Not a new concept
Bimodal IT is certainly not a new concept, but it is even more important today, as enterprises must continue to manage the operational core of a business and also allow discovery and innovation. In fact, Gartner forecasts “75 percent of IT organizations will be bimodal in some way by 2017.” Business process management software and platforms are vital to maximizing the efficiency and effectiveness of both modes as well as integrating them seamlessly.
As they are often described, Mode 1 is the legacy IT system , which is linear and sequential and with workflow processes for production, finance, and HR, for example. Although Mode 1 is obviously essential to the success of any business, it is not directly responsible for developing new profit centers and finding new ways to engage with customers.
The Mode 2 is where intuition takes flight in a non-linear manner , helping the business advance, and supporting those teams that are tasked with growing the business. As new technologies, such as the cloud, the Internet of Things (iOT) and mobile, are introduced and adopted into the mainstream, another set of business management processes are required to give mode 2 project teams greater flexibility. Businesses are then able to respond with lightning speed to the marketplace and take advantage of trends before they become trends.
Value in both modes
Mode 1 IT projects have traditionally been internally driven, as the sales, finance or HR department requests a new system or operational aid. Changing and/or improving business process management template designs and documentation are typically required to fulfill the request successfully and allow the people in those departments to operate the new system and make it a value proposition for the enterprise.
Conversely, Mode 2 projects are not always as well defined and structured as Mode 1 projects. Often, employees directly responsible for growing the business are working with the kernel of an idea and/or reacting to new competitive and customer pressures. They must be able to create solutions in a more dynamic environment that is evolving in real time. Business process management modeling and platforms must be equally agile, providing these employees with a clear, effective path to the targeted outcome.
A place for both
The documentation associated with the financial and insurance industries is a good example. Mode 1 IT is built for recording and storing insurance premium payments and claims reports and reimbursements as well as individual and business financial account activities and all the associated data. Businesses in these sectors must be excellent record keepers and have proven business process management software and documentation for relatively repetitious operations.
At the point where financial institutions and insurance companies interact with customers, they must be innovative to respond to and, better yet anticipate, the services and functions that their customers expect – and very quickly. Insurance quotes must be available instantaneously. Mobile banking apps must allow for the photographing of checks and uploading them for deposit anytime and anyplace. Consumers want to leave their debit or credit cards in their pockets and make in-store transactions with Apple Pay or similar apps. A different set of business process design templates and notation is required, so these customer-facing capabilities operate flawlessly. Simultaneously, the business process management software for these Mode 2 projects must be integrated with the Mode 1 processes because all the data these advanced services generate are also records that the business must store, maintain and make available throughout the enterprise.
Automation plays a role
Another business process management factor at play here is automation. Operating in both modes separately, but also in an integrated manner is requiring organizations to reassess their workload automation. Business process management software and platforms are evolving to allow organizations to replace outmoded isolated automated systems with enterprise-wide automation solutions. For Mode 2, BPM modeling frees personnel from a standardized change management process and creates a dynamic environment where innovation is continuous and allows for a more flexible automation strategy. There may be an element of chance, but it’s offset by quicker and more effective responses to market conditions and customer demands.
Navvia has long been conscious of the value of bimodal IT and has developed its business process management software to be the highly effective tool enterprises need to operate in both modes, efficiently and successfully.