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Applying Business Processes to the IT Organization

10/17/2013 by: The SunView Team

Business process management, BPM, Change Management

Business process management is emerging as a key trend in many sectors. Processes represent the vital tasks that help an organization function efficiently. By organizing, standardizing and optimizing business processes, companies are able to maximize revenues by improving business efficiency. While many businesses have embraced this strategy for day-to-day operations within their IT organizations, others have not. Applying business processes to IT departments can deliver major operational and fiscal benefits.

Applying process management to IT operations
Business process management principles center around the concept of maximizing efficiency by clearly defining what each worker needs to do to move a project forward. When applied to an aspect of a company, BPM involves analyzing operations, identifying which processes are being completed, documenting how they are accomplished and identifying ways to streamline those processes to develop more effective operations.

In theory, this strategy is designed to make a company more lean in nature by improving transparency, collaboration and overarching management principles. There are times, however, when a business process strategy can also become problematic if it is so rigid that an organization is unable to adjust based on changing dynamics. Many companies overcome this issue by treating process management as an ongoing cycle of evaluation, documentation and operations that ensure corporate functionality is fine tuned at all times.

Applying this functionality to the IT segment can prove incredibly difficult as tasks like change management, incident resolution and end-user support involve a complex web of processes that are difficult to effectively map and define. However, organizations that are able to pin down core processes driving IT management tasks can add a layer of organization and optimization to the broad IT department and create major efficiency gains. Capitalizing on these benefits, however, depends on introducing some measure of automation.

Using automation to enhance business processes in IT
An IT service desk that includes elements of automation for change management and incident resolution can go a long way toward helping companies take full advantage of process management strategies. One of the great advantages of documenting processes is that it lets an organization identify inefficiencies. If repeatable operations are being completed regularly by IT staff, that burden can be alleviated by using automation solutions to handle those processes. The end result is a much more agile, flexible and efficient IT operation because the number of processes being handled has been minimized and the broad operational architecture has been optimized.