50 shades of confusion: BPM vs. workflow software

Understanding the difference between workflow optimization and business process automation is important in pinpointing the right software for your organization. The differences between these two types of software are often poorly understood, even by IT professionals.

The major difference is that BPM encompasses much more in terms of facilitating activities of an organization while workflow directs activities between individuals. BPM is an entire series of different functions that can be addressed apart from specific applications. BPM not only handles workflow processes but is also capable of creating them through its capacity to model and optimize workflow.

BPM and workflow are similar in that both are responsible for maximizing operational efficiency by automating core processes. An important aspect of both BPM and workflow is eliminating bottlenecks from core processes that hinder progress in carrying out necessary activities.




Organizations use workflow to automate business processes, but workflow management software does not test whether automated models maximize efficiency or even get tasks done adequately. Rather, this solution will send documents and assignments to a particular user. It keeps track of files and makes sure projects are completed on time. Overall, workflow maps out processes and facilitates their completion.


Business Project Management


BPM software goes much further in facilitating organizational processes than pure workflow software. In fact, workflow features are only one of about 10 different features offered in a BPM software package. While BPM software may handle the tasks addressed by workflow solutions, it enhances workflow processes by adding modeling and optimization features to the automation and management of business processes offered by simpler workflow software.

BPM software will integrate itself with diverse systems, various business rules, recipients, templates, and data at an organization, carrying out tasks such as modeling processes, creating an integrated business rules engine and forms designer, simulating processes, optimizing methodologies, and monitoring and reporting on organizational activities.

BPM workflow software offers a more holistic approach to handling business processes. The solution takes into account all resources used, including people, data, machines, and systems. This contrasts with workflow management technologies, which generally only address the interactions between individuals and software. While BPM software handles workflow tasks, it does this in a fundamentally different way than workflow tools, seamlessly integrating workflow tasks with many other technologies, such as BAM, UI generation, and an environment that offers graphical authoring.


PerfectForms software offerings


PerfectForms offers both workflow management software and BPM workflow software. While there is some overlap between the functions, these two different software programs offer different focuses and capabilities.


PerfectForms workflow software:

  • Streamlines workflow processes
  • Carries out tasks such as automation, web form design, and real-time reporting
  • Can be used to carry out business processes in many different types of organization departments, including human resources, marketing, sales, and more

PerfectForms BPM software:

  • Offers flexibility to accommodate organizations operating in a wide variety of industries
  • Improves business processes through modeling, automation, and optimization
  • Can be tailored to meet the unique needs of an organization thanks to the option to custom-create applications


Determining your software needs


Now that you understand the difference between workflow and BPM software, you can determine which solution is the best fit for your organization. Once you implement the software that’s right for you, your company will go from 50 shades of confused to humming with efficiency in no time.

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