BPM architecture is intended to ensure that a company automates its business processes. It can be said that BPM architecture is a general definition of an entire system of processes.
When defining BPM architecture, a company needs to make a connection between the team and the available workforce, as well as with the dominant resources and technologies to determine how to achieve strategic objectives as efficiently as possible, creating value at each stage of the chain.
The intended use of good BPM architecture is to improve processes and hence optimize results. Also, it is necessary that the BPM architecture contained in the BPM tool employed provides a full possibility of system customization used to meet the specific characteristics of each organization.
In this context, understand that BPM architecture must contain features that meet the whole life-cycle of process management in a comprehensive way, from modeling to monitoring. Check out all the steps in this cycle:
Process stages that must be performed by BPM architecture:
- Model processes
- Model data
- Define formulas
- Define business rules
- Define participants
- Define integrations
- Simulate processes
- Run processes
- Monitor processes
Thus, the better the execution of each phase of the cycle is, the better the BPM architecture will be.
In the last phase, to monitor the process properly, promote continuous improvement by analyzing this data, transforming it into information and modeling new processes that are even more efficient and effective, follow this cycle continuously to a new stage of monitoring and a new consequent improvement.
BPM architecture and BPM tools
Currently, BPM is strongly supported by BPM software and management tools that assist in the structuring of BPM architecture and, therefore, it’s vital that they contain these features:
- A visualization of the processes
- A simulation of the processes
- The ability to monitor activity
- The ability to create and use business rules
- The integration of systems and data
- The possibility of carrying out workflow activities
- The utilization of BPM notation
From these features, any tool can properly assist in structuring BPM architecture.
Also, it’s only possible to call architecture effective if there’s a culture of process established in the company.
And to know if your company has this culture ingrained, you can apply this checklist:
- Does everyone in the company know what the business processes are?
- Are there formal owners of processes?
- Are processes documented?
- Is the value chain clearly defined?
- Is everyone aware that the execution of each process is important to the execution of the others?
- Are the skills needed to perform each process defined?
- Is there a perception of quality in each process?
- Are measurements of each process results being done?
- Are decisions made based on these performances?
If the organization does not seem to be prepared to adopt good BPM architecture, two steps can be taken:
- The implementation of a process office.
- The implementation of a professional responsible for BPM architecture.
The Process Office
The process office can become the guardian of architecture, avoiding the disruption of management initiatives based on processes. Normally a process office has autonomy of action and reports directly to top management. Moreover, it has a leader, a Chief Process Officer, who in addition to leading his team, will also liaise with those in the company who need the support of the process office.
Its people are totally focused on professional processes, with no other operating activities in the company, the office has a high level of experienced personnel, experts in the field who can maintain BPM architecture safe from interference.
A Process Architect is a professional who can assist the office in this task very well.
The Process Architect
It’s a developer focused on maintaining BPM architecture to ensure its continued development, based on market references and in particular conclusions by continuous improvement processes, supported by BPM tools, as detailed in the first topic of this text: Process steps that must be done in BPM architecture.
Several concepts have been presented here to better understand the importance of BPM architecture in a company.
In any case, the architecture will only work with the help of an efficient and transparent BPM tool, which besides process modeling and monitoring, also assists in communicating information through the company.
Find out more about the BPM approach here.