Why BPM and Why not ERP?
Initially ERP was introduced as a package composed of best practices frameworks. ERP takes care of all the core business processes across the departments. But it failed miserably to integrate with other external systems and business partners. Another major drawback of ERPs is its rigid structure which gives little scope for customization. Hence the organizations are forced to adjust their business processes to fit the standardized process models embedded in the ERP. This puts IT ahead of business where it should be the other way around.
As everyone knows business should adapt to the continuously changing environment. To change the technology and the IT infrastructure according to the changing business needs, organizations should have deep pockets. Also it takes months or sometimes years to complete the customization. By that time, the business would have shifted to another dimension forcing another set of changes. Most of the organizations cannot afford such costly affairs.
Though ERP gives operational visibility which was much needed during 90s, it fails to give the consolidated view of the complete business. It is no wonder nowadays that the numerous business processes reaches outside the organization that are out of the scope of ERP. Starting from filling out the purchase form to the interaction with the business partners requires much needed integration which ERP cannot handle on its own. Overall efficiency of the organization depends on the effectiveness of each of these complex business processes. Hence it is important to integrate ERP with other systems to improve the effectiveness of the processes.
Meanwhile Companies also implements other applications such as CRM, SCM, etc. to satisfy needs of different departments which take the IT infrastructure back to the same old days of information silos.
BPM came as a rescue which enables the alignment of company’s internal and external processes along with the integration of different IT systems. BPM helps in extracting more value out of the existing systems. The ultimate goal of BPM is to gain flexibility, agility and visibility into the overall performance of the company’s business processes and ensuring uniform execution of complex business processes which spans across the boundary of the organization.