After lunch at the Toronto OpenText EIM Day, Catharine MacKenzie of the Mutual Fund Dealers Association talked about how they’re using OpenText MBPM (from the Metastorm acquisition). She spoke on an OpenText webinar last year, and I was interested in how they’ve progressed since then.
The MFDA is very process-based, since they’re a regulatory body, and although their policies don’t change that often, the processes used to deal with members and policies are constantly being improved. There was no packaged solution for their regulatory processes, and the need to have process flexibility without a full-on custom solution (which was beyond their budget and IT capabilities) led them to BPM. As I described in the post about the webinar (linked above), they started with four processes including compliance and enforcement, and sped through the implementation of several other processes through 2012. Although during the webinar, she stated that they would be implementing five new processes in 2012, most of that has been pushed to 2013, in part (it appears) because of a platform upgrade to MBPM 9.
She pointed out that everyone in MFDA is using BPM for internal administrative processes, such as booking time off, as well as for the member-facing processes; for many of these processes, the users don’t even know that they’re using BPM. They’re also an OpenText eDocs customer, so can present content within processes, although apparently they have had to do a lot of that integration work themselves.
As for benefits, they’re seeing a huge decrease in development and deployment time compared to custom applications that they build in Visual Studio, with process versioning and auditing built in. They’ve had challenges around having the business own the processes, rather than IT, while maintaining good process design and disciplined testing; the MBPM upgrade and migration is also taking longer than expected, hence is delaying some of their planned process implementations. This is an interesting result, against the backdrop of this morning’s customer keynote talking about major system upgrades: an upgrade that requires data migration and custom application refactoring is almost always going to cause delays in a previously-defined schedule of roll-outs, but very necessary for setting the stage for future functionality.
I’m skipping out for the rest of the afternoon to get back to my desk, but this has been a good opportunity to get caught up on the entire OpenText product suite and talk to some of their local customers.
Disclosure: OpenText is a customer, for whom I recently did a webinar and related white paper, but I am not paid to be here today, nor for writing any of these blog posts.