Digital transformation has created many opportunities for companies.
One is to be able to work together with other organizations, through the integration of processes. Partners, customers, suppliers and even competitors (in purchasing cooperatives, for example) can work together to achieve better results.
To achieve these goals, there is a methodology called BPI – Business Process Integration. It aims to promote this integration in a harmonious way and with benefits for all involved, without forgetting internal business integration.
In this post, you will learn what BPI is and how it can be applied in your company. Find out the 5 steps for implementing process integration in your business.
Why do companies want to adopt BPI – Business Process Integration?
Companies seek, through BPI, a way not only to integrate applications and systems internally. The goal is bigger: they want to relate and exchange information externally, with the tools and data from partners, suppliers and customers.
In the same way that an ERP (Integrated Management System) generates more transparency, agility and reliability in the management of a company, BPI acts in a similar way between companies.
Thus, the needs of all are aligned with the objectives of the business, which brings transparency, agility and flexibility to companies. The result is more efficiency and innovation.
This is because some of the processes dominated by organizations external to your business are unknown or few are exploited in your organization. And it works the other way around, too.
For example, a company that produces wooden furniture for hotels does not understand anything about hospitality, much less about forest cultivation and the extraction of timber.
However, if everyone could align their goals, it may be possible to create integrated and innovative processes, from planting trees to the use of wooden furniture by hotel guests.
With all stakeholders exchanging information, it is possible to create integrated processes that are much more objective and efficient for the group. Thus, more value is delivered to end customers using fewer resources.
Imagine that the hotel knows that its customers prefer furniture made with light wood and with certain colouring and shape. If this information is shared with the logger and the furniture factory, the whole value chain can prepare for this.
Thus, the integration of processes goes beyond the boundaries of the company and encompasses each stage of the production process, in different organizations.
But, what is BPI, that allows it to advantage businesses in such a way?
That’s what we’ll see in the next topic!
What is BPI – Business Process Integration?
According to the International Conference on e-Business – ICEBE, we can define what BPI – Business Process Integration is, as follows:
“Business Process Integration (BPI) is a crucial technique for supporting interorganizational business interoperability. BPI enables the automation of business processes and the integration of systems into several organizations “
In this sense, the integration of organizational process models is one of the most used approaches to achieve BPI.
But integrating models is very complex. Therefore, it requires process analysts to have extensive experience.
Therefore, it is crucial to follow a rigorous and careful step by step in pursuit of BPI.
Without this, in addition to wasting precious time by “walking around in circles,” you will not achieve the desired benefits in terms of agility, innovation and customer satisfaction.
Now that it’s clear to you what BPI is, let’s take a step-by-step approach to implementing it in your company.
The 5 steps for implementing BPI in your company
1- Identification of business processes
The first step in implementing BPI is to identify processes. For this, there is nothing more appropriate than using business process mapping tools. Good BPM software, in addition to mapping, also enables process modeling and automation.
In this way, you know in real time the process’s performance and the adjustments you need to make to promote continuous improvement.
With processes identified, automated and optimized, you need to define a way to share them with other organizations. Documentation is the next step.
HEFLO is a complete BPM software that does everything from mapping and modeling and documentation to automation.
Check out this video from our BPMN training, and learn more about process modeling:
2- Process documentation
The traditional way of sharing a process is through documentation.
Typically printed or PDF documents (and even Word) are created specifying all the details of the process, the person in charge, tasks and decision making.
Some BPM tools, such as HEFLO, do the documentation automatically, based on the process diagram itself, created in the tool through a drag-and-drop interface.
Of course, this speeds up the consolidation and exchange of information. See in the image below how people can view, approve, and send suggestions for documented processes.
But what if, through authorizations with login and password, the analysts and process owners of partner organizations could access the process diagrams of other organizations and edit them in the tool simultaneously?
3 – Collaborative modeling of newly integrated processes
Without the use of collaborative BPM tools, you’ll need to share the documentation, wait for the analysts at each company to study them, and set up meetings to define what the integrated processes will look like.
With the use of the collaborative tool, this will be much easier.
Everyone who has access to the process models can make changes and create new process diagrams from the existing ones without losing the previous ones.
One can even capture one process from one organization (already modeled in the tool) “copy and paste” into another and integrate it quickly.
In addition, everyone can make comments and suggestions in the processes as others model and adjust them.
4 – Implementation
As the tool also automates the processes, implementation is very agile and can be accompanied by all the organizations involved.
A request made by one company can trigger a process in the other that, through the same flow of tasks, triggers the suppliers in a third company, and so on.
5- Monitoring and continuous improvement
Like there is in a BPM process, the BPI process provides for the creation of KPIs to track processes.
Thus, together, companies and organizations can assess whether integrations are having the desired effects and provide the necessary adjustments and improvements to the processes.
All this in a transparent way and based on facts and figures.
So, what do you think of doing BPI – Business Process Integration – with the help of a BPM tool?
Does your business use BPI? What do you think of the idea?
Share your BPI experience with us! Tell us how you use it in your business.
And if this is news to you, what do you think? Are our companies mature enough to exchange information in real time in this way?
Leave your opinion in the comments.