Friday, July 03, 2015

Legacy: Paper Processes

Oh how we love paper and the processes associated with it. Paper is easy, its familiar and most of what's been done before was with paper. The problem is that things are changing. People don't use as much paper as they used to. Paper processes are still used in many, many industries and they don't want to change.

Systems of Record is a fancy way to refer to paper processes. On the other side there are Systems of Engagement, this would be an app. When it comes to Business Process Management (BPM), apps must replace paper. This is where change management comes into play. Users don't want to change and neither does management. Users won't change because it'll be something different and more difficult than what they do now. Management doesn't want to change because they perceive it'll affect the bottom line. My reply to those statements is, how much will it cost not to change? If we don't offer an app, if we don't have robust digital systems that replace paper then what? What do you tell a client when they ask what is the name of your app or is your app available for free?

How does an organization navigate the difficult path from Systems of Record to Systems of Engagement? It'll take strong leadership from the very top pushing change. Steve Jobs is a prime example of that type of leadership. From the top leadership must tell the rest of the organization, this is the way that things will be done. If you don't do things this way, you'll answer to me (and maybe not even have a job, someone might be fired an example to others). Either do things the way they should be done or leave. There will be difficulties and maybe even a step back but going digital means you'll take several steps forward and be positioned for the future.

The phrase lead, follow or get out of the way comes to mind.

- Rob

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