BPM: From back office to front office
Jay Dhar 120000G908 firstname.lastname@example.org | | Tags:  banking mobile bpm business_process_manageme... mobile_apps customer_engagement
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Two weeks ago, I received my federal tax return check from the IRS, and that brought a BIG smile to my face. I quickly used my bank’s iOS app to deposit the check, without making a trip to the bank. Through the app, I was notified that I would have portion of the check amount available immediately and rest would be available once the check was verified. Fair enough!
The next morning, I got a notification that the funds were available in my account. How cool is that?! But wait…was this the AHA moment for me as a customer and a BPM practitioner? Even though I had just used this service for the first time, I would now expect this service from any bank. But you know what…as a preferred customer and someone who regularly use this bank’s service; I would like to be provided with more flexibility and quality of service
The business process behind the check deposit has existed for decades, and was historically a back office job. However, in the recent years, the interaction pattern between the back office and the front office has changed. As I wrote about in a previous blog post, any process that has customer touch points now needs more attention, as customer expectations have changed.
Process Excellence Network contributor Craig Reed talks about how there has been a major evolution in business processes between the industrial age and today. Starting in the 1900s, there was an era of process standardization that continued until 1980s. After that, there was a wave of process re-engineering starting with methodologies like Six Sixma and Total Quality Management. This era focused on making efficiency gains, which mostly resulted in improvement in bottom line savings. In the recent years, disruption has happened in almost every industry with mobile, social, cloud and big data, so the only way to remain competitive has been to innovate once again.
Today, we are seeing a growing trend around redesigning business processes for customer convenience and simplicity to drive business growth. Our customers are beginning to use BPM not just to streamline their back-office processes, but also to improve their customer-facing processes. In a recent survey, Forrester found that 30% of respondents expect to see a significant increase in demand for BPM to extend critical business processes out to mobile, and another 29% expect a significant increase in using BPM to improve customer-facing business processes. In a recent brief conversation with Clay Richardson from Forrester during IBM IMPACT 2014, both of the above use cases represent key drivers for process differentiation in the Age of the Customer.
As companies are transforming their processes from back office to front office, we see the following common themes across their customers' expectations:
Here are some more good reads about why back office business processes are being disrupted today, and how you can create more instant, seamless and insightful front office interactions with your customers: