Tuesday, July 12, 2011

BPM Best Practices for the Financial Industry

In our current economic environment, the financial industry is challenged today by two very significant needs to improve efficiency and enhance service. I spoke about these business needs last year at an event hosted by Prolifics and IBM, and they couldn’t be more significant today. To satisfy these requirements, organizations are tasked with driving down costs by consolidating duplicated and siloed systems into well-defined, reusable services and managing customer service levels with greater flexibility.

This industry has a collection of 'habits,' or best practices, that have a powerful effect on business performance in these critical areas. Over time, we have captured the best practices that have proven to be successful with process management programs within the financial industry. At this seminar, we reviewed 11 specific practices that help financial services organizations experience success with projects/delivery, team competency and leveraging Business Process Management (BPM) across the enterprise.

I’d like to share some of these ‘habits’ with you now:

Make BPM about Productivity and Visibility
  • Metrics, KPIs and SLAs should be part of the DEFINE phase
  • Don’t scope out metrics
  • Remember: visibility is critical to improvement

Never “One and Done”
  • Iterative Approach: continuous process improvement
  • Additional phases or versions will always happen: The value in BPM is that you can get your first version out there quickly, but the real opportunity here is really in version 2, 3 and 4 where you are bringing entirely new levels of capability and sophistication of efficiency of effectiveness to your organization

Don’t Skip Process Analysis
  • Processes are done by many different parties! Process analysis helps you understand: What does the end-to-end look like? What data is needed at different points? What is the velocity that we need in this process? How quickly do we need turnaround time?
  • Process analysis sets apart traditional applications development from building process applications
Build a Complete Team
  • Have the right mix of resources on the team with a broad set of skill sets
  • Java (.NET) developers aren’t all you need

Establish the Owners
  • A requirement for succeeding with BPM is that processes must be business-owned. You need people from the business to engage and determine what the process priorities are.
  • They key benefit to this iterative approach is that you can make tradeoffs and changes to adapt to changing business conditions and requirements. A level of business engagement will ensure that the right decisions are being made.

In addition, financial institutions face a highly demanding environment requiring exceeding agility. The seminar focused on how customers can reap the benefits of the business rule approach to operational decision making in the areas of payments, credit and lending, risk management and customer care for financial institutions. With business rules, key decisions in your financial processes can be changed in minutes to days rather than months - bringing new levels of efficiency to day-to-day operations.

To read more about these 11 Habits for highly successful BPM programs and the benefits of a business rules management system, please take a look at this presentation. For any questions about these topics or Prolifics’ solutions for the financial industry, please email solutions@prolifics.com.

Don Rivera is a Client Executive with Prolifics managing the NY & NJ Metro territory. Don is a certified IBM WebSphere Solution Sales Professional working with SMB and Enterprise accounts to determine how to leverage IBM software technology to meet their critical business objectives. He brings over 16 years of experience working in the information technology industry in various system engineering, sales and business development roles with companies such as Computer Sciences Corporation, Level 3 Communications and BBN Technologies.