Friday, March 30, 2012

Clouded Judgement?

So it seems like the jury is still out on how well BPM will migrate to the cloud but that doesn’t seem to have interrupted the momentum in the least bit! Many will agree that the exciting thing about cloud, apart from being an option to On Premise is the opportunity for new business and software delivery models to develop. At some level, this sort of innovation has to mean improved functionality and cost efficiencies.

But hosting a BPM tool on the cloud also means that first level of engagement now rests with the end user rather than the “IT department” – this is a huge challenge which begs for new ways to deliver BPM on the cloud.  

Remember when Cloud solutions were served up through some clearly defined delivery models ? 

- Software as a service (SaaS) which may be termed very simply as on demand software (and associated data) that is hosted centrally and delivered on browser

- Platform as a service ( PaaS) or the middle layer that provides a computing platform or solution stack as a service

- Infrastructure as a service (IaaS) that offers physical or virtual machines from data centers billed typically on a utility computing basis

Then with the kind of huge investments biggies such as Amazon, Rackspace and Microsoft put behind Cloud, everyone was hard pressed to jump on the Cloud bandwagon - sometimes with little or no readiness. Newer delivery models with no gestation became words being bandied about. So now along with  Enterprise as a service (EaaS) and Business Process as a Service (BPaaS) the new kid on the overcrowded block is - iPaaS (Integration Platform as a service).   But more on that in another post.

For now, how do organizations differentiate the real deal from a drummed up version? As Hollis Tibbets succinctly  puts it “if it's not multi-tenant, if it's not elastic, if it's not scalable, if it doesn't have modern tools for development and management (i.e. it looks more like Windows 3.1 than Browser) then it's not the real deal …”

What I think though is that if we look beyond the multiple messages all clamoring for space, one of the clearly visible benefits that emerge is that BPM on the cloud transforms the value chain for Enterprise – a neutral space outside a firewall means capturing participation from customer and partner facing processes for true collaboration. 

But what with many organizations viewing BPM on cloud as the answer to their unresolved process issues, the waters are only going to get muddier before we begin to understand the true and tangible value of BPM on cloud – any way it is served.


Thursday, March 15, 2012

Invensys Skelta Partner Contest Winner!

Invensys Skelta (BPM software provider) VAR - The IT Bunch win "Name the Whitepaper Contest" with their inspiring title text.

"The aggregation of Business: ROEI and Skelta BPM"! 

Thursday, March 1, 2012

BPO Business Transformation through BPM?

The BPO business hub in India has been growing at the rate of 70% every year and is now worth $1.6 billion. In an industry that employs 1, 00,000 people, there is bound to be cost competitiveness due to the sheer numbers –in other words, high volume intellectual capital. For business success in what is already a crowded space, only 100% customer delight can make the cut and spell the difference between high profitability and a mad clamor to stay afloat.
So what is in the BPO success mix?
Cost savings obviously – the bedrock of the BPO industry
      Increased efficiencies through optimized SLA management
      Increased bottom-lines
      Response to change

In order to consolidate and find new differentiators, BPM promises operational efficiency in a sector heavily dependent on quality and rapid turnaround.  So Business Process Management and BPO are all about cutting costs but if you cut to the chase what is it about a BPM product that delivers value here? It has to be about getting your workforce to do more within tight SLA frameworks and to do it right.

Lauren Bielski in CIO points out quite accurately that BPM in BPO makes digital what used to be flow charts scribbled on white boards or sketched out on notepads.  This method allows subordinate processes to be more easily taken over by contracted outsiders in jobs such as loan processing, application support, or claims processing.

Business Process Management in this scenario can rapidly define, modify and deploy processes cost effectively while at the same time providing for continuous monitoring of performance and projection of resource requirements.

If we’re talking specifics, a robust Queue Management system designed to accelerate productivity with its dynamic queue allocation is integral to BPM for BPO. Common task dispatch patters such as FIFO, LIFO and round robin are well supported as are custom dispatch patterns, automatic, semi-automatic and manual modes of task dispatch.  BPM can differentiate in this one process that makes or break a BPO operation – project delivery.

Long term fixed priced BPO contracts in the backdrop of escalating operational costs have long been the bane of the BPO industry. However, the sector has shown potential to be profitable. Now with more and more BPOs focusing on business transformation with BPM software, maybe it can?

BPM framework for BPO