Doing the Right Things the Right Way: Mind the Gap
Many business processes are about doing things the right way. There is not always the same emphasis on doing the right things. Referring to a popular theme in this day and age, there may be a near optimal process in place to turn a mortgage application into a transaction, but should the mortgage have been approved in the first place? What’s the probability of default, what is the potential loss to the company? Similarly, all the sales fulfillment processes may be running full throttle, but are the right products being offered? Those products or services that, in the end, will maximize the lifetime value for that customer? Should a different product have been proposed, a different price, a different incentive?
Where process without intelligence may cause a company to make bad decisions very fast and efficiently, intelligence without process has its own challenges. It’s common, for instance, to see customers accept an offer (i.e. the right offer is being made) only to discover that at the end of the day the transaction was never closed. In such cases, the necessary fulfillment processes have not been linked to the offers, are not automated, or are broken. That leaves an expensive gap between the right decisions and follow-up actions. Perhaps some data critical for fulfillment was never collected, perhaps stock levels or compliance were not checked while making the offer, perhaps a manual step is holding up the process indefinitely. In such cases, the company has the means to decide on the right thing to do, but fails to execute on it in the right way.
The Holy Grail, of course, is for analytics and decisioning to figure out what to do, and for BPM to efficiently execute on it. An end-to-end unified approach with no opportunity for revenues to fall in the gap.