Please share with the community what you think needs improvement with IBM BPM.
What are its weaknesses? What would you like to see changed in a future version?
We didn't do a more thorough investigation to figure out which features were missing. We just decided to go with a more programmatical approach.
Some of the features are not enough for my business. We need to build custom user management for the many end users affected by BPM. For IBM BPM, we have half a million users with their own processes in IBM BPM. Currently, we have a lot of processes, and we have a lot of custom groups for the onsite user to look at and run on their groups. When we add a lot of users at the same time to a group, the process admin is not enough for this, and we need to use the custom interface to do it. So, there are some issues with scalability. The cost is higher in comparison to that of Camunda, for example.
From the testing perspective and minor enhancements perspective, customization is something that is a little tedious as compared to new tools. In addition, various open-source tools that are available are not working with IBM BPM. Some of the flows that are developed are end-to-end flows rather than modular flows. With a complex system, such as Customer Due Diligence, there are a lot of reviewers and profiles, and people need to log in and use the same flow again and again, which makes the maintenance of the tool difficult. The security and testing side of things can be improved. If something can be done to make the latest tools and technologies available for doing the testing from the performance side and security side, it would add a lot of value. Currently, it is very difficult to put all of those tools on top of the closed infrastructure of IBM. Some of the new tools, such as Camunda, have solved this a little bit with the security scan that needs to be done in the DevSecOps pipeline that we are using nowadays.
IBM BPM integrated with Spark UI and the UI is now much better, but they still need to improve the UI because competitors have predefined templates and other additional features. In these competitor's solutions, you are able to use the templates, map your data, and the form is ready to use. With this solution, you need to write a lot of code to have the same quality as the competitor's templates. It would be a benefit to make this platform more towards low-code or no-code. The REST web service integration needs to improve by providing other features, such as different security options. In an upcoming release, they should add video calling capabilities to the solution. I work mainly in the Middle Eastern market and many of the bank companies use video Know-Your-Customer (KYC) to call the customer directly from the BPM tool. They do this for customer verification, such as document and identity authentications. Additionally, every organization at some point would like to send out letters to their customers, for example, welcome letters, but there is no easy way to do it with this IBM BPM. There needs to be a template available or an attachable generated PDF document that can be made easily within this solution.
The interface is limited and should improve in the future. We are having to develop an extended application to avoid the limitation in the interface design.
The price and the overall installation process could be improved.
IBM could improve the price. It is far too expensive. It would also be useful to be able to implement the product more quickly. The front end is not customised for a good user experience. It does not have an amicable interface.
The coaches and the user interface are the areas that can be improved a lot. It is good in terms of data processing, but the UI, scripting, and coaches are not very user-friendly and developer-friendly. Performance is always an issue. The scripting and the pattern that it uses are very tedious for new developers to understand, and it takes time to master it in depth. When comparing IBM BPM with IBM APN, a lot of things are provided out of the box in IBM APN. We don't have to write code or a Java connector to make a functionality work. It would be very helpful and time-saving for developers if IBM BPM is improved in this area to provide many functionalities or drag-and-drop options so that the developers don't have to write the code.
We are a government organization, and we are the largest government power sector in India. We generate around 30% of power in India. Therefore, our processes are quite complex. Although IBM BPM is a low-code or no-code software, if you want to have extremely complex workflows, just the business process diagrams are not helpful in creating those workflows. While implementing complex workflows, only the process flow diagrams did not help us. We had to write a lot of Java scripts and Java queries to achieve what we wanted. Its integration capabilities with the SAP environment have to be improved. At present, we are only talking at the web services environment level. Its price also needs to be improved. It is currently expensive. Previously, Active Directory required a heterogeneous environment, but now they want a homogeneous environment. We had onboarded employees through Microsoft Active Directory, and now I have to implement Microsoft AD only from the cloud for my vendors.
You must have good experience to work with it. It is not that easy. Its installation is complex, especially in the new version for business automation, and it could be improved. It has a safety application embedded inside it, and you need to do a lot of configuration to install it. I have been working for two days to resolve an issue.
The issue that we have is with archiving and housekeeping. They don't have a mechanism to achieve processes, data sources, and data. We are currently struggling in this way and would like to get a solution for it. Having a document viewer would be helpful. As it is now, the system requirements are such that reviewing documents is on a single page. The problem is that with business nowadays is that there are too many requirements.
With the new IBM BAW upgrades, it's getting more complex with every release. They are trying to force the consumer or customer to upgrade every time there is an update. Patching is required every three months and a major upgrade every two years, which should be optional. It shouldn't be something that you have to do it, because the current product will be off their support. It causes a lot of grief and inconvenience in that users have to do all the testing again. This is difficult for them. The initial setup should be simplified. Technical support needs improvement. There should be flexibility, and there should be an improvement in customer focus rather than just product focus. Improvement in these areas will be helpful.
Our developers are complaining that it's too complex to maintain. They are struggling to remodel or maintain existing interfaces and integration. I've been through the interfaces but the developers find it difficult to get into the code to maintain it, modify it, and customize it.
IBM BPM lacks openness, that is, the ability to become open for new options in terms of APIs, front-end development, and ecosystem. IBM BPM has been quite closed. One of the main improvements would be to somehow embed the rules engine into IBM BPM. Merging IBM BRMS and the rules engine with IBM BPM would be helpful. If there was some simpler way to define rules without having to put IBM BRMS on top of it, it would be good. It's something that we can get out of Camunda but not out of IBM BPM.
We would like to see this product cloud-native, as the market now is moving to both hybrid cloud and multi-cloud deployments. Being cloud-native helps in moving towards this strategy. We would like to have more flexibility in distributing the workload across different data centers and different locations. IBM BPM needs to be containerized and managed by K8s. IBM has a great chance in this, especially after the acquisition of RedHat. Making the BPM cloud-native will give great capabilities. This is the improvement that should be made to all the current tools as Kubernetes is the defacto standard now.
The debugging needs improvement. There is some confusion surrounding the debugging. They should also improve the APIs.
Finding errors and bugs in the system is not easy. We can't seem to use the events or logs to find them, so it makes it difficult to debug the system. They really need to work on their debugging features to make is much, much easier. It would improve the solution considerably and should be something they add in a future release. The solution is pricey and time-consuming to manage. Technical support needs to be much more helpful. It would be useful if IBM could hold calls to help companies with system learning so we could better wrap our arms around the product.
We place a lot of importance on security and one area they could make improvements in is to definitely increase the vulnerability and security patches to make it more robust and stable. As a financial institution we're always concerned about product and security vulnerabilities, it's an important parameter. The product could be more competitive in terms of cost. In a future release, I'd like to see more business related KPIs that can be measured from a digital transformation perspective. If they could build more on analytics reporting and help businesses to derive more benefits out of the solution that would be beneficial. I think they need to probably make it more business friendly and get more insights based on analytics.
It should have a more powerful and faster form builder, also the license is complex using PVUs.
The simulation feature is great and provides a lot of value, but its complex to use. People need a high level of statistics to use it.
Better integration with other products in the automation suite; easier to integrate with IBM's Operational Decision Manager and content management system.
The business would like to use the product with a lot less IT and equipment involvement.
The user experience, while it has improved, should continue to improve. It should stay on that trajectory. These days, we are all spoiled by applications, like Amazon and Facebook, and stuff we are using in our day-to-day lives. We expect the same experience from enterprise applications as we do from consumer applications. Some of the companies which are leading the charge have minimized the gap of customer experience from consumer to enterprise. IBM and its BPM platform is moving in this direction. It still need to improve, but it's getting there.
BPM has always had this challenge: It had this promise to enable non-technical users, business people. That is an area where we, as a business partner, and other business partners, continue to build new tools that sit on top of BPM, to push that level of engagement further and further out to the business side. That's an area that still needs to be improved. Also, we would like to see integration with artificial intelligence, machine learning-type of technical capabilities. Right now, there are a lot Watson libraries out there. Building those integrations more, out-of-the-box, from IBM would be a good direction.
I would like to see a lot more case studies. I'd like to see a lot more of the partners who've adopted these solutions come forward and demonstrate themselves. We have done this in the past where we had our clients at the IBM Think events interconnect, come forward and say, "This is what we've done with Miracle and IBM," and make that presentation known. I'd like to see a lot more of that available on a case by case basis. I'd like to see a lot more of the partners come forward and talk about how various partners have assisted them rather than just this is what it is and this is what it can do. Nothing like kicking the tires after you've bought it. Understand where the value is.
I would like it more documentation during the design phase. We would appreciate more user-friendly definitions of processes with a more user-friendly interface for documenting processes. Also, the ability to produce process documentation automatically in a readable manner.