How PLM can use power of BPM rising stars?

The following article “The State of BPM: Poised to Take Off” drove my attention few days ago and took me to think about BPM and PLM intersection. Recession can spur business growth. In the Business Process Management (BPM) space, current recession presented major marketing opportunity to come to customers and IT that looking to cut cost. BPM can be easy double their numbers in the next coming years. BPM community shows signs of growth and development. Examples: pure BPM player Global 360, significantly upgrade their offering in July-2009, IBM significantly upgraded their WebSphere product line. In addition, Software AG, major German BPM player announced acquisition of BPM IT consulting firm IDS Scheer for almost $700M. Some BPM background. There are three main groups of Business Process Management vendors: 1/Integration centric; 2/Human Centric; 3/Document Centric. The BPM market, initially dominated by few pure BPM players, have changed. At the same time, pure BPM business is much smaller in comparison to an overall PLM market. However, if we will compare Process Oriented PLM offering (excluding parts of PLM such as CAD, CAE etc.) we can see very compatible numbers.

Do you think BPM may have positive impact on Product Lifecycle Management business? Yes, I can see this opportunity. Here my top 3 “why” PLM can use power of BPM providers to improve PLM position in organization in current turbulent time.

1. Re-use well-developed BPM technologies

BPM vendors today grew up to demonstrate tools and technological infrastructure on a very matured level that everybody can use. BPM platforms became part of general IT infrastructure, especially by big IT vendors (IBM and Oracle) entered this market.

2. Optimization of IT infrastructure

How many process technologies do you need in your organization? If today’s economies, people cannot keep two systems to manage business processes, therefore PLM and BPM have an opportunity to present IT cost saving by unification of process infrastructure.

3. Jump to the cloud based space.

There is a good chance for BPM to become part of private cloud infrastructure for organizations. Tight re-use of BPM technologies in BPM can help to PLM companies to make their cloud shift.

So, what is my conclusion? The BPM boom, in my view, is only matter of time. Everyone wants to streamline and optimize processes. So, BPM is not luxury anymore. PLM could be potential interested in re-use of BPM technologies to increase adoption and span product oriented processes across organization. I see very sensitive situation in today’s PLM process oriented offerings by trying to re-develop or ignore BPM suites and technologies. The potential shift can come from customer’s side by trying to implement and integrate BPM and PLM products together.

Just my thoughts.
Best, Oleg


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