|Written by Glenn Smith, Appian|
Many good articles have been written on how to succeed with BPM, particularly related to an enterprise’s first projects. They often cover project selection, tool selection, project team composition, deployment preparation and organizational change. All of these are important factors, successful BPM implementations change the way you do business. Any individual beginning with BPM would be well served by reading several of these.
1. BPM is a new toy bought by IT without a solid business sponsor. IT is forced to search for projects to justify the expense, but the business owners aren’t convinced that they need it. If the business users were not involved in product selection, the chosen tool may not match their needs. The business units don’t have budget or resources for BPM projects. They may resist a new approach being pushed on them. In some cases, IT uses it within their organization in an effort to claim success, but the savings are unlikely justify the expense, or lead to wider adoption.
2. The business decides to implement BPM without support from IT. Note, this is the opposite of the previous item. Success requires engagement from both the business owners who will reap the benefits and IT who will implement and support the solution. BPM is never truly a standalone solution, it is a layer on top of existing applications and infrastructure. Without proper consideration from IT before selection, the tool may not fit well into existing infrastructure.
We have described a number of factors which we have observed to be common causes of failure in initial BPM projects. Awareness of factors that have caused others to fail may help you avoid these common mistakes. It is critical that the first project be perceived as successful or subsequent projects are unlikely to be funded. Take these suggestions and adapt them to the specifics of your organization. We have found that avoiding these common mistakes significantly improves the odds of project success. The potential benefits of enterprise wide adoption are enormous. We hope that this article helps some of you achieve them.
About the Authors
Glenn Smith is a Principal Consultant with Appian. He has more than 20 years of software development experience including more than 10 years implementing enterprise BPM solutions. He can be contacted at email@example.com. Sylvain Furt, Senior Consultant at Appian, co-authored this piece, and can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.