How is your relationship with your business data? As a C-Level Executive or even a manager involved in developing and implementing your data management strategy, that's a crucial question. For most people, the answer lies somewhere between "it’s a mess" and "I'm not sure."
Having a solid base of information is vital to the success of your company. Everyone from the CEO to the lowest intern is counting on having the correct information at the right time to perform their business processes and make critical, strategic decisions that affect the future of the company.
All too often, businesses are still operating without a single foundational source of data that drives all of their business activities. At its core, the electronic business process is about entering work data at each point in your process and transforming it into useful information for the next person to do their job. In the end, you should have a library of information that is useful for process control, process refinement, and even strategic decision making.
If you don't have a single source of business process, you're probably facing all sorts of inefficiencies and even potential security risks. These problems are easy to resolve by managing all of your organization's processes within a single source of business process.
To help you figure out if you are suffering from problems related to not having a single source of business process, we have created this list of the top 5 signs that you need a single source of business process.
1. Experiencing Difficulty Reporting on the Big Picture
Difficulty in reporting on the big picture of the business is a massive concern for the executives responsible for overseeing your organization's strategic growth. They need to know what's happening, where, and when. They need to see all of the information and metrics collected from processes in every business area to understand opportunities for improvement and problems they need to resolve.
If developing easy-to-understand visual reports with information from every business area is a struggle, that's a massive sign that you need to stop pulling data from all sorts of disparate systems and develop a single source of business process using Solutions Business Manager: a Modern Enterprise Business Process Engine.
2. Inability to Capture the Right Data
Are you struggling to capture the data metrics that your business needs you to capture? Every organization has a different set of data metrics and KPIs based on its unique need. This inability to capture the correct data signifies that you need a single source of business process.
Using spreadsheets to keep track of data does nothing to force other people involved in the data collection to track the right metrics or even track metrics at all because there are no required fields in spreadsheets. Additionally, business systems that produce reports may not report on the metrics you need to capture for your business. Trying to piece together an operational report manually can be frustrating as well as error-prone and still not allow you to fully articulate critical business data according to your organization's needs.
3. Inconsistent Process Execution
Inconsistent processes execution is perhaps the most obvious sign that you need a single source of business process. Thats when you have a process that is completed by multiple teams, and nobody is doing the same process the same way.
It's amazing how common this problem is. When consulting on business processes, we almost always discover inconsistencies because there is no single source of process, even within one department. Introducing process variation will always harm the bottom line because your operations will never be as lean as possible. Even if that's not a concern, although it should be, you will never collect any meaningful process control data because everyone is performing the process differently, so any comparisons you make are like comparing apples and oranges.
4. Implementing or Modifying a Data Warehouse System
If you have a data warehousing system, then you already understand the value of keeping your data in one place. The difference between a data warehouse and a single source of business process is that a data warehouse is only for storing data and cannot process the data without connecting business systems to input data and different business systems for reporting on that data.
If you have to change your data warehouse configuration often, this is a sign that you need a tool to work, store data, and build reports all in one place. You might recognize this concept as a single source of business process.
5. Maintaining Your Process in an ERP System Isn't Practical
One of the most common questions that we hear is, "Why don't we just build that in SAP?" The answer is not everyone has access to SAP. Now imagine the cost of maintaining multiple processes within your ERP system. When you consider the usual price of an ERP license for each person you need to work on your process, maintaining one single process can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars annually, which still doesn't resolve the other issues mentioned above.
If you're concluding that running all of your processes within your ERP system isn't practical, then this is a sign you need a single source of business process.
Enterprise business is only becoming more automated and more integrated. The reality is that your ability to simplify your application infrastructure without losing power and flexibility to get work done in the way your organization needs to get work done is a huge competitive advantage for your organization. Having a rock-solid centralized source of data is crucial for monitoring the health of your organization. Add to that the ability to do work and run custom reports within the system that you use for information, and you have a single source of business process.
Being a current Solutions Business Manager customer experiencing any of these signs is a strong indicator that you're not receiving the value you could be from your SBM installation. If this describes you, then be sure to check out the resource Benefits of Using SBM as Your Single Source of Business Process.