While business process management is an excellent way for you to keep your business organized and running efficiently, there are problems that you may encounter along the way. It’s important to recognize what can occur so you can create an environment that prevents them from happening. Here a few general problems you may encounter and a few possible ways to counter them:
Business Process Management does not Solve the Problem
Remember, Business Process Management is not the solution but rather a tool to assist in solving problems such as an employee forgetting to follow-up with a client after a product or service has been delivered. Use BPM as the system that it was meant to be. If the employee uses the system and follows each step every time, he should get accustomed to the system and commit fewer errors, such as not following up with a client.
Employees don’t Buy into the System
You may add new employees to your company who think the BPM system is absurd or simply don’t agree with it. Obviously, you’re not going to fire them and find other employees but rather talk to them about the system and figure out how they think you can improve it. You may not implement all the changes they suggest but it shows you will consider their opinion.
Under Stress, Employees Ignore/Forget the Processes
You may see employees under stress because they’re trying to meet a deadline for you or for someone else and they forget a step in the process. This can be difficult if you’re work environment requires you to work under strict deadlines but one solution may be to plan more efficiently and give your employees more time to complete their projects. If you can’t negotiate with the clients on extending the deadlines, you may want to try to communicate with your employees and let them adjust their schedule to be able to complete the project in a timely manner without having to stress and forget steps.
Lack of Assigned Responsibility
This problem occurs when the employees see the problem or task assigned to the system rather than him or herself. They think, “It’s the system, not me, that isn’t working. The system is faulty and needs to be fixed.” This can be the case, of course, but may not be. If the system has a previous history of success, then you’ll know the error is most likely human rather than the process. You should ensure that your system assigns responsibility to individual people, so they know if something goes wrong they will be held accountable.
There are several other problems not mentioned here that you may run into with business process management in your business. The best thing to do is to recognize these as common problems so that you figure out how you’re going to prevent them from happening or handle them when they occur.
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Great article. I’d like to add a few reasons to your list, if I may.
Business Processes do not exist in a form that the employees can access – Often business owners will try to keep the processes for accomplishing tasks inside of their heads. Feeling that the employees will just ask them how to perform tasks and somehow remember these processes, that have taken the business owner time (sometimes years) to learn. Process should be stored in a digital and decentralized state.
Training – After the processes have been developed they should be a part of any employee training that follows, in the order. Training should be developed AFTER processes. Some business owners train employees first and then introduce them to processes second. While it can work this way, it is much more effective to give an employee an understanding of your companies goals, objectives, and the mission of the company all of which should be included in processes, first. This way the employee understand why they are being trained to do something.