The discipline of business process analysis has been gaining considerable traction in recent years as software solutions have become increasingly smarter and ever wider aspects of company’s processes and divisions are becoming inter-connected.
When it comes to the uptake of business process software Australia is at the forefront of this vast technology revolution. Organisations across the country, and of widely varying sizes and proportions, are embracing the capabilities and promises that this technology offers on their quest to gain competitive advantage.
So, for those looking to rise to the challenge, here we discuss the core considerations that any project or management team should be looking at prior to deciding upon a potential partner and solution.
Business workflow is the term given to the paths and processes that people, products & data take during the completion of a specific process. Of course, that process could be literally anything within a business. For example, when an emergency call reaches a technical support desk, what and how many steps are taken before an engineer gets to site? Is it an efficient process or could it be done better?
Alternatively, when an order is placed on an ecommerce website, consider the number of steps that it takes and both the people and departments that might be involved in fulfilling that order and getting it successfully dispatched. Dependent on the size of the business involved, these steps could be relatively simple, but in the case of larger organisations, many of whom constantly scrutinise themselves in the quest to minimise costs and keep their budgets in check, a complex process might offer ample opportunity to turn orders around quicker, by streamline the working process and reducing hold points in the chain of events.
In the above example, from first receiving the order from the website, to having it successfully delivered to the customer, numerous key procedures need to happen one after the other; the order needs to be checked and confirmed that it is correct, the appropriate stock needs to be available to pick, the customer’s method of payment first has to clear with the bank, and only then can that specific job be forwarded onto the right department where it then needs to be gathered, fulfilled, labelled and packaged, then collected by the courier or postal service, all before it’s even left the building. Whilst none of the above scenario is likely to be unique or challenging, key to its efficiency is the ability for one process to happen fluidly after the previous one, and before the next one.
Invariably in any process there are one or more hold points, basically weaknesses where hold ups can and do occur with both frequency and annoyance. Much like the analogy of the chain only being as strong as its weakest link, these problematic stages within any process are the ones that hinder it the most.
Business process software systems are proven to work in scenarios exactly like this by enabling the identification of specific hold points and enabling them to be fixed. The features and opportunities afforded by the software allow the analytical net to be cast far and wide within business of complete diverse practices, and the benefits of their findings is the beginning of turning a complex and convoluted business into a streamlined, uber-performing organisation.