Medforce Blog

Pre-Fab versus Platform

Choosing the right BPM system

December 18, 2015

Category: General

When it comes to business process management, there are generally two ways to implement a workflow management solution. You can bring on a platform that allows you to custom build the framework for your operation, or you can select a preconfigured solution that is built from the developer’s knowledge of the industry.

Let’s explore the pros and cons of each.

PreFab Workflows

Most often these are built into software that has a primary focus, such as billing or accounting, as an add-on assisting you in to use that particular application more efficiently.

Pros:

  • Near-instant implementation – in most cases, you simply have to “turn on”
  • Inexpensive in the short term – usually the upfront costs are minimal

Cons:

  • Rigid – you have to go back to the software developer to make changes, which may cost money
  • Built for the lowest common denominator - the developer decides what your process will be
  • Designed by people without BPM expertise – usually developed as an add-on to software with a different focus.
  • Short menu – typically these add-on workflows number 5, 10 or maybe a dozen, when your organization could have hundreds of processes.
  • Works only for the product in which it was designed

 

Workflow Platform

A true BPM application is a set of tools that allows you to map, refine, optimize and monitor your business operations.

Pros:

  • Flexible and customizable – you build exactly what you need
  • Easy to update – as you view your dashboards and reports, areas for improved efficiency will rise to the top
  • Scalable  - as new processes come up or additional departments need help, the platform can quickly grow.
  • Interoperable – communicates with other business applications
  • ROI – long term, your bottom line will grow at a faster rate

Cons:

  • More expensive up front
  • More extensive training required to use to its full extent

 

The decision to go with PreFab versus a Platform solution usually comes down to upfront costs. You need to carefully weigh your cash flow concerns with your strategic vision for what you’d like the process management solution to deliver for your organization in both the short and long term. In most cases, you get what you pay for. 

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