Business process management tools help a company analyze the internal functions used to complete tasks and activities. Owners and managers use these tools to achieve goals like profit maximization, cutting costs or improving quality. Common tools include standard manual analysis, enterprise resource applications and computerized systems designed for business process management. The first tool is the cheapest and allows for complete customization. The latter two business process management tools are often expensive and require a large capital outlay to work with the company’s current system.
The standard business process management tool includes five steps: design, modeling, execution, monitoring and optimization. The first two tools focus on the creation of the business process model. Owners and managers spend copious amounts of time reviewing their internal operations and finding ways to improve upon current models. Front line managers and high-level workers may help create models that will work well with the company’s current systems. The company may create several models and then select the one that works best.
Standard business process management tools also include steps for execution, monitoring and optimization. The first step is the process of putting the model into place and making it a part of regular operations. This may require some down time in the company to get the model working. Monitoring and optimization allow owners and managers to review the process and discover ways to improve upon the process. Few implemented processes go without updates or improvements once started in the firm.
Enterprise resource applications work as business process management tools when combined with a company’s current resource application system. This system can be quite expensive to implement, as it represents a new module in the application system. It may also require more computers or servers to help run the process management tools. Overall, the enterprise resource application tool automates the steps in the standard business process management tools. The system gathers data and allows the company to make changes to the model without going through the manual processes.
Computerized business process management tools are stand-alone software applications that help improve the functionality of processes. These are often able to improve employee productivity and allow for easier management review. The tool helps by performing business analytics and content management. Each of these reduces the amount of upfront work employees complete and allows them to focus more on completing specific tasks than performing standard operations.