Need to make sense of the alphabet soup of acronyms used in the business process outsourcing sector?
Check out our infographic featuring ten of the most often used words and acronyms in our industry.
1. Business Intelligence (BI)
Theories, methods, and technologies (such as software tools) that transform masses of raw data into meaningful and useful information for the business.
2. Business Process Automation (BPA)
The use of computer systems and software for the automation of complex business processes. Processes can be completely automated, or semi-automated (requiring some human intervention for decisions or exception handling.)
3. Business Process Improvement (BPI)
A systematic approach to optimize business processes to achieve better results. Business process improvement, business process redesign, and business process re-engineering are sometimes used interchangeably to describe changes to a business process from incremental change to complete redesign with a goal of measurable improvement.
4. Business Process Management (BPM)
The discipline of managing processes to meet an organization’s strategic goals, establishing systems to measure performance, and systems to educate staff so the processes will be managed effectively. Business process management also is used to describe software systems, often using automation tools, to manage workflows-although it would be more accurate to describe these as business process management systems (BPMS.)
5. Business Process Outsourcing (BPO)
The activity of contracting but business tasks to third-party service providers.
6. Business Process Redesign (BPR)
Focuses on making changes, such as adding business process automation (BPA), to an existing process with a goal of an improved process as well as a continuous improvement after the redesign. The term “business process redesign” is often used interchangeably with “business process re-engineering (BPR.)” However, BPR implies a complete “start-over” of the business process, with a goal of eliminating all non-value added work.
7. Business Process Re-engineering (BPR)
A business management strategy popularized by Michael Hammer with the Harvard Business Review article, “Re-engineering Work: Don’t Automate, Obliterate,” in 1990. BPR focuses on completely rethinking and redesigning business processes from the ground up, to ensure there are no wasteful steps in the process and the latest technology is used effectively.
8. Knowledge Process Outsourcing (KPO)
The outsourcing of business activities that require a high school degree of specialist expertise and advanced analytical and technical skills. Some examples include equity research, intellectual property research, business and market research, and legal, medical and scientific services.
9. Legal Process Outsourcing (LPO)
The outsourcing of legal support services (typically those that don’t require court appearances or face-to-face interaction) to a third-party provider. Common services include documented review, legal research, drafting of pleading or briefs, and parent review.
10. Robotic Process Automation (RPA)
This term is used to describe second-generation business process automation platforms. Providers of technology describe RPA as “software robots” that integrate with legacy business systems to handle mundane, rule-based tasks. Analysts believe RPA could be a major disruptor to the traditional BPO industry because robotic systems can operate at a fraction of the cost of a human and work 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.