IT exists in a form of platforms. Bigger organization is – more platforms it uses. In large organizations count of distinct platforms goes on thousands. It is not a result of poor IT planning but an objective reality and diversity of business areas.
Many platforms might look as “legacy”, especially for a newcomer consultant seeking to “optimize” and replace them. However, exactly these legacy platforms typically comprise an essential know-how of business. It is not always easy or reasonable to “optimize” them. Reference paper well illustrates this point.
Successful optimization must always rely on deep analysis of existing platforms yielding essential master data and business rules contained in them. This essential step is often neglected, which always leads to poor results in subsequent refactoring of processes.
Optimization of processes inside platforms is not always easy for technical reasons. BPM has much more potential in organizing efficient workflows and communications between existing platforms, rather than transforming platforms internally or replacing them with ad-hoc innovations.
Mission of BPM is to aggregate knowledge and to improve coordination of isolated platforms based on this accumulated knowledge instead of attempting to replace existing platforms with allegedly superior singular BPM solution or platform.