Powerful but not a panacea, big BPM must make some resolutions in 2016. Big BPM needs to get in the gym and quit the smoke & mirrors. From my vantage point as a Senior Software Engineer on HighGear, the Lean BPM pioneer, here are the areas where I think the BPM industry must adapt to the needs of your organization or else fade into obsolescence:
Sublime Out-of-the-Box User Experience
Hoops. No one wants to jump through them. If you’re a process designer or process owner, you aren’t trying to make your end users jump through hoops, but BPM software doesn’t have user interfaces that simple, easy-to-use and pleasant. Yet user adoption is the single biggest obstacle to a successful BPM implementation.
Big BPM Resolution #1: Come out-of-the-box with a sublime user experience (UX). UX that makes end users happy to be manning the help desk or managing a process. UX to inspire end users rather than frustrate or alienate them. (I strongly recommend you read this blog post by my colleague, Mark Porter and his take on coding and UX).
“Test Drive” Sales Process
There are too many failed implementations of big BPM for consumers to accept the risk of buying before trying. Yet big BPM vendors continue to obstruct access to details about their software’s features and capabilities.
Big BPM Resolution #2: Let potential customers sign up for a trial of the software and take it out for a test drive before they buy. Related: Stop hiding all useful information, e.g. pricing, from the people who most need it.
Ergonomic Steering Wheel
The implementation of a big BPM system is vastly complex. In addition to time-consuming process discovery and design – code must be written, reports built, and the list goes on. Besides the immense cost of this, the complexity of the implementation prohibits nimble course corrections as the business goals change, which they will.
Big BPM Resolution #3: Give an ergonomic steering wheel to managers, business analysts, and stakeholders. Allow them to set up, direct, and adapt the business processes themselves.