Introduction to Business Process Management using SAP Solution Manager 7.2
How does your business run? Is your current business running as successfully as it should? How would you know if it wasn’t? Are there areas for improvement and optimization?
Any ERP system is a collection of business processes. SAP is unique in not only its ability to support many different types of business processes, but also its scalability. Ever changing business environments and conditions may require companies to create or modify their business processes to drive revenue, reduce cost and risk, or maintain compliance.
A company’s business processes, either created intentionally or otherwise, should be documented and managed. The best time to document a business process is when the business processes are being created or modified. The software BUILD cycles are usually well funded exercises where companies are looking drive specific benefits from a new application. It is during the requirements, design, build, test and deploy cycle that Business Process Management should begin.
Our CoreALM team actively evangelizes customers on the value that SAP Solution Manager 7.2 provides for Business Process Management. Solution Manager’s (Business) Process Management provides a broad set of tools to accurately document the way your company does business, supports all aspect of the BUILD and RUN of SAP software, but also allows companies to leverage SAP Best Practices.
Business Process Management (BPM) can be characterized as having different levels.
The Business Process Repository (BPR) is the highest level for Business Process Management. From a SAP Solution Manager perspective, and in general terms, it should be consider the “single source of truth” for a company’s SAP systems.
The Business Process Hierarchy (BPH) is how the Business Process Repository is organized using a folder structure. A well-designed process hierarchy is critical to ensuring good process management, solution documentation, and accurate process models. The BPH folder structure allows for all relevant documents to be stored in logical manner to support the complete understanding of any aspect of a business process.
The Business Process Hierarchy (BPH) in SAP Solution Manager 7.2 is usually view by either business process types, either end-to-end, or modular or by the Business Process Library. Process hierarchy is the foundation for a common understanding of the business processes operated by your organization. It follows the from-abstract-to-concrete principle and provides information about the processes at different levels of granularity.
- Modular processes are processes that typically do not exceed the functional domain of an organization, there is always one organization that has the responsibility for the entire process. These processes should be grouped by functional domains that correspond to organizational structures.
- Modular processes are a functional decomposition of business processes, represented by a hierarchical structure of folders and – on the lowest level – a process diagram showing process steps.
- End-to-end processes do not stop at the boundaries of a process area or an organization, typical use cases of such process documentation from a business perspective is to understand the value creation process within the company. From IT perspective it can focus on integration or regression tests for a complete scenario, you can also use these processes for documentation or to discuss business requirements with the business users.
- End-to-end processes are usually complex because they involve a relatively high number of process steps and embed also modular processes if necessary, they also deliver high value and represent the most critical business scenarios a company has to fulfill.
The Business Process Documentation are the elements that are needed to define an actual business process. Documentation types can include: process steps, interfaces, configurations, executables, developments, and alerts. For example, the process step library represents all the business process steps required to operate your business.