processes of your organization. If you take BPM serious, you keep track of it. Agree
  1. Emiel Kelly
  2. 1 month ago
This sounds like you are fighting for a better yesterday.
  1. Ian Gotts
  2. 1 month ago
Just be prepared to clear the mess from tomorrow.
  1. Dr Alexander Samarin
  2. 1 month ago
LOL @Ian's jibe "fighting for a better yesterday". On the other hand, how about "not throwing out the baby with the bath"? : )
  1. John Morris
  2. 1 month ago
  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 4
Emiel Kelly Accepted Answer

Biggest question?


"Why do we need BPM, we just bought digital transformation?"
Common Sensei at Procesje.nl
Comment
  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 5
Ian Gotts Accepted Answer

"Why are we even still alive?" So, then the question is, "How do we rebrand & reinvent ouselves - phoenix-like - before the final embers dim?"


Hint: The ex-BPM event organizers are calling it Operational Excellence and Business Transformation. But they are talking about the way clients think about it - not the name of the technology.  The technology already exists as part of something else they already have (or think they have). 
Comment
I think "Operational Excellence" promotes the formation of specialist groups with hammers going about looking for nails.

A better objective IMO is "Operational Effectiveness".

Panasonic had a good slogan which they no longer use, something like ".. slightly ahead of our time". I really liked that one.
  1. karl walter keirstead
  2. 1 month ago
Agree with Karl. Operational excellence always sound so army and cost cutting like.

Being operational excellent in stupid things is not so excellent
  1. Emiel Kelly
  2. 1 month ago
  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 6
Biggest questions:</p>

 </p>
<p>
<strong>Buyer perspective</strong></p>
<p>
-------------------------</p>
<p>
No languages or complex notations.</p>
<p>
User level mapping, versioning / rollout of process map templates.</p>
<p>
Seamless BPM+CEM+ECM in a run-time Case environment that accommodates workload management within and across Cases.</p>
<p>
+ Interoperability between local and remote systems and applications.</p>
<p>
+ Predictive analytics capable of providing real-time decision support to users.</p>
<p>
+ Consolidating capabilities to a free-form search enterprise knowledgebase.</p>
<p>
Cloud based, of course.</p>
<p>
 </p>
<p>
<strong>Vendor perspective</strong></p>
<p>
--------------------------</p>
<p>
Extent to which each is capable of addressing the above needs.</p>
Comment
  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 7
Derek Miers Accepted Answer

Or to summarise many of the old friends above - What is it again?


Ultimately, because it was pegged as a technology you could buy and install, it was relegated to the technologist in the room ... as in, we have someone to look after that for us.


To Ian's point - event organisers are plugging away at OPEX, Transformation (Digital or otherwise) ... and to Emiel's point someone who thought they bought Digital Transformation, will allso similarly fail.


Yet there are still lots of people getting on with the good old hard work of change and engagement. Tools and technologies are useful, but technology never was the hard part, it was always that "All Problems Are People Problems" ... i.e. the soft stuff is the hard stuff.


It comes down to engagement and cocreation if you want long term sustainable success (as against the appearance of transformation through some reductionist application of tech to reduce costs).


 


 
Comment
I don't agree that "technology was never the hard part". Nice process diagrams get buried in SOA deployment complexity and business leaves the room. And then can't come back because change is now too expensive . . . but, on the other hand, the people problems truly are the most important and challenging. So, technology and people together are, as EAs like to say, a "wicked problem".
  1. John Morris
  2. 1 month ago
Yes, it's all about change and engagement, except the people wanting this/willing to do this, have to have tools that they (mostly) can use themselves
  1. karl walter keirstead
  2. 1 month ago
  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 8
John Morris Accepted Answer

Biggest question facing BPM market in coming year? Lack of commitment to the "idea of BPM technology" and its potential.


It's hard to sell BPM or champion BPM for adoption if BPM as a concept is fading from market and technology discourse. The surest route to relative oblivion for a
[u]distinct, important and truly marketable technology[/u]
(a technology which supports both careers for practitioners and leverage points for digitalization) is for that technology to become just another feature in a solution (e.g. ERP or more focused apps).
Comment
  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 9
David Chassels Accepted Answer

Let’s just look at the whole “big” picture as “we” try to express views on just where and how BPM works. The following was included in a summary submitted to a UK Government inquiry into “accountability”.
[list="1"]
[*]
“BPM” (Business Process Management) is the discipline on how to think and work out what is required to create an outcome putting people first. This has been a movement in existence since late 90s as some in “IT” recognised the gap between people and large inflexible “silo” based systems (including Accounts). BPM applies to ”digitisation” evidenced by webinars titled “mastering digital transformation with BPM technologies”. This http://bpm.com/ has active forum where knowledge and views accessible.
[*]
“MDE” (Model Driven Engineering) that allows build with “no or low code” direct with users in their language. This is now being recognised as important exampled in this http://modeling-languages.com/mda-dead-long-live-mde-according-garner/ Gartner is the leading industry analyst who at last begins to understand. This a research paper I was asked to write based upon our 20+ years R&D and published 2014 as contribution to this subject http://www.igi-global.com/chapter/object-model-development-engineering/78620
[*]
“Adaptive” solutions are the desired outcomes with custom solutions capable of quick build and easy change. It also ensures the presentation and collection of data adapts to specific user and instance delivering real time data supporting all required reports including accounts. This may sound rather obvious but it is not how big systems including accounting systems actually work but this Adaptive capability is now recognised as a must for the future.
[/list]


In this forum BPMS has been largely dismissed as out of date thinking so looking at the coming year the real challenge is to apply a tag to the software that supports BPM? Yes looks like MDE maybe the “how” but we must focus on a term that business can understand and relate to all front end support requirement not just Case Management or CRM and other of the many other TLAs! My suggestion is “Adaptive” Solutions or Applications…..?

 

Another challenge facing the supply chain is that the cost to build and maintain is a fraction of current cost which opens doors to “ownership” of software as an asset with lease buy contracts removing any lock-in that is a lingering concern with many business people. This will impact the revenue streams of current supply chain and question the current SaaS model ……?

 

BUT will the industry rise to such challenges ....it will be very painful for some? As ever time will tell but all on my agenda!

 
Comment
Agree with

"the real challenge is to apply a tag to the software that supports BPM?"

but "MDE" is likely to cause an exodus to the hills for ordinary business folks.

On "opens doors to “ownership” of software as an asset with lease buy contracts" - not sure what that accomplishes for two reasons:

1) we have for years offered "private label", then staying up nights worrying about source code proliferation.

Our tech folks find this amusing - they claim we could hand out source on street corners and it would not damage our position, given that the code base runs 1,500,000 lines and takes us a year to train a new programmer.

2) we auto-export every keystroke to a generic data exchanger, so, in theory, any customer could leave us whenever they like.

This makes we wonder how worthwhile it is for vendors to try to hold their customers hostage. We have a couple of customers who have been with us since the year 2000.
  1. karl walter keirstead
  2. 1 month ago
  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 10
BPM has a lot of mileage and when the mix of unstructured work versus structured work reaches some tipping point, it seems a stretch to me to continue to claim that we are "managing processes".</p>
<p>
I have no problem with "process" but feel obligated to talk about "process fragments" to get away from the notion that all processes have to be 'end-to-end'</p>
<p>
I am not sure people in "business" actually manage their businesses via "processes".</p>
<p>
I see most of the time being spent on managing workflow and workload together across mulitiple Cases which have objectives, so IMO what management is doing today at the strategy level still is "managing by objectives". (Peter Drucker, <span class="st" data-hveid="60" data-ved="0ahUKEwj69bmw4Y7QAhWG5SYKHSYIB0wQ4EUIPDAD">1954, The Practice of Management)</span></p>
<p>
At the operational level, it seems more like it is "Cases" that are being managed (by Case Managers, who else?) and historically these are adaptive by nature, which probably is what brought some to ACM.<br />
<br />
Except that "Case Management" also has its problems - folks in some industry areas give you blank stares, but not in healthcare, law enforcement or legal.<br />
<br />
"Business Performance Management" works for me so long as the focus is on effectiveness first, then only, efficiency.<br />
<br />
I recall a question in a recent forum discussion about name changes “What do we call 'process' so the high growth CEO will see it as important?" and I wrote the following at the time.<br />
<br />
'Is it time to rename "Business Process Management" to "Business Performance Management"'?<br />
<br />
Lots of terminology here to keep people up at night (it's 0530 hrs here right now)</p>
<p>
 </p>
References
  1. http://wp.me/pzzpB-MB
Comment
RE "I am not sure people in "business" actually manage their businesses via "processes"." Yes, some of them do! My "litmus test" - those people are able to consistently explain to any stakeholder WHY their processes are as they are now.

The answer "we always do like that" may be considered also as some kind of BPM (Big Professional Mistake).
  1. Dr Alexander Samarin
  2. 1 month ago
Sure, and a good example of managing a business via a process is a cement plant.

The main focus of the stakeholders is on the process of mixing up slurry and getting it to flow through the kiln.
  1. karl walter keirstead
  2. 1 month ago
  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 11
Bogdan Nafornita Accepted Answer
As far as I'm concerned, there only one big question for BPM: "WILL IT BLEND???"

Will BPM seamlessly blend in ALL business practices? At ALL price points, in ALL geographies, in ALL business scenarios?

Because frankly ubiquity and accessibility is the only thing that makes a technology / practice revolutionary.

So, how can BPM focus its message and lower its build-up and distribution costs so that it represents a meaningful economic proposal for EVERYBODY?

I have yet to hear a customer saying: "man, I'm so worried about the state of the BPM market, it looks like it's dying".
Managing Founder, profluo.com
Comment
RE "So, how can BPM"

focus its message – being based on the systems approach (note: people are the most complex part of enterprise as a system)

lower its build-up and distribution costs – unification of 80-90 % of current BPM-suite tools, a process-pattern-based methodology for the rest and a good architecture with “an open door” for innovations.

so that it represents a meaningful economic proposal for EVERYBODY – again, use the systems approach for the enterprise’s & EVERYBODY’s surrounding systems.
  1. Dr Alexander Samarin
  2. 1 month ago
Enthusiasm, insight and vision! BPM-for-Everyone! Ubiquity, accessibility and revolution!

1) CHANNELS -- Regarding the question Dr. Samarin highlights the importance of architecture and patterns. It's worth noting that some business users will know this approach as an "Accelerator", i.e. a sales add-on for specific domains and business patterns, usually provided by major software vendors (for BPM or ERP or other major application category).

Accelerators or domain patterns could also be open sourced, and could be curated by boutique BPM consulting providers. On the topic of BPM consulting, I note that Gartner's "Hype Cycle for BPM 2015" includes an item for "Digital Business Consulting Services", still pre-peak in the "Innovation Trigger" phase.

/mixedMetaphors="on"

2) RISK -- Regarding end-users not caring about the state of a market, it's not uncommon for users to make a risk assessment concerning the viability of a technology, market and of course, vendor. Jumping on a bandwagon can be rational in terms of risk perception, even if sometimes the bandwagon turns out to be a bubble. Maybe end customers won't assess the health of the BPM market, but their consulting partner proxies will . . .

/mixedMetaphors="off"
  1. John Morris
  2. 1 month ago
  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 12
Eyal Katz Accepted Answer
We should add another axis here. If we're filtering business processes to the classic operational processes we consider BPM, we should also add an industry filter. For example, in retail and hospitality one of the biggest BPM concerns is related to the new legislation regarding overtime and contingetn workforce management, AKA the gig economy. The increase in part-time, freelance, and seasonal labor introduces new challenges to HR and operations departments like onboarding, training, and much more.
References
  1. https://connecteam.com/contingent-worker-innovation/how-to-manage-contingent-workforce-holiday-season/
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