Art of Business Process Management (Digital Edition)

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The Art of Business Process Management (digital)

BPM Strategy and Real-World Execution

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Review by Derek Miers, Industry Analyst
This book is going to appeal to those getting into BPM and struggling to engage colleagues into the journey. It provides realistic and pragmatic guidance on how to approach BPM initiatives, along with a wide range of modern case studies developed by those who have undertaken real BPM programs.
For those setting out on the BPM journey, you'll find the direct guidance on business case development and ROI calculation examples particularly useful. Perhaps more importantly, the case study authors also share their real-world best practices and pitfalls to avoid.
Given that it is a contributed book (I wrote the foreword to set the tone), you cannot expect that all the methods and approaches presented are consistent. This represents the very broad range of techniques and approaches prevalent within the discipline, which has wide applicability to how business is carried out today.

This book goes to the heart of what is driving interest in BPM today – the ability to improve and automate how we manage both our business processes and the information that supports them. The authors discuss the impact of new technologies, the mandate for greater transparency, and how the ongoing aftershocks of globalization have collectively impacted predictability within the business enterprise.

As co-author Nathaniel Palmer points out, as a result, sustainable competitive advantage no longer comes from scale and efficiency but adaptability – the ability to process streams of information flows, make sense of these, and rapidly translate these into effective responses designed for precision rather than repeatability.

In addition to the highly insightful and thoughtful white papers contributed by industry thought leaders, this book provides compelling award-wining case studies written by those who have been through the full BPM experience.

These case studies describe the skills involved to generate successful ROIs and competitive advantages gained through BPM and the writers also generously share solid advice on how to avoid the pitfalls they personally encountered– and overcame.

BPM is essential to a company's survival in today's hyper-speed business environment. The Art of BPM is to empower an enterprise to compete at the highest level in any marketplace. 

Section 1: The Art of BPM Strategy

Foreword: Change the Trajectory

Derek Miers, Structure Talent Ltd, United Kingdom

When you reimagine change—when you refocus the trajectory—to become more of a conversation on the why rather than just the how; outside-in, building an engaged and involved workforce; that’s when you’ll get real and sustainable change.

The Heart of BPM

Nathaniel Palmer, BPM, Inc., USA  

The impact of new technologies, the mandate for greater transparency, and the ongoing aftershocks of globalization have collectively removed nearly any trace of predictability within the business environment. As a result, sustainable competitive advantage no longer comes from scale and efficiency but adaptability – the ability to process streams of information flows, make sense of these, and rapidly translate these into effective responses designed for precision rather repeatability.

The Process of Process Management

Strategy Execution in a Digital World

Dr Mathias Kirchmer and Peter Franz, BPM-D

Business strategies and operations need to consider scores of ever-shifting factors: from demographic changes, capital availability and legal regulations to technological innovations and an all present digitalization. Static business models do not keep pace with this dynamic change. Companies need a management approach that fits to this volatile environment. Organizations need to execute their strategy systematically and deal proactively with our “digital world”. In effect, they must know how and when to modify or enhance their business processes, to know which processes are best candidates for intervention, and how to move rapidly from strategy to execution.

Accelerating Value by Rebooting Enterprise Architecture

Linus Chow, Thomas J. Cozzolino, David Grimm, Salesforce

Shifts in people, processes, information and technology are key factors in how Modern Architectures are both disrupting and providing value to Enterprises.

This seismic shift is forcing a hard look at the value of traditional Enterprise Architecture (EA), and leading the demand for strategic transformational outcomes that “Modern” EA needs to enable.

We will look at how and why we need to “reboot” EA to understand specific focus areas for change. Additionally, we will discuss how to transform EA from a “noun” (artifact and meta-work focused) to a “verb” (acceleration and business outcome-focused). Finally, we discuss best practice approaches to assist EA to become both a leader of, and a partner in, building this new world. 

Section 2: The Skill of BPM Execution

Award-winning Case Studies

Admin Re, U.K

Nominated by Corporate Modelling, UK

Part of the Swiss Re group, Admin Re UK is a specialist in the run-off of legacy closed life business portfolios with a proven track record in the administration of life, pensions and health business and the acquisition of entire life insurance companies. Our organization continues to grow through merger and acquisitions and strategic client and third party partnerships, underpinned by solid and efficient customer servicing at a low cost that is highly compliant and low risk.

AGESIC: e-Notifications in the e-Government Agency, Uruguay

Agencia para el Desarrollo del Gobierno de Gestión Electrónica y la Sociedad de la Información y del Conocimiento - AGESIC

Nominated by INTEGRADOC, Uruguay

This case study details the experience of transforming a costly paper-based, mostly manual process, to permit government entities to notify and communicate with citizens, into a highly automated, completely electronic system that achieves legal compliance. The scope of the system is extensive, with the system expected to reach every citizen, public entity and private company in the country.

The project was executed by the AGESIC, the Uruguayan Agency for the Development of Electronic Government and Information Society and Knowledge. This agency depends on the Uruguay Republic’s Presidency, although it has technical autonomy.

The Electronic Communications and Notifications system is intended to eliminate paper in the communications between government and citizens. Every citizen, private company, and public entity will have one centralized electronic address (“inbox”) to receive electronic communications and notifications over the Internet, with legal compliance, from all public entities. This replaces the need for people to visit government buildings to receive paper-based notifications or communications.

AgFirst Farm Credit Bank, USA

Nominated by Bizagi, United Kingdom

AgFirst is part of the national Farm Credit System, the largest agricultural lending organization in the United States. With assets of more than $27 billion, AgFirst provides funding and financial services to 19 farmer-owned financial cooperatives in 15 eastern states and Puerto Rico. These cooperatives, operating as Farm Credit and AgCredit agricultural credit associations (ACAs), offer real estate and production financing to more than 80,000 farmers, agribusinesses and rural homeowners.

Business Partners, South Africa

Nominated by Pétanque Consultancy, South Africa

Business Partners, a $US342m+ risk finance lender, applied process design and a change management campaign to improve customer experience.

The campaign, dubbed “The Transformers” set out to:

  1. Reduce approval and implementation processes, resulting in Customer Excellence;
  2. Improve efficiencies and turnaround time; and
  3. Increase revenue by 20 percent.

The process changes were substantial, and this required a coordinated, top management-supported change management program to coincide with the process changes.

Chicago Parks District, USA

Nominated by Sofbang and Oracle, USA

The Chicago Park District (CPD) is one of the largest municipal park systems in the US. It is responsible for more than 8,100 acres of green space, including 580 parks, 77 pools, and 26 miles of lakefront and beaches. CPD implemented an integrated custom and off-the-shelf solution to streamline operations for interdepartmental efficiency across the organization, saving costs and eliminating duplication of efforts. An integrated BPM platform enables the enterprise to work within its specific applications, such as E-Business and Enterprise Project Management products, and ensures effective collaboration across these integral departments.

Delta Lloyd, the Netherlands

Nominated by You-Get, the Netherlands

Delta Lloyd Group is an expert, reliable and accessible financial services provider. We have a single goal: to offer security to our customers, now and in the future. We operate under three strong brands: Delta Lloyd, OHRA and ABN AMRO Insurance.

Our product and service offering covers the areas of insurance, pensions, investing and banking. And we do not only service consumers, but small and large companies, multinationals and pension funds as well.

Delta Lloyd has been a trusted partner for insurance, pensions, investing and banking since 1807. It is our goal to offer financial security, now and in the future. We deliver clear, reliable and contemporary products and services that meet our customers' needs and create value for them, our shareholders and our employees.

Freedom Mortgage, USA

This case study details the Retail Title Track Rewrite Process.

Title Ordering and Review are key components of the mortgage financing process. Title ordering and the title search process reveal the financial obligations that could potentially impact the sale of the property, including such actions such as lawsuits, liens, legal claims, etc. The mortgage lender holds responsibility for the title review process.

The change to this process impacted the Title department, closers, mortgage applicants, title providers, and FMCs management team. FMCs Title Process dramatically changed the once manually intensive title ordering/review process. The Retail Title Process Rewrite Project uses a BPM solution to modify the timing of the preliminary title review, indexes title documents to the EDMS(Electronic Document Management System), modifies the ownership of activities to make the Exception Reviewer the performer of all post-Exception Review tasks; and allows delivery of a title order cancellation event to the integrated Title Vendor terminating both the BPM and external systems' instances.

GE Avio Srl, Italy

Nominated by EKA Srl, Italy

In 2012 Avio SpA, now General Electric Avio, supplier of engine modules and components, started a new project to modernize the management and dissemination of quality procedures.

Promoted by the Quality Unit, this initiative involved an inter-disciplinary project team composed by several divisions (e.g. Purchase, Business, and Logistics) with the additional participation of the IT Unit and EKA Srl, in charge of IT system development. The new approach consists of a quality system that aims to map operational processes and gathers them under a unique reference tool to all procedures.

The platform consists of a multi-language web-based solution developed by Signavio GmbH, enabling collaborative modeling and optimizing business processes according to BPMN 2.0 standard. The platform combines professional BPM with the advantages of collaboration during the design phase: a certified cloud platform that ensures the preservation of confidential avionic information.

Generali CEE Holding B.V.

Nominated by Bizagi, United Kingdom

Generali CEE Holding(Generali) is a leading insurance group in Central and Eastern Europe with total assets under management of €14.8 billion and more than 11 million clients.

In 2011-2014, we embarked on “Project Puccini,” a large-scale initiative to significantly boost process visibility, productivity and efficiency in the area of Corporate Risks underwriting for 10 countries throughout Central and Eastern Europe.

We needed to support the most complex insurance processes in a multi-company, multi-language environment. Potential systems were assessed on their ability to deliver strong case management, analytics and workflow through the whole corporate insurance policies lifecycle.

BPMS was chosen over in-house development and an Out of the Box Policy administration system for the costs saving, functionality and ease of integration. Following deployment and delivery, Project Puccini has come to life and matured into full policy administration; and today, BPM extends beyond Corporate Insurance.

Melitta, Brazil

Nominated by Lecom S/A, Brazil

Melitta of Brazil, a unit of the German multinational coffee giant, Melitta, found operational barriers that impacted their costs and their agility. Therefore, the intention to improve their business routine was to break barriers between their locations, eliminating the circulation of papers, reduce the number of licenses used for approvals in ERP, integrating legacy systems and thus speed up the execution time of processes.

After studying the scenario of Melitta, flows that met these needs were created and the result was the highlight for the reduction of cost and time..

South East Water

Nominated by South East Water, Australia

South East Water (SEW) credited customers with $3,500,000 in allowances for unexplained high usage and leaks that occurred on their properties in the 2012/13 financial year. It was projected that it would credit customers with $4,400,000 in the 2013/14 financial year.

A BPM project was launched to reduce this amount substantially. It involved 17 teams from across the organization, ranging from customer service teams to plumbing services, debt management, legal and IT.

Through changes in policy and process, and with significant change management efforts, the project delivered $1,140,000 for the financial year, which equated to $1,500,000 on an annualized basis.

Still not sure if this book is right for you? Download a free chapter now: 

Accelerating Value by Rebooting Enterprise Architecture by Linus Chow, Thomas J. Cozzolino, David Grimm, Salesforce 


How to  Submit an Entry in the Annual Awards

The annual WfMC Awards for Global Excellence in BPM are sponsored by and The prestigious annual Awards are highly coveted by organizations that seek recognition for their achievements. These awards not only provide a spotlight for companies that truly deserve recognition, but provide tremendous insights for organizations wishing to emulate the winners’ successes.

General information and guidelines for submissions are at