Business Process Optimisation (BPO) is undoubtedly one of the most important activities in any business of any size. We are in a world where we are continually wanting to do more with what we have, and if our businesses aren’t running as efficient as what they could be, we are creating an opportunity cost, and sacrificing potential growth.
That being said, BPO is not an initiative that can be undertaken at a whim. Too often organisations make some fatal mistakes which leads to the project never making it off the ground, and therefore wasting valuable company resources.
Therefore, we have come up with these top 5 tips to ensure your BPO project gets off the ground running.
1. Involve the Stakeholders involved in the process
The importance of involving both internal and external stakeholders cannot be understated… especially if you don’t already have the analytics and metrics in place. This is the only way that you’re going to be able to understand holistically what is going on in your processes, and what the best approach to enhance them is. This is due to the fact that everyone has a different perspective on what is going on, and no single point of view, or set of data, will give you the contextual information you need.
Surveys and focus groups are great tools to utilise to gain insights into large samples of stakeholders involved in your processes. For example, customer facing processes where you need to understand the customer experience.
2. Analyse your Current State Business Situation
It’s impossible to develop a plan for where you’re going, if you don’t know where you are. Undertaking a Current State analysis enables you to understand what is working, and where your processes are failing. Work with your stakeholders to gain a holistic picture of why particular steps in the process are either good or bad.
3. Develop your Desired State Business Situation
This seems like an obvious one, but it has to be planned through quality research. After completing your Current State Business Analysis, you will be able to easily identify the bottlenecks of your processes. Then initially talk to the people that are involved in these troubled areas, as well as Business Process Management (BPM) technology providers, to see how these areas can be optimised through procedural changes, automation, and creation of fail-safes.
4. Don’t get carried away – Always focus around a quick ROI
It’s easy to get carried away with all the possibilities when undertaking BPO; however, the hardest part of BPO is also getting your first initiative off the ground. The bigger a project gets, the longer it will take, the more resources you will need and the more expensive it will become. The priority is to focus on the areas that are causing your organisation the most pain. If it is a large process, break it up into sub-processes during your current state analysis and focus on the sub-processes that need the most attention.
BPO is a continual project. You’re not going to solve all the organisation’s problems overnight. Rather, start with something manageable to begin with, provide an ROI on that, and move onto the next. Once you have addressed the major bottlenecks, you can further enhance other areas of the business to further increase productivity.
Where possible, see what technologies you can utilise that require little configuration, but can be built upon for future BPO projects. An example of this is our FileStream in a Box – A plug and play system, already loaded with common archiving utilities, approval workflows, and digital forms.
5. Ensure you have the Analytics and Metrics to measure success
As mention above, BPO is a continual project. The analytics and metrics give you the information that you need to identify how your initiative is performing, as well as being able to identify bottlenecks as soon as they arise. All of our BPM Technologies at FileStream encompass analytics to ensure that you have the information at your fingertips to make well informed business decisions.