Despite rumours of its demise, or at the very least it’s description as a doddery old man who’s gotten lost after accidentally wandering out of the old folks home, there might be life in the old BPM dog yet. Like the movie Cocoon where a bunch of old folks are rejuvenated by alien visitors, the cloud has the potential to regenerate BPM.
The cloud is an opportunity to transform the business case for BPM and process improvement. Today many BPM applications are largely the preserve of large and multinational enterprises. BPM SaaS/PaaS presents the opportunity to extend the market reach of BPM applications into the SME market. Low start off costs and the ability to only pay for what you need with the reassurance of elasticity and scalability on demand has the potential to transform the business case for BPM for many organizations. The availability of on demand, pre-built process solutions delivered via cloud based BPM platforms takes this a step further giving SMEs the opportunity access to process solutions and industry best practice that they would have been unable to develop in house.
BPM in the cloud creates a business process outsourcing (BPO) opportunity for organizations with a specific area of process expertise. Organisations with specific domain expertise in for example financial services, healthcare or legal services can now not only deploy cloud based process solutions within their own enterprises but rapidly enter the BPO market and resell their intellectual property (IP) through the development of BPaaS (Business Process as a Service) process applications.
Deployment of business process solutions is de-risked through the ability to carry out rapid prototyping and testing of BPM solutions in the cloud. For organizations still developing their cloud strategy business process solutions can be incubated in the cloud before bringing on premise.
Most BPM vendors offer applications across a variety of mobile devices and form factors. Cloud computing extends the mobile capabilities of BPM suites through access to cloud based storage and processing and delivers process access via web browsers on any device, anywhere.
While it’s been slow to develop the cloud is a major opportunity for BPM. BPM SaaS/PaaS is an opportunity to strip away, the sometimes self-inflicted, barriers to entry for process improvement, to stimulate much broader adoption of BPM technologies and to engage with a whole new audience.