The need for better integration between project management and business process management

Operational effectiveness is essential for businesses to thrive in the ever changing technological and business environments. Earlier project management and business process management were thought to be two parallel processes which have much i

n common such as: scheduling, dependencies, task allocation, deliverables etc. Project management has time as an extra parameter which was not considered to be crucial in the business process management. But now a day this is no longer true. Time to market is now identified to be crucial for market leadership and business innovation. Given this one can understand the importance of the tight integration between project management and business process management for the success of the organization.

Project management is essentially dependent upon the proven techniques and their application in the different project phases whether planning, design, development, deployment etc. Each and every phase of the project management has clear end criteria. Whereas when it comes the business processes these are essentially the operations designed so as to achieve a specific goal every time. Hence these are more or less a continuous process.

Similar to projects business processes have a set of activities, with constraints, variables and dependents. Though one might consider business processes to be repetitive, if taken each instance at a time they can be considered as unique, similar to projects. The time taken for process completion has a major say in the effectiveness of the process or activity. This is because any delay in any of the steps can have a trickledown effect to the rest of the activities. Monitoring and controlling are difficult in business process management, whereas they are primary techniques used for performance measurement in project management. Hence using the same principles would ensure that one can better measure the effectiveness of the activities in the business processes.

Having similar measurement tools will make a lot of difference for the business managers and the performance. Utilizing weighted measurements for each of the business activities would help in enhancing the process utility and reducing the time for process completion. Using the workflow principles of project management as the base would help the business manager to effectively measure the business process effectiveness and help in creating an environment where innovation is valued.

Thus it is important for the business leaders to think and act like the project managers and follow the principles of project management for business process management so as to grow innovation, responsibility and time based performance. This would in turn ensure the success of the organization as a whole and resulting in better market preparedness.

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Radhika Chittoor

15 years of experience in presales and marketing. I have helped companies set up their sales & marketing teams.