Dynamic Business Process Management in the Knowledge Economy

Creating Value from Intellectual Capital

Chapters


Intro


The book “Dynamic BPM in the Knowledge Economy” was primarily written with managers in mind, who in the undergoing changes see opportunities of which they wish to take advantage. For this reason, this is a book on innovations emerging to a larger degree from practice rather than theoretical, academic reflection. It challenges the paradigm of traditional process management, which stems from as far back as industrial engineering (Taylor, 1911), by describing modern process management, which is entirely different from that from 50, 10, or even 5 years ago. Perhaps this sounds suspiciously “non-technical,” but by using the new possibilities offered by developing technologies and IT tools, it is focused on creating conditions for the development of the individual and teams of people through work. This, of course, is not due to the fact that owners and managers in organizations have suddenly become philanthropists, but because during work it is easiest to make natural use of existing tacit knowledge, as well as to create and verify in practice new knowledge arising from employees, teams, or the entire organization. Among the numerous names for methodologies, concepts, and proposals for the direction of developing process management in literature, such as agile, intelligent, adaptive, or human, the name dynamic has been chosen to underline that the actual source of all further possibilities offered by dynamic business process management is the dynamism of the knowledge workers. Not just their knowledge, but also their will to take action determines whether the knowledge workers will introduce agile, intelligent adaptations in the course of performance itself, with a view to raising process efficiency, often in the form of minor adaptations to the specific context of performance. Such adaptations derive from tacit knowledge, as well as the engagement and the will of the knowledge workers, thanks to which new knowledge is created and verified (according to the proverb “necessity is the mother of invention”) in the course of process performance itself. The concept of dynamic business process management does not replace the concept of traditional business process management, as much as it expands it, allowing for the creation of an organization which does not limit or hinder employees in their work, but rather, on which provides the necessary conditions for the broadest possible use of their knowledge and dynamism.

The book discusses differences between the methods and tools of implementing static (structured) and dynamic (semi-structured and unstructured) processes, as well as their consequences. It explains why the extremely disruptive developing technologies, such as robotic process automation (RPA), have limited potential in regard to raising process efficiency by replacing routine human work with faster and error-free work performed by software robots, albeit work limited to repeatable, routine static processes. It explains why, until artificial intelligence (AI) does not in fact become actually intelligent, constant competitive advantage in organizations will only be achievable thanks to the use of the knowledge, intelligence, and engagement of people. This is much harder than implementing e.g. a “paper-free office,” the purchase of an RPA, implementing cloud servers, or undertaking other actions which are beneficial thanks to the simple use of ICT. The dynamic business process management solutions presented in the book are less spectacular, but can be used in the case of any processes, and imbue organizations with a foundation for competitive advantage which is hard to copy – one based on the use of the entire knowledge and dynamism of the employees thanks to the emerging integration of process management and knowledge management, which already at present enables the increasing use of technologies and IT systems allowing for process mining or machine learning (ML).