This week, I had the opportunity to take my first Business Process Management course from SAP – the accelerated/consolidated course TBPM10, which I happened to take via a virtual classroom. According to the SAP Education site, TBPM10 (generically titled “Business Process Management”) consolidates the BPM300 Business Process Management Governance Overview, BPM100 Business Process Management Methodology and BPM130 SAP Business Process Architect by IDS Scheer courses, and is a preparatory course for taking the BPX Associate Certification exam. The three courses, if taken separately, add up to 7 days of training, so needless to say it was a jammed-packed 5 days this week. I should mention that the BPM100 course materials were replaced by an updated course ASA380.
I must say that at this point, I am fairly overwhelmed with the vast amount of material we covered this week. A grand total of 790 PowerPoint slides were covered as part of this course, 99% of which contained new information for me and I’d estimate that about 85-90% of the slides were not duplicated (some slides are used in each of the three courses covered). Most of the time was spent listening to and interacting with our instructor (as well as some interaction between attendees), but there were some exercises sprinkled in as well.
We covered a wealth of topics this week, but I’ll highlight a couple that stood out to me:
BPM Strategy and Governance Framework: We walked through the four steps: Strategy, Set Up, Transition and Continuous Improvement in great detail. We also talked about building a process centric IT organization, communication and training and change management. This was the focus of the first two days and represented BPM300 materials.
ASAP Methodology and Business Add-Ons: We covered the BPM Business Process Scanning add-on, which we spent a lot of time on Calibration and As-Is Analysis of processes. We also talked a lot about the ASAP methodology and how to apply business process management techniques, enabled through Solution Manager, to start implementations off on the right foot. This accounted for about was about a day and a half of course time.
ARIS, Netweaver BPM and SAP Process Modeling Handbook: The last day and a half was spent on the ARIS product suite and its capabilities. We got to spend a little bit of time in the ARIS mapping tool itself, got to see a couple video demos which focused on how all of the tools in the ARIS suite work together as well as with SAP’s Solution Manager, Enterprise Service Repository and Netweaver Business Process Management product.
My takeaways are plentiful, but if I had to narrow down to just a one thing, I would say that I wish that we had taken advantage of the capabilities of Solution Manager (and to a somewhat lesser extent its integration with ARIS) before beginning our implementation of SAP as I feel we definitely would be in a better position than we are today. Had we used Solution Manager to map out our processes, stored our key documentation that supported our configuration and, more importantly the reasons why we configured the way we did, I think we’d be in a much better position to upgrade our system in the future.
I would highly recommend taking this course to anyone who’s interested in Business Process Management or thinking of starting a BPM initiative. The course was well delivered, even in a virtual setting – which could have spelled disaster since the bulk of the time was spent listening to the instructor. I felt that the material covered kept me very interested, the pace of the course was good and that the instructor did a great job keeping everyone engaged.
I need to spend the weekend (and maybe more time) wrapping my head around all of this information that I absorbed (or tried to) this week. Then, I’ll begin studying for the BPX Associate Certification Exam by reading through this behemoth of a book called this week’s training materials.