Business Process Management Software – Explore the Top 10 BPM Software for 2024

bpm software

Every business deserves to become the epitome of efficiency. If this has been a difficult process, then you must look into BPM software.

Imagine this scenario:

Your organization is in the process of onboarding a supplier for the procurement of an internal requirement. You, as a part of the procurement department, have to identify the requirements and submit a purchase request, select vendors, negotiate, generate a purchase order, and get it approved. This is a long and tedious process and often leads to delays and has a lot of loopholes for inefficiencies to creep in. So what can be done here to enhance the process to efficiency?

A business process management system can do wonders for any business process. Detects errors, delays, bottlenecks, and process silos with effective streamlining with Business Process Management (BPM) software. 

Scroll down to explore more into understanding BPM software and learn how to leverage it effectively.

What is BPM Software?

Business Process Management (BPM) is a standardized management approach that helps in the streamlining of all business processes. With optimization and streamlining, the processes’ efficiency, effectiveness, ability, and reliability are enhanced. This is achieved by taking care of the designing, modeling, executing, monitoring, and improving the processes continuously. The final output is the betterment of the overall performance of the business. 

BPM software is the tool that is used in this management approach. The BPM software empowers users to have great control and visibility into the process and it boosts its efficiency with improved process analyses, faster process mapping, and digitizing.

How is this achieved? The BPM software is used for the automation of the processes.

The Business Process Management systems have the power to get an all-encompassing picture of all the processes of every department in the organization. Moreover, these systems are empowered with case management features and can be integrated with other external applications. 

Business process management (BPM) software shares numerous functionalities, but BPM software has its offerings. For instance, a BPM system and workflow management software have the potential to strategize and manage all the tasks within the processes yet, they differ in the aspect of providing a wider insight into the overall functioning of the business and BPM software tools can do it.

So what qualifies a product as BPM software:

  • Capture business processes
  • Enables the creation of rule logic
  • Offers tools and features for measuring the process execution
  • Allows the automation of business processes
  • Upholds features like form creation and offers basic interfaces in digital format
  • Allows integration with external applications for data acquisition and processing

Choosing the right BPM software is a difficult task in a market that offers multiple choices.

Categories of Business Process Management (BPM) Software

Every BPM software serves the purpose of streamlining and optimizing the business processes of an organization. These several software tools can offer the same functions but where they differ is their ability to allow the users to create separate applications along with the processes.

So, here are the two major types of Business Process Management Software:

1. Standard BPM software

With the implementation of the standard BPM software, users are empowered to have complete control over their business operations. This standard model also offers all the necessary tools that aid in the monitoring of the performance of processes, analyzing, fixing, and working towards current goals. Just like all the other software used, the BPM software does not stand in isolation.

It is important to note that the BPM software must have the integration feature to collaborate tools like Customer Relationship Management software and Enterprise Resource Planning software. This key feature would enable the employees to understand the different complex processes and accordingly optimize and automate. 

2. Digital Process Automation (DPA)

As the subset of BPM, Digital Process Automation offers products and services of the core BPM software, additionally, but also offers to exist as a standalone application.

For example, a retail business can implement digital process automation to analyze the performance of the sales representatives, looking at how they are selling the products in different regions. This can be completely achieved on the application where the sales process can be automated and streamlined.

Common Features in a BPM Software

Real-time Process Monitoring

Visibility and tracking of processes are important parameters to be checked. However, this task can take a lot of work to carry out with numerous processes across different departments. Business Process Management software has the potential to aid in the tracking of the process through visual workflow. Moreover, it allows users to test variations and make necessary changes to the process. 

Document Automation

Documents are an inevitable part of any business, hence managing them has to be done efficiently. The BPM workflow software replaces the manual job of data entry into the forms and optimizes it by auto-entry of documents like employee onboarding, supplier/vendor contracts, invoices, etc. 

Robust BPM Database

Managing data is an important aspect of any business. Therefore, it is essential to have a BPM database storage tool that would effectively sort, store, and also carry out an analysis of the data. The BPM database tool must be based on your organization’s processes, procedures, and systems. The tool has to be flexible enough to make necessary changes – add, remove, and edit data in the processes. 

Visual Workflow Modeling

With visual workflow modeling, the BPM software has to support the easy editing and designing of the process workflows. This modeling feature must allow the drag-and-drop workflow creation. 

Process Automation

Workflow automation is an important aspect when it comes to streamlining business processes. Hence, BPM software must be an automation platform that would improve the efficiency and accuracy of the process and reduce time consumption and manual labor. The features of automation will include document generation and automation, process automation, etc.

Some Common Technical Functionalities in BPM Workflow Software:

  • Process mining tools – Process mining tools are specialized in discovering, representing, and analyzing the operations that push the business process forward. 
  • Workflow engines – Workflow engines are specialized in automating the tasks in a workflow that makes up a business process.
  • Business rules engines – Business rules engines are tools using which businesses can change rules without a programmer’s help.
  • Simulation and testing tools – these types of tools are used for testing business processes’ behavior with the coding first.

Why use BPM?

It is important to understand one thing. BPM solutions are just not a one-time answer to all the problems that you face in your business. It is an iterative process that helps keep improving the processes to transform them into an efficient one. This improvement is the result of strategic planning, role delegation, clarification, analysis, and execution. Hence, implementing BPM software is not a simple task. 

If the implementation is achieved in the right manner, your business can achieve all the set goals, it gets easy to respond to the market trends and create a long-lasting impression in the industry. BPMInstitute.org, the largest community of BPM professionals discusses three outcomes that a BPM process can offer:

  • Charity on strategic direction
  • Alignment of the firm’s resources
  • Increased discipline in daily operations
End-to-end workflow automation

Build fully-customizable, no code process workflows in a jiffy.

Benefits of using Business Process Management Software

1. Increase Efficiency

The inefficiencies like inaccuracy, extreme time consumption, unreliability, etc. are all removed from the process hence, making the process more efficient. The software for business process management effectively streamlines the different tasks with a process that all the limitations are taken care of and removes any wastage of resources. As the process is optimized no steps are skipped and proper harmony is achieved with each of them.

2. Enhanced Productivity

As the efficiency of the different processes improves, the productivity of the business elevates too. Several constraints are removed, resources are saved, and tedious and redundant tasks are completely erased from the workflow through process automation. When such limitations are overcome the employees are left with more time to focus on the high-value tasks. 

3. Improves Collaboration

Businesses are made up of multiple units or departments and there is always a high possibility for siloed functioning of the works. When business gets broader, achieving proper coordination can be an unnerving process.

So, what can be done to prevent this?

BPM software is one of the effective solutions that can deal with working conditions. It provides an overall view into all the processes that happen simultaneously in one space, hence allowing to exercise an effective control over the functioning and improving collaboration.  

Some other benefits include

  • Improves cash flow by cutting down on costs
  • Enhances degree of customer service and satisfaction
  • Manage risks and align with compliance regulations
  • Design and generate new process designs with ease
  • Accelerate time to market
  • Streamline business processes

How to Pick and Evaluate a BPM Software?

With the features and benefits being discussed, it is now important to understand how to choose the right BPM software for your organization’s size, industry, and customer base.

Here is a checklist that entails all the important questions to ask when choosing a tool. 

  • What are the organization’s primary needs to be achieved using BPM software?
  • What type of hosting do you need: on-premise or cloud?
  • What is the budget sanctioned to you by the finance department?
  • How much will the software cost and how much will be the hidden cost?
  • What is the licensing model that you prefer: open source, free limited versions, or fully paid versions?
  • What is the ROI of your current clients?
  • How much tech–based know-how does the end-user have to have?
  • What are the pain points and limitations the current clients are facing?
  • Does the BPM software have the potential to scale?
  • Does it have the ability to abide by the compliance regulations?
  • What are the reviews by the customers on the product?
  • How much training will your employees need before using the software?

So, apart from these questions, the following two factors must be checked before finalizing a tool. They are:

User interface (UI)

Process management is a serious and hard task. The last problem that you want your team to face is a complex and rigid interface. Therefore, the tool must offer an effective User Interface (UI) that is user-friendly and will enable users to navigate and work seamlessly without any hassle.

Usability

Simple and intuitive interfaces like drag-and-drop, no-code workflow, or low-code workflow builders will allow users/employees to work easily. Therefore, usability is an important and must-have parameter that will help the users learn the tool much faster. Additionally, ensure that the tool also offers tech support, user support, training, and tutorials for an effective experience.

Who Uses BPM Software?

In a broader sense, BPM workflow software is traditionally used by medium and enterprise-sized organizations. This is due to the large working departments that often tend to be in a siloed fashion. This is where BPM software becomes an effective solution. Smaller businesses, on the other hand, have limited departments and most often do not require any workflow management tool.

In most businesses, BPM software is most implemented and used by operations and IT administrators and finance departments. Some other organizations might have business analysts or process directors who will ensure that the processes are streamlined correctly.

Apart from all these, all the other departments that can effectively put BPM software into use are as follows:

1. Sales

With the implementation of BPM software, the sales process can improve and automate the activities in the sales process, especially tasks like contract creation and approval. A feature like document management comes in handy when generating the contract. This is important because once the prospect is ready to buy the product, the very next step is to build a contract with them based on the agreements that are made.

2. Supply Chain

Once the purchase deal is finalized the step that follows is the shipment of these goods. When the purchase order is signed, the software will take it forward by placing the exact order by the customer. Gradually, the tool will integrate with the business’s CRM system into the supply chain process. Meanwhile, the order is simultaneously auto-entered into the ERP system of the business. In the end, the goods are manufactured and shipped to the customer. 

3. Accounting

Once the goods are shipped and delivered, it is the accounting department’s role to take note of the delivery that is made. It has to take note of how much goods were shipped, how much did the customer pay for it, etc. Using BPM software can automatically enter these into the accounting system.

4. Banking and Finance

All the finance functions like customer onboarding, deposit, credit, and loan processing can be streamlined based on customer data. Moreover, all the functions and processing can be kept in check for any compliance and risks.

5. Marketing

For marketing, BPM software will aid in the mapping, analysis, design, and execution of different marketing strategies by connecting all the team members in one space. It promises measured delegation of roles and responsibilities, hence, giving more control over the process and allowing to effectively reach the target audience.

6. IT Operations

Implementing BPM software in IT operations allows the optimizations of the existing processes and also can add new structures to these processes. BPM software is scalable and can support any developmental process. Additionally, it can effectively remove bottlenecks and redundancies hence, improving efficiency.

Here is a closer look into some additional functionalities that can be completely transformed into an optimized one with BPM software. 

  • Account management
  • Claims management 
  • Management of customer orders
  • Compliance management 
  • Budget tracking and management
  • Employee onboarding
  • Document management
  • Inventory management
  • Invoice processing
  • Project and workflow tracking
  • Business performance monitoring

Alternatives to BPM (Business Process Management Software)

Here are some of the alternatives to replace Business Process Management Software

1. Workflow Management Software

Workflow management software is best when the business is not required to have the complete business process and administrative work. This management software is more suitable for trivial process tasks like facilitating workflow. This is the best software tool to define, structure, and manage business tasks, and benefits small and medium-sized organizations with limited operations the most.

2. Robotic Process Automation (RPA) Software

If your organization is facing many repetitive and mundane tasks then robotic process automation would be the best choice and can automate by simply just mimicking the clicks and the activities that happen on the computer screen and take over the process. These are effective and can follow any workflow without any human supervision as well. 

3. Rapid Application Development (RAD) Software

Businesses do not have to be restricted to one single automation software. In addition to BPM software, a rapid application development software that is a low-code and no-code development platform. With such software, businesses can build new software with minimum coding. 

Challenges with Business Process Management (BPM) Software

Even though a business process management system is highly effective for businesses, certain challenges tag along with it. Let us explore these challenges.

Return on Investment (ROI)

It is quite difficult to understand the Return on Investment when using BPM software. The reason behind this is that when using a BPM tool it is difficult to measure the degree of productivity and the amount of efficiency that has been scaled in the processes.

Integration

Most businesses have so many newer updates to their software solutions and integration becomes a major concern for most of them. This is the case when businesses are using legacy and on-premises solutions and it becomes expensive and challenging to make the process streamlined in reality.

Which Companies Should Buy Business Process Management (BPM) Software?

1. Financial services

Financial institutions like banks, brokerage firms, and credit unions can massively benefit from a BPM tool. One major advantage is that they can get a complete understanding of the processes and the different systems across the business. Moreover, financial services are one of the most regulated sectors, and taking aid from BPM software can keep the processes compliant with the regulations. 

2. Healthcare

Data in healthcare is highly crucial. It has to be managed effectively with utmost accuracy. This can be achieved with the help of BPM software. All the data related to incoming patients, and their insurance claims have to be processed efficiently. The software, BPM, has the potential to streamline all these tasks, manage data perfectly, and also reduce any possible risks or extra costs. 

3. Government

Government organizations handle a huge bundle of data. To actively sort and manage all the data, the business process management tool can effectively categorize and treat data accordingly. Multiple requests can be processed automatically hence making faster approvals.

4. Educational Institutions

Even for educational institutions, all the data regarding the employees and students can be effectively managed and maintained as records using BPM workflow software.

5. Real Estate

All the customers can be managed effortlessly using BPM software. It ensures faster approvals, enhanced lead scoring, advanced lead distribution, and offers a strong customer experience management.

Steps to Buy Business Process Management (BPM) Software

Choosing the right BPM software is a task to be done perfectly. If your business is seeking to automate and streamline the processes, the right tool has to be implemented. For this, certain organized steps to always and on the right one. Here are the steps to follow that would help you choose and buy the best business process management software for your organization.

Compare some of the Business Process Management (BPM) software products

  • The first step has to be creating a long list of vendors with a wider range of potential partnerships.
  • The second step is to shortlist the long list of vendors to a smaller number based on certain criteria like pointed questions, demos, and trials. An ideal shortlisting can have up to 4-5 finalized ones. 
  • This has to be followed by conducting demos with each shortlisted prospect. This is one of the best parameters to compare and contrast between options. 

Selection of BPM software for your business

  • A selection team has to be solely made to find the right product for your organization. They have to possess knowledge about the different processes and how each tool can be beneficial to the business. 
  • The next is the negotiation stage where both the parties benefit from the contract. 
  • The last stage is where the final decision is made based on the inferences made by the selection team.

Business Process Management Software Trends

It is highly essential to be informed about the changing trends in the software market. With each day passing, digital transformation is reaching new heights every day, and keeping updated with these changes would aid in making the right choice for your organization. Some recent key trends to out for in the BPM industry are:

Machine Learning

Machine learning functionality in BPM software allows it to be more predictive and functional to changing needs. This can help a business be more efficient and also improve its adaptability to meet customer expectations. A machine learning-based BPM software can judge what is and what is not working in a process and make changes accordingly. It benefits the business by saving time, energy, and resources. 

Analytics

Managing data is an important business function and to be able to monitor them closely is what allows us to make immediate and critical decisions. The analytics would give the business a clear understanding of the effectiveness of the processes and also identify the areas of improvement. 

10 Best Business Process Management Software to Look Forward to in 2024

1. Cflow

Cflow is a comprehensive automation software that can streamline your complex business processes efficiently. It is a no-code workflow platform that offers varied facilities like workflow templates, and API integration, and caters to different business areas like Human Resources, sales, marketing, finance and accounting, IT, procurement, and many more.

Cflow is the best BPM software that you can find in the market. 

Key Functions:

  • Form Builder – The workflow form builder can be built just with a simple drag-and-drop action. 
  • Customizations – Anything and everything can be customized based on the needs of the business. 
  • OCR Extraction – Any data or image can be extracted from multiple sources using the OCR feature that the platform offers. 
  • Kanban – Manage and prioritize all the tasks effectively with the new Kanban feature.
  • Routing and Notification – Automated notifications and task routing can be achieved successfully. 
  • Reports and Analytics – with this platform, users can acquire robust and detailed reports and analytics on everything related to the process workflow, and help you make informed decisions.

Source: Cflow

2. Appian BPM Suite

Appian BPM Suite is the best for designing internal tools and workflows for complex business operations. All these functions can be achieved in a common space. As a low-code development platform, the tool is highly user-friendly and allows users to use it without any technical assistance. Collaboration is also a notable feature of the tool. 

Key Functions:

  • Process Modelling – With a simple drag-and-drop interface, processes can be designed and structured effortlessly. This is beneficial for business analysts and experts who can effectively create and work on business processes without the usage of any code. 
  • Workflows – Workflows can be created to automate repetitive and tedious tasks and are ‘if-then ’-based. These workflows can streamline and navigate tasks, data, documents, and timely notifications to all the associated employees. 
  • Integration – Any external SaaS-based applications and databases can be integrated with the platform.
  • Monitoring and Analytics – real-time tracking and monitoring can be achieved that allows the effective removal of limitations, silos, and bottlenecks in the processes. 

Limitations:

  • The software only offers a limited and rigid network of contractors and other third parties.

appian

Source: Appian

3. Oracle BPM

As a basic BPM software, Oracle’s BPM actively designs, automates, monitors, and optimizes any business operation. The main feature of the platform is that it is model-driven allowing business analysts to design and create process models through a graphical interface. 

Key Functions:

  • Process Modeling – The processes can be designed visually with visibility into process status and activity. This also improves collaboration between teams as all of the users can communicate on one platform. 
  • Automation – Automation is a key concept with ‘if-then’ leading the processes to finish. This setup automatically finishes the tasks allowing only minimal human involvement. 
  • Monitoring and Analysis – A robust monitoring and tracking system can study performance and KPIs based on data.
  • Optimization – Optimizing the processes includes evaluating the performance and making necessary changes to streamline it properly. This is done by removing all the redundant steps.
  • Integrations – Integration is also a key feature that the platform offers. 

Limitations:

  • Implementation of the platform is complex as it often requires a third-party application. 
  • Customization cannot be explored in depth as it demands the users to master JDeveloper and ADF. This can be a huge limitation to non-technical users.

oracle

Source: Oracle BPM

4. Laserfiche

Laserfiche is one of the most well-known document management and automation platforms. This tool can effectively streamline all the document-based tasks hence enhancing productivity and data management. The product’s main focus is to digitize business processes for enterprises and automate document-centric tasks. 

Key Functions:

  • Document Capture – The platform can be used to scan physical documents and seamlessly transfer digital files.
  • Workflow Automaton – The tool is efficient in designing and automating workflows and managing required documents. 
  • Customization – On this platform, all the workflows and processes are customizable which requires a bit of coding skills. 
  • Analytics and Reporting – For proper insights into the business, the analytics and reporting tool can give real-time data. 

Limitations:

  • The platform has a poor interface and is often deemed as not user-friendly.

laserfiche

Source: Laserfiche

5. Nintex Workflow Automation

With a simple drag-and-drop interface, the Nintex workflow automation platform also offers enterprises tools to discover, automate, and optimize their business processes. Nintex can be best matched with Microsoft Office Suite tools that will act as it aids the users in processing numerous documents.

Key Functions:

  • Workflows – The platform can be used for creating visual and step-by-step process workflows with just a drag-and-drop action. 
  • Integration – With the involvement of any code, the tool can be integrated with any external application. 
  • Reports and Analytics – This allows the users to generate detailed reports on the performance of the processes.
  • Document Creation – The tool can create PDF documents from databases, like images or documents.

Limitations:

  • It has been reported by the users that the loading speed of the application is slow. 
  • The Nintex forms do not support features like repeating tables.

Nintex-9

Source: Nintex

6. ProcessMaker

Processmaker’s ultimate specialty lies in automating redundant tasks and integrating the application across the stack. It is also the best for extracting data from files like images, files, and documents. 

Key Functions:

  • No-code Workflows – ProcessMaker also offers a drag-and-drop user interface.
  • Automation – the business processes can be triggered automatically and conditional logic can be used to customize the workflow. 
  • Form Builder – Custom forms can be created where filling in the data and automatically validating the entries.
  • Document Management – With document management, users can effortlessly extract, store, and even retrieve data from documents. 

Limitations:

  • Some of the advanced processes in the platform are found to be complicated, especially in the case of coding.

Process Maker-4

Source: ProcessMaker

7. CMW Platform

CMW Platform is a renowned low-code digital transformation software that majorly focuses on process automation power that is capable of building novel business applications. This platform can be effectively used for a single department as well as on an enterprise level. 

Key Functions:

  • Process Modeling and Analysis – All business processes can be modeled and generated with this no-code editor.
  • Third-party Integrations – Extracting and transferring data, sending notifications, automating processes, and integrating across all third-party applications can all be achieved using 
  • Digital Data Collection – The platform replaces all the paper forms converting them to e-document. These are configurable electronic forms that can easily export data to an external storage system. 
  • Visual Workflows – Workflows are graphically notated and can show any process’s complex architecture in simple representations. 

Limitations:

  • The customer support of the platform is often found to be slow. 
  • The platform has a steep learning curve for non-technical users.

CMW Platform

Source: CMW Platform

8. Oracle Fusion Middleware

From the Oracle Corporation, the Oracle Fusion Middleware is a collection of middleware tools. The purpose of this collection is to facilitate integration that potentially connects various software applications, systems, and tools in an organization. 

Key Functions:

  • BPM – As a Business Process Management tool, it can be used effectively to design, model, and automate business processes.
  • Customization – The users are allowed to expand the customization feature with JDeveloper and other Application Development Frameworks of Oracles.
  • Analytics – The robust analytics and reports will give a detailed analysis of the process performance and detect places of bottlenecks.
  • Integrations – Using this platform users can integrate SaaS, cloud, as well as any on-premise applications using APIs. 

Limitations:

  • The platform might have some technical instability.

Oracle Fusion Middleware

Source: Oracle Fusion Middleware

9. AutomationAnywhere

AutomationAnywhere is an RPA platform using which enterprises can automate all redundant tasks easily. This platform too works on the ‘if-then’ rules but caters to larger enterprises. The tool leverages solutions like AI, machine learning, and analytics that are built-in. 

Key Functions:

  • Workflows – The platform can be used to generate no-code workflows and tools using the drag-and-drop interface. 
  • Automation – This BPM tool can be effectively used to optimize and streamline all business operations. 
  • Virtual Robots – Virtual robots are deployed that are powerful enough to mimic human actions on systems and the cloud. 

Limitations:

  • The budget can be the biggest constraint if you are a small business.

AutomationAnywhere

Source: AutomationAnyware

10. OnBase

OnBase is a tool that provides a wide spectrum of department-based solutions for optimizing different business processes. The platform offers high-level automation that streamlines any repetitive tasks and bottlenecks. The platform not only caters to IT but goes beyond and also delivers fast ROI. 

Key Functions:

  • Process Automation – Automation is the key function and it effectively removes any errors and delays. 
  • File Management – The platform supports any file type and also has the feature of OCR Scanning using which data can be extracted from documents. 
  • Customization – The platform offers customization of all the processes and workflows. 

Limitations:

  • The platform has a poor user interface.
  • The platform can be expensive for some small businesses.

OnBase

Source: OnBase

Conclusion

Transforming and revolutionizing business processes have become simpler with BPM software. Enhance the performance of your business and reach new heights of efficiency by finding the right tool.

Cflow is one of the best BPM software that you can lean on with trust. With high security and data privacy, our platform can improve processes and offer you complete control over them.

To experience this transformation with Cflow, sign up now and start your free trial today.

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