In your experience, what do businesses underestimate the most when first beginning BPM?
Process doesn't constrain creativity, but enables it.
The enormous value of well defined and consistely followed processes - saved time, improved CX, corporate agililty, happier staff.
How bad your processes really are, because they are fixed through employee heroics....every single day.
How little of your company processes can be automated.
The fact that BPM is seen as "yet another improvement exercise"... The fact that BPM is seen as "something that needs to be done in order to automate stuff"... The fact that BPM is implemented as a project... (ugh)... and the list goes on.
But at the top of such a list (and I do agree here with with Ian):The fact that culture eats your (BPM) strategy for breakfast...
They typically underestimate the need to simply discover and explain the process to themselves. They underestimate how important this is, as well as how much they will have to learn. People working in a company (that is more than half competent) generally believe they understand the process that they are doing. In practice, few people understand the detail for more than their part of the process, plus a vague understanding a few other parts.
Generally people overestimate the importance of automation. Believing they understand the process, they focus effort on automating it. What happens is they enter into process discovery, something they thought would be trivial because "everyone knows the process" and they find out that everyone has a different impression of the process. This delays the automation -- and the project starts to look like a failure.
It would be better if they had an appropriate appreciation of what they don't know. But who can ever appreciate what they don't know?
Most overlooked is the power of BPM to go beyond simple automation of manual processes. BPM technology may have started out as a "process improvement" vehicle, but its real power lies in its potential to completely transform the way your business works. As Forrester is fond of pointing out, customers are now in the driver's seat. Using BPM to create an integrated customer experience—one which can easily be changed or adapted as market conditions or customer preferences shift—creates a competitive advantage that is hard to overcome using traditional approaches.
The freedom of being released from old IT ways with associated resistance! What this does creates an environment which can truly empower people and encourages to think of better ways to achieve outcomes. Fewer managers are needed and perhaps therein lies the real challenge for senior management who see the benefits of moving on from command and control style of management to one of bottom up empowerment and measurement all of which BPM with good supporting software enables.
Interesting discussion and great points.