A Comprehensive View of Business Management
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Business Process Management, which is abbreviated as BPM, is a sequential view of making the goals of an organization more effective and beneficial. It is also defined as the ability to adapt to the fluctuating business environment for better efficiency. In contrast, business process reengineering, also known as business processes redesign and shortened to BPR, is viewed as the overall process of analyzing the workflows in an organizational setup. BPR also comprises the modeling of the workflows and processes involved. It includes a series of logically linked activities performed to gain a desired goal. From the foregoing definitions it is clear that BMP emphasizes efficiency, while BPR deals directly with the analysis of the above to achieve better performance.
The notable principles of BPM include, among others, the following: observing the business from the outside dimension; integration of business strategy in line with the firm’s business process; articulation of the strategy to bring inspiration to the workers and staff; designing the process of business to be goal-oriented (specific goals); making sure that the design of the organization meets the execution of the strategic processes; assigning the appropriate technology to enable the achievement of the business process; evaluating the performance of the business process; sustenance of focus and its alignment.
While implementing BPM principles, managers, organizations and staff should take into consideration the role played by clients/customers and suppliers in evaluating the efficiency of the business. Also, the demands of the staff must be considered to achieve success. The organizational management team must ensure that the strategy adopted by the business is in agreement with the business process involved to avoid conflict with customer satisfaction. The business strategy ought to be made apparent to the staff, thus giving the motivation to achieve it. It also involves clearly outlining the objectives of the business and using technology to boost the performance of the business, employing the use of newer research methodologies to speed up success, ensuring that the goal of the business remains viable to the continuity of the business, remaining focused in the business process will finally result in success story for the business, meaning profits and gains. The above principles that apply in BPM also apply in BPR.
It is important to point out that technology and customer satisfaction play a pivotal role in both processes. Technology is the driver of innovation; hence a company’s failure to embrace it automatically leads to losses. In re-designing their business companies need to use technology to bring in new systems of work. While developing a redesign of a business, customer satisfaction should be analyzed, too.
Advantages of BPM and BPR
BPM and BPR are associated with numerous benefits for companies that properly implement them. Some of the advantages accruing from BPR include: sustained increase in effectiveness; cost reduction; organizational growth; improvement of organizational approach. As far as BPR is concerned, employee idle time is reduced, and they do their work in a timely manner. Being aware of their responsibilities makes employees even better managers of their time. All these factors will eventually result in better quality work and effectiveness of the business process. Cost reduction is achievable provided there is proper management. Since proper management leads to high-quality products, risks are eliminated and costs are, therefore, saved. As delays in time management are minimized in BPR, only significant work is done by employees, thus redefining their jobs and resulting in improved motivation.
BPR has created a better atmosphere for employees. Since management is constantly change-oriented, it eliminates the former autocratic leadership style, which imposed strict regulations on workers. Now, it brings freedom and enables employees to do their work comfortably, thus achieving great success. If BPR is well-implemented, the outcome is a good business with positive growth in all sectors. Invention of new business strategies is also an indication of good management. All these are the advantages of using change management.
BPM is advantageous because it makes the business more transparent. This is done by identifying delays and finding ways to solve them. BPM also helps in data centralization, since data is stored in specific places and can easily be traced when required. Another benefit of BPM is that it aids in process refinement. The advantages of BPM include: rapid results; improved efficiency due to the use of technology; sufficient time for employees; error reduction owing to good management.
BPM has extensively been used in AuraPortal Middle East. They have used BPM due to its advantages to expand their services to Cairo, Egypt. AuroPortal targets Midlle East countries and has an objective of using BPM to reach many Middle East and Arab nations.
Another place where the concept of BPM is widely used is in the Bizagi Process Modeler, a freeware application that uses BPM to process documents. Other examples include Bizagi BPM Suite.
Disadvantages of BPR and BPM
Despite their benefits, overriding these two projects can also entail certain weaknesses. The demerits may include the following: BPM tools are expensive due to high cost involved in their use; to man and operate some of the BPM tools, companies require skilled personnel; there is little or no evidence in support of BPM use; its performance may be brought down in periods of rapid change due to discouragement of workers; too much work makes workers lose morale; it is adversely affected by technological breakdowns due to heavy reliance on technological advancement. These are some of the discussed and known demerits of BPM, which also apply to BPR (White. JB,1996).
Critical Success Factors of BMP and BPR
BPR proponents have come up with the following success factors in achieving change management: commitment of the overall organization; composition of the BPR structure; analysis of business requirements; sufficient technology and infrastructure; proper and effective management of change; continuous maintenance and improvement of projects. For a business to succeed, skilled personnel, technology, and job responsibilities are required. Selecting from a wide range of knowledge and departments with varied experiences will lead to success in management. The makeup of the team of management plays a key role in determining decisions of the management and making of recommendations. It, therefore, requires very competent and devoted people with the right managerial mindset to drive the business.
The material requirements of the business are valuable in determining its success. This must be analyzed and properly budgeted to achieve success. Factors which are directly linked to success, such as infrastructure, must also be considered in evaluation of BPR and BPM. Proper network of roads, good communication and technology are the prime contributors to management success. They also determine how fast the goods of the firm reach the market. For the success to be a reality, the management is also required to put in place mechanisms of continuity of the process for continuous improvement (Juma, 2000).
Challenges in the Implementation of BPM and BPR
The lack of success stories is a major contributor to the failure of a business. It poses the biggest challenges to the implementation of the projects. Consequently, lack of a committed managerial team, inadequate technology and inconsistency in the evaluation brings failure, too. These must there be constantly checked to curb shortfalls. Apart from success stories, there are also failure stories that must be kept in mind to prevent the loss of gains achieved. Some of the identified failures include low performance of an organization caused by its ineffectiveness. BPR ignores the general public and status quo, which consequently may lead to a negative response from the latter, thus making it difficult for restructuring to be effective in cases where the management only implements what they think is good. BPR has no interest in focusing on the improvement of the organization, and this may hazardously affect the organization.
Importance of Change Management in the Success of BPM and BPR
Managing change is good for achievements of business management for it helps eliminate the fear factor and fosters confidence in the staff. Change management is, therefore, monitored critically before beginning BPM programs to curb the menace. A good change management team, therefore, is important to put in place.
Change should be properly managed to ensure that customers are taught on the new technology in order for them to remain loyal to the company. The change team formulating the strategies should also have a senior executive with leadership qualities necessary for implementing the change. For this reason BPR is sometimes referred to as change management.
The Role of Human Resource in BPM and BPR
The human resource department is needed to manage the employees and assess the requirements needed for recruiting new employees with the right skills. The human resource department caters for the welfare of the employee community. This is a team of experts that know where to find the right people to handle different tasks. They are responsible for carrying out interviews and discussing remuneration rates. To manage the changes in achieving the set goals, the management needs to constantly provide incentives, which is done by the department of human resources in performance appraisal (Taylor, 1911).
Process automation is a business strategy that involves cost-cutting by automating processes. It actually eliminates some of the human labor and adopts machinery automation. It consists of reforming labor resources and applying software. It comprises four main techniques, such as extension of IT software in existence, purchasing a tool known as BPA tool, purchasing BPM with a BPA tool and automation of BPM together with BPA.
Automation saves human resource and labor involvement, but it denies people employment, since they actually perform the same work that somebody else would have been employed to do.
To achieve success, BPM and BPR have indeed proved worth of investing. It is due to their undisputed advantages that they are important in management. If companies use them in their setup, the benefits will indeed pay for the ventures.