Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Tap into SharePoint potential with BPM software

With more than 3 million users worldwide, SharePoint is Microsoft’s fastest growing technology of all time.  With very little learning curve, flexibility in organizing information, easy search and retrieval of valuable information and several other benefits, more and more enterprises now prefer to invest in suites that combine portals, content management and collaboration solutions. Many CIOs will tell you that SharePoint is a critical component of their technology portfolio.

But SharePoint’s somewhat unplanned growth in the last 2 years has led to problems such as insufficient workflow processes, disorganized content and lack of cohesive site creation strategy. Although the Microsoft SharePoint 2010 stack includes sites, communities, content, search, insights and composites, one of its established uses is undoubtedly for improving process management functionality.

Almost every good BPM Software Suite in the market today integrates with Microsoft SharePoint.  If you are already utilizing Microsoft SharePoint for document management and enterprise content management, then BPM is something you will eventually want to consider to add advanced workflow capabilities. 
Of the myriad business benefits of extending BPM to SharePoint, these are key:
  • Business user empowerment: enhanced collaboration, allowing business managers to build enterprise wide workflows for processing documents, custom lists and content types in SharePoint.
  • Stronger processes: Centralized process management and analysis. Highly visible processes and promotes consistent practice of standards thus making processes reliable, repeatable and manageable.
  • Improved productivity: Manage enterprise wide content and automate and streamline business processes for agile decision making
  • Rapid ROI: Efficient processes with reduced processing costs and reduced IT investments

A product like Invensys Skelta’s SharePoint Accelerator extends advanced BPM & workflow software advantage to Microsoft SharePoint 2010 for maximum utilization and broader adoption of native SharePoint capabilities. It makes sense for Enterprises to leverage existing SharePoint investments with the added BPM and workflow functionality – code free workflow design, extensibility of all BPM functionality such as queues, KPIs, dashboards, custom reports, built in SharePoint activities and wizards within workflows et al … to bring in the entire goodie bag – Process optimization, Quicker time to market, Operational efficiency across the board and of course better bottom lines.
Perhaps the best value addition BPM software brings to SharePoint is generating workflows from within SharePoint using built in SharePoint wizards and activities. Adds meaning to ‘Collaboration’ - both with dispersed knowledge workers and existing systems that integrate with SharePoint.
As an integrated platform, BPM software with SharePoint also lends itself to business application development for key areas of business.
By extending security and access rights management to documents in SharePoint, transparent, traceable processes and enhanced accountability can be enabled across the Enterprise.
In our next post, we discuss how Collaboration can be leveraged across the Enterprise value chain using BPM and workflow software with SharePoint.