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To Improve BPM, Go Back to the (Data) Source

Business Performance Management is meant to help make intelligent business decisions, but it also requires investment, in many cases, into an IT system to support it. As Linda Imonti explains in this article, there isn't necessary a parallel between the amount of money invested in an IT solution for BPM and the results. Sometimes, Imonti says, it comes down to how data is gathered, processed, and presented. Despite the efforts within BPM to improve data accuracy, create efficient access to data, and enable business decisions, companies often do not achieve these results:

  But how often BPM actually produces these results is an open question. Despite an annual global outlay of around $60 billion, according to AMR Research, BI rarely delivers on its promises. After making technology investments, only 38 percent of CFOs saw an improvement in the quality of their financial information, and only slightly more — 43 percent — realized faster information delivery, according to a 2008 KPMG International study. With such poor results, it's not surprising that many companies, even after a BI or BPM initiative, continue to rely on spreadsheets to provide the visibility and control they need — the very spreadsheets their solution was intended to eliminate. 

Counteracting this outcome requires a more “holistic” view of BPM programs, focusing on what the needs of the users and stakeholders are, defining the right metrics, and prioritizing data quality over the amount of data that can be gathered.

About Anne Grybowski

Anne is a former staff writer for CAI's Accelerating IT Success, with a degree in Media Studies from Penn State University.

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