What Happens When AI Meets BPM?
More work gets done – faster! Here’s how…
Let’s Start with Definitions
The term “process” refers to the steps, or linked activities, that must happen to complete a specific task. Some processes -- core business processes -- are directly related to your most important organizational value. They might include product design and delivery, customer support, supply chain management, business, and support processes. These core processes involve most your organization’s workforce and produce value for customers, stockholders and other stakeholders. BPM, or Business Process Management helps you do a better job.
Other processes, while equally necessary, do not directly impact customer, stakeholder and stockholder value. Because their impact is not direct, these processes are often overlooked when automation, artificial intelligence and process management efforts are undertaken.
In fact, these processes are generally relegated to the back-office. Back-office processes include activities like Human Resources Management, Accounts Payable, Accounts Receivable, Payroll Management, Data Entry and the like. Frequently, they are lumped into the broader category of “Operating Expense,” and appear as a single entry on the balance sheet. If reasonable profits are maintained, customers, stockholders and stakeholders remain satisfied and the operating expense is rarely questioned. But…
Lower Operating Expense Equals Higher Profits
Whatever core product or service you offer, you probably strive toward running a “lean” business. You minimize waste, employ good production/service standards and keep your eye on your staff’s productivity. You try to maintain an even workload and often work from the perspective of a client.
You’ve automated many of your customer-facing, front-end operations with digital solutions. Good for you!
BUT, many back-office processes still rely on people and paper. This high degree of manual processing is costly and slow, and it can lead to inconsistent results and a high error rate.
The combination of AI and BPM can bring the same “lean” business philosophy into your back-office that you currently have in your customer-facing and production areas.
Why Bring AI and BPM Leanness into the Back-Office?
Remember how we talked at the beginning of this article about producing value for customers, stockholders and other stakeholders? Reducing back-office Operating Expense and increasing efficiency has a positive effect on the bottom line. A better bottom-line means more value for customers, stockholders and stakeholders. Even small businesses benefit!
Most back-office operations are rules-based. By automating the rules and combining with electronic record keeping you can reduce the time people spend on unnecessary tasks or steps. Errors are lessened or eliminated. Back-office employees become more productive.
Artificial Intelligence and Digital Processes complement human input and have a major impact on the way organizations work. To learn more, check out this page of ideas for putting AI and Digital Processes into your Back-Office Business Processes, or just contact us.