Why EBPA is a new way to visualize and manage the business in an age characterized by rapid change, including digital transformation.
Enterprise business process analysis (EBPA) is more than just another new enterprise software acronym. It is a new way to visualize and manage the business in an age characterized by rapid change, including digital transformation. EBPA is essentially an approach to business process improvement based on business modeling or analytics.
IFS’s approach to this discipline focuses on operational intelligence (OI), a management approach with military origins. It was conceived by Col. John Boyd, who did an analysis to determine why a disproportionate number of US warplanes were shot down during the Vietnam War, despite the technical superiority of US jets. His resulting OODA approach helps decision-makers from the cockpit to the board room progress more rapidly through the stages of observation, orientation, decision and action. This has obvious implications for executives working to outmaneuver their competitors in a rapidly changing business landscape.
Part of the IFS EOI offering, the BizmapTM technology is a direct expression of early analyst conceptions of enterprise business process analysis (EBPA).
Analysts like Gartner have traditionally seen OI as being akin to corporate performance management (CPM), which they define as “the methodologies, metrics, processes and systems used to monitor and manage the business performance of an enterprise. Applications that enable CPM translate strategically focused information to operational plans and send aggregated results. These applications are also integrated into many elements of the planning and control cycle, or they address BAM or customer relationship optimization needs.”
Key functional areas that software buyers should consider
Today, Gartner is including OI in the category of EBPA, and IFS is one of a select few software vendors highlighted in Gartner’s Market Guide for Enterprise Business Process Analysis (EBPA).
The report not only lists vendors in the space but outlines key functional areas that software buyers should consider during a selection cycle. Gartner defines EBPA as “the discipline of business and process modeling aimed at transforming and improving business performance, with an emphasis on cross-viewpoint, cross-function analysis, and strategic and operational decision support.”
They outline four common business cases for EBPA, including:
- Supporting digital transformation by linking strategy to execution
- Improving processes by process modeling and analysis
- Assessing the impact of change by connecting process models with enterprise architecture
- Modeling and preparing business processes for automation
I personally think Gartner performs a great service with this report by bringing coherent structure to what is an evolving enterprise software discipline. It is also worth noting that IFS Enterprise Operational Intelligence (EOI) has documented strengths in three of the four use cases Gartner outlines for this technology. To be honest, we are not really an exceptional enterprise architecture tool but are strong with linking strategy to execution, connecting process models with the enterprise architecture and business modeling. We are also pleased to see Gartner suggesting software buyers look closely at specific functional competencies for each business case, and that those functional competencies conform well to our own approach with IFS EOI.
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