According to Forrester, many enterprises still struggle with digital transformation. They are bogged down with siloed systems and error-prone manual processes. They struggle because they still have a way to go in automating operational processes around the customer journeys. Yet, automation of the operational processes is a must on the way to digital business.
The Keys to Successful Digital Transformation
Digitizing business processes is not only focused on the automation of existing processes. It can also lead to reinventing processes.
Often when workflows and processes are digitized, it is done by adding more single-use systems and applications. This is problematic because it results in increased information chaos as these applications remain siloed.
Bridging the Gaps Between Individual Applications is a Key Element of Digitization.
Smart usage of information is necessary to gain business efficiency. And smart usage of information is dependent on gaining access to all relevant information to support decision-making. There is no place for silos; employees need easy access to relevant information when they need it. Information — and access to it — needs to support their working processes.
More Efficient Information Management and Business Processes
There are three keys to successfully automate and digitize business. These three keys are the elements of intelligent information management.
- Intelligent information management is metadata driven so that documents and processes to be managed by metadata and be found in context.
- Intelligent information management is system and repository neutral to connect separate information silos across the organization.
- And, intelligent information management is powered by artificial intelligence and machine learning, which helps automate routine tasks and remove human error.
M-Files Supports All Business Processes
M-Files supports all document-centric business processes. It brings together documents, data, content, workflows and business processes. This helps you automate the workflows to support your digital business.
M-Files Intelligent Information Management spans across all systems, applications and content repositories. It provides a single, centralized solution to benefit the whole organization.
AI-driven workflows support business processes, ensure quality, and promote consistent levels of service. Streamlining workflows related to document-intensive business processes creates efficiencies across the whole business – in accounting, HR, legal, production, marketing and customer service teams. This improves the speed at which business is conducted and enhances customer experience.
For an organization, a merger or acquisition is not just a strategic process. It’s an event, which requires a lot of planning, analysis, and collaboration among stakeholders. Still, 70 to 90% of mergers and acquisitions (M&A) fail*.
The number is quite alarming. Given that each deal is a result of a thought-out strategy with consultants and CXOs working day and night. So, what could be the reason for this high failure rate of mergers and acquisitions?
As per McKinsey, post-merger 50 to 60% of the initiatives intended to capture synergies are strongly related to IT. However, during M&A, IT discussions often get ignored. Organizations need to accept that M&A is not just about financials or long-term business plans, it’s about technology too. And, CIOs play a key role in determining the success of the event.
Integrating IT for Effective Mergers and Acquisitions
As a CIO to get all the systems and processes up and running on day one is a no mean feat. The risk is high, and your team needs to act fast. This requires you to take the front seat and build a technology landscape, ensuring synchronization across organizations. And, to do that you need to address the below 3 challenges:
- Taking Legacy Forward or Building a new Legacy
“75% of an integration effort during a merger or acquisition is determining which systems to keep, what data is important and how much integration is actually needed before the companies are technically joined.”- Stephen N. David, a CIO-100 honoree
With various enterprise-wide IT implementations, you accumulate a multitude of legacy systems and applications. So, post-M&A, you are faced with a task to survive and thrive with legacy and find ways to modernize it.
- Creating a Digital Strategy
Your organization’s digital strategy could be around business transformation, customer-centric innovation or overall business performance. It’s important to set digital goals that you wish to achieve, post a merger or acquisition basis which you would then chart an IT integration roadmap.
To be operational, you need to ensure that employees have access to the business information anytime-anywhere. However, the key here is to ensure information security and compliance.
Business Process Management (BPM) for Mergers & Acquisitions
Another challenge that most of the businesses face is the inability to track strategy-to-outcome across organizations. Using a process platform like BPM with built-in content-centric workflows on cloud can act as a savior and ensure successful M&As. Here’s how BPM ensures a high success rate:
BPM allows you to re-engineer processes, integrate operations and monitor performance.
It makes your work easier by helping you identify which processes are to be eliminated or retained, along with the ones should be combined.
- Continuous Process Improvement
After the M&A, the focus shifts to improving the overall business performance. BPM along with technologies such as social, mobility, and analytics enable omnichannel and contextual engagement, allowing users to do business anytime-anywhere, and driving the process improvement programs.
- Centralized Content-Centric Process Platform on Cloud
Unlike other processes, mergers and acquisitions processes are collaborative, content-centric, and long-running. They require a process platform like BPM with strong content management capabilities that allow for multi-geography enterprise-wide information access and collaboration.
In the absence of the right technology solution, your executives have used emails, word, excel, and power points for M&A strategy and planning. By using BPM as a service, you empower employees with the flexibility to easily model workflows and deploy processes. This helps in accommodating a wide range of business applications and maintaining an oversight across processes.
- Decouple Platform Engineering, Governance and Implementation
Key to successful mergers and acquisitions is to decouple engineering from governance and implementation. On-boarding the right technology partner helps you build a platform best-suited for your business needs. While selecting a solution for mergers and acquisitions, it’s important to ensure that it meets your current needs and is scalable to cater to future business requirements.
Business process management (BPM) platform acts as an enabler to make mergers and acquisitions successful and helps CIOs, like you, to proactively assess and address challenges during the process. At Newgen, we aim to help you achieve your goals and reinvent your business through our transformative platforms.
The following is a guest post from Bastiaan Brefeld, Information Management Specialist with Netherlands-based M-Files Partner of the Year GeONE.
Choosing a software solution in the field of information and document management often has a clear purpose for organizations. This frequently involves common goals like:
- Increasing efficiency
- Reducing errors and costs of failure
- More insight
- Being able to work mobile
- Digitizing, in general
- Or… several of these goals together
These goals carry a lot of weight and tend to have the highest priority in such a project. But there is one major factor that is often forgotten — and it’s a catalyst to achieving these higher goals.
The Search for the Right Vendor
With one or more of these objectives, the management of an organization goes to the market in search of a suitable software product that can meet these needs. At the same time, they are looking for the most suitable vendor that supplies and implements the software product.
When a nice combination of product and vendor is found that fits well with the demand, the ordering organization starts the project together with the vendor. The project team of the organization focuses more and more on the details and elaboration of the objectives. Together with the vendor, they look for the correct interpretation, design and implementation of the software product. Together they eventually arrive at a functional design, exactly as the management of the organization had in mind at the start of their search.
The Implementation of the Software
Based on its interpretation of the functional design, the vendor translates this into the design of the software. The vendor then delivers the system to the client with due pride.
But then suddenly…
…The solution does not seem to be entirely in line with the wishes of the client.
…Users do not understand the solution, do not like to work with it or do not see the added value of it.
All despite the fact that the project team had developed such a good, functional design.
The result: a rigorous adaptation to the system, a substantial budget overrun, dissatisfied users and, above all, no solution to the initial problem.
It’s Not What… but Who
I see this example a lot in the market. Many companies, but also software vendors, pay too little attention to the people who ultimately work with the software: the end users.
The success of a software implementation depends on user adoption. And to achieve positive user adoption goals, we developed the M-Files Build & Play method. It’s an implementation method that involves the users in the software right from the start.
For a successful software implementation, we cut the system layout into small and clear pieces. This means that we work with prototypes. A prototype forms the layout of the software around a specific and demarcated area — the Build. This area then consists of a process, working method or procedure of the client’s organization.
The prototype, the working method and the use of the software will be tested directly by the users — the Play. We then collect important feedback. We explore extensively with users how they experience the software from their perspective. This indispensable feedback is reflected in the design, configuration and approach.
Through these short iterations, we ultimately improve and refine the functional design and layout of the software until it is fully tailored to the user organization and the working method and meets the set objectives.
Think of it like building a new house. We do this space for space with great attention to detail and continuous adjustment by the client, so that ultimately all rooms are to the specifications of the person who has to live in them. Ultimately, this way you create the ideal home that everyone is satisfied with and at the same time ensures innovation.
By closely involving the users, you can avoid several problems that are common in software implementations:
Grip on the project
An organization often loses control from the moment that software enters the implementation phase. By closely involving the organization and its users through a continuous iterative process, the client is always in the driver seat. This prevents unexpected surprises and gives companies full control.
Connection to processes
The software must adapt to the client’s processes and not the other way around. By working with each process or working method separately, you prevent and ensure a seamless connection.
Normally, organizations spend a lot of time on the job description and then hope that the software vendor interprets and realizes their job correctly. By focusing on the results per step, process or employee group during the implementation, the client immediately knows whether the right path has been taken. In this way, you avoid unwanted surprises that you, as an implementation partner, did not see coming.
To sum up, I would like to give the following to you — whether you’re a software vendor, solution reseller, implementation partner or a customer:
Focus on the user throughout the entire project, from initiation to implementation. Their working methods, roles, responsibilities and processes are the guiding principles. Users are good at their job and they are not software specialists. The feedback from these users is crucial. Only with their involvement you can make a document management project successful.