Goodbye sticky notes and white boards.
Business process mapping is harder than many people initially think it will be. According to to Brian Safron, a product manager at IBM, this is due at least in part to business knowledge being spread across a wide range of subject matter experts. Collaboration is key, but in their promotional video for IBM Blueworks Live, he also notes that sticky notes and white boards don't work anymore. We decided to take a look at why paper can't keep up with digital when it comes to BPM.
1. Innovation & Collaboration Should Be a Constant
The idea of white boards and sticky notes automatically makes me think of a brainstorm session, a group working to solve something or to document a process. The value here is that face to face interaction is important, but this shouldn't be the only time people are communicating, collaborating and being innovative. We live in a fast-paced world so that's what many companies need to keep up with to stay competitive.
The secret to that is making it easy for staff to communicate, collaborate and innovate as part of their work on a day to day basis. It needs to be built in to processes themselves – either for changes or for new processes.
If there's a problem with a process, it needs to be easy to feedback to the process owner. If regulation requires a change, that change should be simple to implement. Paper or text based procedures don't cater well for this. While many digital BPM systems offer these functions, they're often not well-used or well-understood. In many cases, users of the system aren't even aware of these capabilities. A BPMS still requires knowledge and training to ensure every member of a team full understands their role, and the space for them to make valuable contributions. If you can do this 'as you go', you're less likely to have forgotten about that niggly little problem by the time someone calls a meeting to discuss improvements that could be made.
2. Digital's Role in Business Process Management
BPM practices exist to make organisations better run, more efficient, more competitive and ensure there's a good culture where employees are happy and have great job satisfaction. Mapping or documenting processes or procedures on paper, is sadly, outdated. It may be where you work out the guts of a full process, but for change management requirements that will come up more and more frequently, making a quick digital change should be easy, fast and something your team are comfortable with and well-trained in. Training is key. But even that should be easily created, replicated and changed.
3. Mapping the Mapping
No one ever said the move from a paper based world to a digital environment would be easy, but there are significant benefits. Luckily, some companies have been through this process over and over and over again; discovering common challenges and key considerations each time, until a perfect model for implementation was created. We are of course talking about Torque Management. TPSoP® is a methodology created by Torque Management after numerous experiences in ensuring organisations were functioning optimally.
TPSoP® is a solution for the development of process-centric procedures that creates a comprehensive, visual and user-friendly environment and it takes your business needs fully into account, as it's underpinned by our expertise in Six Sigma, Lean and BPM and capable of integrating and removing waste for compliance, regulatory and safety procedures.
What more could you want from a BPM methodology in the 21st century?