Green BPM for your business

Consumers are increasingly aware of the environmental impact of the products they purchase. Therefore, how an organisation manufactures these products, and their environmental impact is an important purchase decision.

According to a survey by a global management consulting firm, 60% of respondents said they would choose and even pay more for products with sustainable packaging. There is also increasing pressure on businesses to reduce their carbon emissions.

This article explains how Green BPM can help businesses reduce their adverse environmental impact by analysing and optimising processes.

What is Green BPM?

Green business process management (Green BPM) aims to lower carbon emissions and other adverse environmental impacts by transforming the business processes rather than focusing only on the final product.
To make the business processes sustainable, Green BPM aims to –

  1. Analyse the resources a business uses to produce an item and assess its environmental impact.
  2. Verify the business's processes at each stage, assess their impact on the environment, and find ways to improve them.

Green BPM analyses each activity within the flow based on a critical component called ‘environmental resource consumption’.

For example, an automobile manufacturer procures and assembles a wide range of components. These include plastics, steel, glass, electronics, electricals, rubber, fabric, etc. A vehicle's assembly comprises many standard processes which consume resources like electricity, heat, water, etc.

Green BPM looks at each of these items, supply chains, and processes to assess their environmental impact and suggests ways to minimise them.

Steps to implement Green BPM

Like any other process management, the Green BPM lifecycle comprises 6 steps. What you do under each of these stages will remain fundamentally the same but will differ across industries –

Step 1 - Planning

The main components of the planning stage are –

  1. Identify areas that need improvement, both internal and external.
  2. Like the key performance indicators (KPIs), you can assign green performance indicators (GPIs) to the factors you want to measure the impact on.
  3. Isolate the processes optimising which will produce the maximum impact and define an action plan.
  4. Understand the tools and software you may need to analyse and work on green BPM.
  5. Identify the roles and responsibilities of the team within the organisation and any external consultant.

For example, a few areas to focus on could be the usage of paper and the amount of business travel. Can you digitise the processes and lower paper usage or encourage online meetings to reduce air travel and hotel stays?

Step 2 – Modelling

Analyse and understand the extent of resource consumption under each of the areas you identify in Step 1. For example, how many units of electricity does your manufacturing plant consume, and can you reduce that by installing energy efficiency and auto sensor lights on the campus?

Another example could be measuring the amount of fuel your vehicles consume. Logistics businesses consume a large amount of fuel which you can reduce by optimising the routes and distribution through IoT and supply chain optimisation technologies.

Rather than just identifying the areas for improvement, we look at actual numbers in the modelling stage.

Step 3 – Simulation

Once you identify the areas and know the exact numbers, it is time to simulate the process improvements. Running a pilot project on a small sample will tell you the effectiveness of the Green BPM plan.

For example, if you want to switch to a cloud business suite to minimise the use of paper and to have a seamless flow of information, consider implementing it in one department first. Test whether it is helping meet the GPIs within one department. Once that is successful, you can scale it up to two departments and eventually the whole organisation.

Step 4 – Execution

Once the sustainability simulation yields desirable results and meets the target GPIs, implement the processes starting with the area that delivers maximum impact.

For example, a supply chain and logistics management system that uses AI, ML, and IoT technologies will significantly optimise the routes. This will lower the delivery times and the fuel your trucks consume.

Step 5 – Monitoring

Once you implement the key process and technology changes, it is time to monitor them and ensure that they meet the GPIs and targets. Some of the areas to monitor include –

  1. Power consumption in kWh.
  2. Carbon emissions from in-house processes and logistics.
  3. Water consumption.
  4. Amount of waste you generate vs. the amount you recycle.
  5. Quantity of raw material you use and any possible reductions.
  6. Reduction in the number of days of business travel.

This is not a comprehensive list of areas to monitor and it may change depending on the nature of your business.

For organisations on the digital transformation journey, agility is key in responding to a rapidly changing technology and business landscape. Now more than ever, it is crucial to deliver and exceed on organisational expectations with a robust digital mindset backed by innovation. Enabling businesses to sense, learn, respond, and evolve like a living organism, will be imperative for business excellence going forward. A comprehensive, yet modular suite of services is doing exactly that. Equipping organisations with intuitive decision-making automatically at scale, actionable insights based on real-time solutions, anytime/anywhere experience, and in-depth data visibility across functions leading to hyper-productivity, Live Enterprise is building connected organisations that are innovating collaboratively for the future.

How can Infosys BPM help?

The proprietary technologies at Infosys BPM assist a wide range of industries in optimising their processes and in digital transformation. Some of the key areas where Infosys BPM helps businesses in Green BPM are –

  1. Sourcing and procurement.
  2. Robotic process automation.
  3. Digital interactive services.
  4. Sales and fulfilment.
  5. Accounts payable on the cloud.

Read more about key bpm service providers at Infosys BPM.

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