What is business process management (BPM)? Definition

BPM is used to achieve sustainable improvements in business processes.
The result: continuous efficiency gains and enormous time savings.

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October 16, 2020
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7 min reading time
Was ist Business Process Management (BPM)? Headerbild
Inhaltsverzeichnis
  1. Business Process Management - Definition
  2. Why Business Process Management?
  3. BPM Meaning
  4. When is BPM useful?
  5. Is BPM relevant for you?
  6. Advantages of BPM
  7. Digitization facilitated by BPM
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Business process management (BPM) is about improving business processes from start to finish. The BPM cycle proceeds as follows: The process should first be analysed, then modelled and finally optimised. Once a business process has been optimised, it needs to be monitored and continuously improved.


Why business process management?

With business process management (BPM), business functions can be tailored to customer needs. The aim is to automate and continuously improve business processes, with a view to promoting order, greater efficiency, increased time savings, and much more. This option to control innumerable processes enables businesses to continuously optimise their operations and to create a more efficient organisation. This puts managers in a position to better understand the various processes in their company and to continuously improve them. A second objective of business process definition is to use BPM to reduce errors, minimise waste and thus offer better products and services.

What does BPM – business process management – stand for?

Business process management is a management framework for designing, executing, controlling and optimising a company's processes. By definition, a business process is one or a series of activities designed to achieve a specific organisational goal. The aim is to improve one or more business processes from start to finish, and to ensure that they are constantly being revised. Companies can choose from a variety of BPM methods, such as Six Sigma or lean process management. Finally, the main aims of BPM are process optimisation, i.e. leaner processes that enable more efficient work, and process automation to simplify daily operations while minimising errors.

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When does business process management make sense?

A company's success often depends on how well its internal processes match customer requirements. With the introduction of BPM, organisations have the opportunity to digitalise or modernise their business processes and thereby to establish agile working methods. Important elements in this respect are the modelling of these processes, their targeted implementation and monitoring as well as continuous optimisation. Given its cyclical nature, the process-oriented BPM method takes the form of an open-ended project with the goal of continuously improving the entire organisation. BPM provides an overview of processes and helps to redefine, map and coordinate them. As such, it facilitates agile action through long-term improvement of the associated processes.

When is business process management important for your company?

Every company is host to a vast number of processes, be it holiday requests, procurement processes, enquiries or customer requests for spare parts, for example. As such, the question arises as to how a stable and secure flow of information can be guaranteed in these areas. BPM is particularly beneficial in the case of long-running, stateful processes involving human interaction, where it can be used to create noticeable added value by increasing process transparency and flexibility.

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What are the advantages of business process management?

Efficiency gains are one of the fundamental advantages of this method. BPM delivers information, such as a request, to the right place and the right person within a reasonable time. In addition, it enables a better distribution of resources, the automation of processes and optimised collaboration. This is done by comparing actual process indicators with planning data in order to evaluate and control business processes. With the "BPM Wiki" platform, you can visualise process diagrams, share them within a community and ultimately improve the business process diagram. It also contains a large repository of knowledge, process management definitions and explanations related to BPM processes.

How can business process management (BPM) facilitate digitalisation in companies?

Business success largely depends on the extent to which a company can meet the requirements and demands of customers in the digital world. Business process management plays an important role in this regard because it can make it significantly easier to introduce the necessary changes. It provides an essential foundation for the successful implementation of digital strategies and initiatives. Furthermore, a BPM process can also be seen as an important digitalisation driver, without which companies will find it difficult to handle their huge amounts of data in the long term.

The aim of BPM is to promote holistic implementation and foster sustainable collaboration between the digital, process and IT communities. Companies also face the challenge of handling numerous IT systems and storage locations, which can lead to process gaps that pose an obstacle to efficient operations. Business process management helps to combine several areas and close these gaps.

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