Across almost every industry, project teams are combining Agile Development methodology and Business Process Management (BPM) into a hybrid – Agile BPM – that gives them the benefits of both techniques.
Agile Development is known for creating a flexible planning and creation process that connects cross-functional teams to generate solutions in iterations and increments. BPM also helps make organizations more flexible and responsive to the demands of the market by making process workflow more efficient and effective.
What Makes Agile BPM Different?
There is much more than just the focus on flexibility that makes Agile BPM stand apart from other quality improvement methodologies and hybrids.
Agile BPM is unique in several aspects and includes:
- Discovery Workshops – These events bring together business and technology concerns in the organization and build on a mutual commitment toward shared goals. Attendees work together to identify problems and find solutions. Outcomes of discovery workshops include critical project elements such as: roadmaps, timelines, documented solutions and a list of next steps.
- Multiple Iterations – Quality experts expect that early versions of an improved process will be rough and raw, but they also know that early iterations will expose flaws in the process that would otherwise remain unseen. Agile BPM is designed to take as many laps around the track as needed by producing numerous versions of a process before crossing the finish line.
- Managing Culture – Agile BPM brings business operations and the IT department together. These two organizations have very different cultures. Savvy quality experts know how to apply agile BPM to obtain the maximum benefit for the company without alienating those who participate in the process.
Inherent Trends That Help Promote Agile BPM
Two significant things allow Agile BPM to take on a life of its own and guarantee its place in the future of quality improvement.
- Knowledgeable Workers – Employees’ value is measured by what they know. These knowledge assets are fluid and flexible and require business processes that can adapt to rapid advancements in knowledge.
- Collaboration – Managers have learned that employees who share ideas, communicate openly and work together are more creative and productive. This emphasis on collaboration is ideally suited to Agile BPM.
Agile BPM’s Effect on Business
Agile BPM continues to change the business landscape in several important ways as more organizations are embracing it.
- No More Silos – Seamless and transparent communication between all departments is the first requirement for Agile BPM. Once this pattern of open communication is established and maintained it helps these departments continue to collaborate on different types of projects.
- Shorter Development Time – Companies that are adept at using Agile BPM respond rapidly to a changing marketplace. They can tackle more improvements and implement them more quickly.
- Bigger Competitive Advantage – Agile BPM converts the organizations that use it into optimal performers because they can solve problems creatively and adapt to new markets quickly. This flexibility helps them stay ahead of the competition.
Companies that depend on efficient and effective processes that can be quickly adapted to changing markets should seriously consider training and certification for Agile BPM.