The Missing Links in Back-Office Business Process Management
By Donna Fluss
Contact centers and back-office departments are two of the most people-intensive functions in enterprises. Due to their large number of employees and related expenses, these departments are rightfully capturing the attention of executives and chief financial officers looking for ways to reduce operating costs and risk. The problem is that though great effort has been dedicated to optimizing the performance of contact center agents during the past 15 years, little has been done to address the back-office staff challenge. According to DMG Consulting LLC research, there are approximately 3 times more back-office employees than contact center agents in the US. Executives are justifiably concerned, as back-office departments remain people-intensive and lack the technology to optimize staff performance and the overall customer experience.
Business process management (BPM) solutions have been used in back offices for years. These solutions provide a framework and tools for automating back-office (and many other types of) activities. They concentrate on automating workflow – the movement of work from one activity to the next – not on optimizing staff performance, productivity and quality.