Seven deadly sins of BPM — 5) Failing to keep it up to date

5. Failing to keep it up to date

The following is a continuation of Seven deadly sins of BPM — 4) Making it hard to find

Thou shalt assign an owner and that owner shall be accountable.

For any information to be trustworthy, someone who can authorize its initial use and any subsequent changes must own it. Assigning ownership to process is the key to making sure that the people accountable for the success of a process have the proper authority to approve and change what they own. While it seems straightforward, this capability is all too often missing from BPM applications. Rather than centralized process data and its context, process data is stored in files on the network or someone’s hard drive. And don’t tell me SharePoint solves the problem, because it doesn’t truly centralize the data itself, just the documents that contain the data.

Ownership

Once ownership is assigned, there must to be a systematic way for people to suggest changes, and for that owner to circulate changes for broader review and to ultimately approve or reject those suggestions. If this capability is lacking, you’re going to have a hard time engaging your workforce in continuous improvement, and the tendency will be for content review to become a sporadic and inconsistent effort.

Litmus test

I’m often asked about the strengths and weaknesses of various BPM solutions. I have a simple litmus test for whether a solution ‘works’…can the owner of a process manage the look and feel of what they own and can that owner evaluate and act on any changes that come along? If an ‘expert’ is required for these activites, the system isn’t able to be deployed to and managed by the people who matter…those who own and perform process. Most managers and works are more than capable of owning the expression and governance of what they do.

Providing access to out of date information will quickly discredit your process repository, causing users to defect to the old ways of getting work done.

Up next: Seven deadly sins of BPM — Making it hard to Understand

Advertisements

Categories: The 7 Deadly Sins, Workplace Reality

Author:Chris Taylor

Reimagining the way work is done through big data, analytics, and event processing. There's no end to what we can change and improve. I wear myself out...

Subscribe to the blog

Subscribe and receive an email when new articles are published

4 Comments on “Seven deadly sins of BPM — 5) Failing to keep it up to date”

  1. November 17, 2011 at 2:05 am #

    I can feel these pains, several years later.
    Doesn’t using group aliases help in the absence of a portal or non-BPM responsibility?
    Even worse, when your BPM doesn’t include this vital information. 🙂

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Seven deadly sins of BPM — 4) Making it hard to find | BPM For Real - November 15, 2011

    […] BPM For Real A site about the realities of business process management Skip to content HomeAbout BPM for RealLatest posts ← What I learned at the APQC Conference Seven deadly sins of BPM — 5) Failing to keep it up to date → […]

  2. Seven deadly sins of BPM — 6) Making it hard to understand | BPM For Real - November 16, 2011

    […] BPM For Real A site about the realities of business process management Skip to content HomeAbout BPM for RealLatest posts ← Seven deadly sins of BPM — 5) Failing to keep it up to date […]

  3. BPM Quotes of the week « Adam Deane - November 20, 2011

    […] BPM and Accountability – Chris Taylor Assigning ownership to process is the key to making sure that the people […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: