Building the Business Case for BPM Automation in Process Manufacturing

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1 Building the Business Case for BPM Automation in Process Manufacturing Business process management automation streamlines your enterprise, strengthens your ERP solution and dramatically lowers costs. If you manufacture in the chemical, pharmaceuticals or food and beverage industries, you may be enduring inefficient business processes that cause revenue leaks and employee frustration, and lack alignment with changing regulatory requirements. Repetitive tasks can waste workers time, inventory inaccuracies can contribute to cost and delivery delays, trouble spots can slip through the cracks, and the organization can be at risk for noncompliance. The alternative approach is to leverage business process management (BPM) workflow automation. BPM is a holistic method of process management that can make your organization more efficient, more effective and more adaptable to changing technology and regulations. However, not all systems are created equal, and having the right workflow automation solution to complement your enterprise resource planning (ERP) system is critical. Reducing or eliminating manual processes through BPM automation can give you a competitive edge, helping you identify manufacturing trouble spots, improve employee job satisfaction and ensure regulatory compliance. CONTENTS : The Trouble With Manual Processes Ross BPM: Purpose-Built Automation for Your ERP

2 The Trouble With Manual Processes For manufacturers, manual flow processes often come with built-in problems: Processes are inefficient and time consuming, and when it comes to software or spreadsheets, there are limited options to customize process flows to your unique environment. Manual processes also have no built-in compliance checks and may put the organization at risk for fines and audits. Additionally, manual processes often lack the interconnectivity to other enterprise systems that not only enable total enterprise visibility, but also ensure accurate and timely billing, revenue recognition and cost reconciliation. Today s most competitive businesses avoid these problems and adapt to modern challenges by using cutting-edge technology to take control of their data, improve productivity and empower employees to act on information. Successful organizations are also responsive enough to adapt to changing customer dynamics, technology and a shifting global economy. One in five companies surveyed say that significant manual effort and traditional spreadsheets are used for production planning and optimization. Accenture 2012 Risk Analytics Study: Insights for the Chemicals Industry survey of 465 risk managers If you re looking for a solid argument for joining their ranks, here are three reasons to add BPM automation to your process manufacturing ERP solution: 1. Repetitive, mundane tasks occupy resources, create bottlenecks and cost money. Manual flow processes can keep information from efficiently moving from checkpoint to checkpoint. These delays can slow throughput, hold up billing and cause lags in revenue recognition during the corresponding accounting periods. BPM workflow automation eliminates revenue obstructions by flagging delays so they can be escalated, prioritized and resolved quickly. These alerts expedite troubleshooting, reduce or eliminate stalled billings and improve revenue reconciliation. Manual flow processes can also have a negative impact on productivity because they require unnecessary human intervention. For example, when employees have to fill in the same standard fields over and over, or manually pass information from stage to stage, it slows the process, 2

3 introduces opportunities for human error and is tiresome for staff. BPM automation solves this problem by automatically populating standard fields; it also speeds routing by making it possible to move the process to the next step with a click of a button. 2. Manual processes prevent the system from identifying process anomalies, trends, problems and accurate progress. Manual processes can cause you to overlook critical anomalies in the process flow. When these deviations are overlooked, employees have to repeat the work once the problem is identified. This rework is expensive to the organization, and it frustrates employees. BPM automation ensures that you don t miss a process flow deviation, since it won t let processes proceed to the next checkpoint until all critical steps are complete. Nonstandard processes also prevent managers from having easy access to accurate, real-time process statuses. BPM automation standardizes manufacturing process flows and provides factual, real-time status updates so managers stay informed at all times. This significantly enhances your core software capabilities, strengthening ERP and other critical enterprise tools. As not all processes follow a standard flow 100% of the time, BPM also allows for exceptions where the standard process deviates, allowing full tracking and measurement of the deviation or branch. Finally, changes or updates to manual processes can cause a lot of extra work: Someone has to document the changes and ensure that everyone else is operating on the most current procedures. BPM automates the change process and presents a new top-down flow that ensures everyone is using the most current process. 3. Lack of standardized processes compromises compliance and regulatory adherence. The White House Office of Management and Budget reports that major regulatory compliance rules cost manufacturers up How Companies Use BPM One large petro-chemical company used Ross BPM to overhaul its purchase requisition process. By replacing the paper process with BPM automation, the company was able to run requisitions through from creation to completion with no human intervention. This streamlined the process while ensuring adherence to the right approval levels and spending limits. 3

4 to $19 billion in To minimize product chain interruptions and maximize revenues, organizations must stay fully compliant, a modern business concern that becomes more complex every year. Lack of standardization, however, is the enemy of compliance and can cause real damage to an organization. Health advocacy groups report that pharmaceutical companies alone have paid almost $20 billion in fines since If a process problem goes unnoticed, your organization may be at risk for such fines as well as reputation damage. When your organization stays compliant, not only is there a positive financial impact, but you can rest assured that you re doing everything possible to ensure security and public safety. A BPM automation solution gives you a strong economic edge by ensuring that the agreed upon process is not subverted. Process automation enables a standard, preconfigured flow that aligns to industry expectations. Standard workflows help ensure audit compliance and give you a full paper trail should you need it. Ross BPM: Purpose-Built Automation for Your ERP Whether you re re-evaluating your existing ERP application or searching for a replacement for time-consuming spreadsheets, it s important to find an application that fits your unique needs and can scale as you grow. Whatever you choose, a comprehensive solution should: Improve production. Automate manual processes. Streamline financials. Optimize the supply chain. Improve product costing. Manage multiple units of measure and variable product characteristics simultaneously. Accelerate product recalls through lot traceability. Help you meet regulatory compliance requirements. Ross ERP is an enterprise resource planning software solution that can do all of these things and more. Designed for the unique challenges of chemical, pharmaceutical and food and beverage manufacturers, Ross ERP streamlines inventory management for accurate, real-time data, higher quality products, faster time to market, quicker inventory turns and lower manufacturing costs. Ross ERP allows you to make informed, real-time manufacturing decisions to enhance quality, increase plant throughput, contain costs and improve delivery performance. BPM automation complements Ross ERP, automating its workflow processes to reduce costs, speed time to revenue, lower manual processing errors and risk, and align inventory to demand. Coupled with intuitive, easy-to-use traceability solutions that track your products and ingredients from suppliers to end users, Ross ERP with BPM automation helps ensure inventory accuracy, ontime delivery and efficient resource utilization. 1 Draft Report to Congress on the Benefits and Costs of Federal Regulations and Agency Compliance With the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act, White House Office of Management and Budget, Pharmaceutical Industry Criminal and Civil Penalties: An Update, Public Citizen, Sept. 27,

5 With its integrated BPM, Ross ERP takes the guesswork out of the process for chemical, pharmaceutical and food and beverage manufacturers. Its automated processes help businesses maintain compliance, lower risk, reduce human error and optimize the supply chain, production, inventory management and customer management, making it a clear choice for the process sector. Aptean, a global leader in enterprise application software, gives businesses of all sizes a competitive edge. We empower people and businesses with end-to-end, industry-specific solutions to address complex business challenges more effectively. Our software applications and professional business services enable more than 9,000 customers in more than 100 countries to more successfully manage their businesses. Software built specifically for our target markets, aligned with deep knowledge across vertical industries, allow businesses to satisfy their customers, operate most efficiently and stay at the forefront of their industry. For more information, visit 5

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