Tools

The Best BPM Tools & Process Analysis Tools To Try in 2020

By 30/10/2019 No Comments

This article will help you quickly compare and evaluate the best business process management tools and other process management software.

These tools are used in many settings. In project management, specifically, project managers can use BPM tools to help map out workflows and visualize processes that you use in your teams.

In this post, I’ll break down what business process management (BPM) is and what tools we can use to better analyse and automate different systems. I’ll share with you some of my favorite BPM apps and highlight why/how each stands out.

Additionally, I will answer some FAQs about BPM and adjacent processes. I will explain what process modelling software can do for you, outline my evaluation criteria for any BPM software, and provide a simple comparison of business process management tools.

Quickly Compare & Evaluate The 10 Best BPM Tools

 

The Best BPM Tools & Process Analysis Tools Logo Soup imageBusiness process documentation is meant to give you a complete view of the systems that make up, support, and control your business. This may include processes like manufacturing and distribution, HR and employee satisfaction, finances and payroll, web design and software upkeep, customer service systems, and more.

Every business is made up of many, many moving parts. Taking stock of all the moving parts and doing your best to improve and automate some of them is the primary goal of BPM and BPA tools. Process models software can help you do just this. Read on to find out how.

The Best BPM Tools List

Here’s a shortlist of the best business process manager tools:

  1. Monday.com
  2. Favro
  3. ProcessPlan
  4. Ultradox
  5. Engage Process
  6. ProcessMaker
  7. Kissflow
  8. Bizagi
  9. Pipefy
  10. Pega
Jump to Best BMP tools overviews

Business Process Automation FAQ

Have some questions about business process automation and the tools we use for BPM? I address some commonly asked questions below.

What is BPM?

Business Process Management (BPM) is a means to improve and automate any number of business processes. Business processes may be managed through software designed to streamline BPM, through operations management intervention, or any number of other methods.

What are some types of business processes?

Types of business processes include anything from manufacturing processes, banking and finance, HR processes like hiring or employee reviews, health care processes and/or emergency products and services, public sector, compliance and auditing, travel booking or agent liaison, and so on.

What’s the difference between BPO and BPM?

Business Process Management (BPM) is internal strategies and automations for navigating a range of business processes and is often carried out directly by internal management. Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) manages business processes with the help of a third-party or several third-party sources. This may include an external HR department, for example, or an overseas call center for customer service management.

What is business process modelling?

Business process modeling is representing all the business process, often visually in a graph or chart, in order to survey, improve, and automate the current systems.

What is business process analysis?

Business Process Analysis (BPA) seeks to plot, view, and understand the current web of business processes within an organization in order to develop ways to improve operational effectiveness. BPA is a way to state and record business processes so that they can be understood, improved upon, and examined.

Looking for something similar to BPM software today? Check out my other reviews:

  1. Boost your team’s efficiency with the Best Workflow Management Software of 2019.
  2. Looking for deeper data analysis and business intelligence information that can help you make your next big move? Try the Best Business Intelligence Tools of 2019.
  3. Resource management getting out of hand while you have so many processes and systems on the go? Try these 10 Best Resource Management Software & Tools of 2019.

BPM Apps Comparison Criteria

What are we looking for when we select process mapping tools for review? Here’s a summary of my evaluation criteria:

  1. User Interface (UI): Is it clean and attractive? Does the UX look and feel contemporary or antiquated?
  2. Usability: Is it easy to learn and master? Does the company offer good tech support, user support, tutorials, and training?
  3. Features & Functionality:
    – Robust BPM Database: Do they have a powerful way to sort, store, organize, and search a BPM database of processes, procedures, and systems? Is it easy to add, remove, and edit processes stored in the database? Can you control permissions on different entries? Do they offer a process checklist?
    – BPM Accounting & Financials: Do they offer solutions for navigating finances, budgets, invoices, billing, and other monetary processes? Are their solutions secure, reliable, and adequately customizable?
    – Process Description Capture: Do the tools provide ways to explain process descriptions beyond text (like attachments, visual/presentation elements, videos)? Is it easy to update descriptions and notify those affected?
    – Coding Specifications: How much, if any, complex coding is required for the software to be fully customizable and fully functionable. Are there low code options for non-technical users? Are their complex features open for customization by programmers?
  4. Integrations: Is it easy to connect with other tools? Any pre-built integrations? Can it import documents from other software? Can it export documents in a variety of formats?
  5. Value for $: How appropriate is the price for the features, capabilities, and use case? Is pricing clear, transparent and flexible? Do they offer any try-before-you-buy options?

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Overviews Of The Business Process Management Tools Software

 

bpm tools featured image

Here’s a brief description of each of the business process automation tools that are featured on this top 10 list.

1. Monday.comAward-winning, visually intuitive tool for managing and automating your business process with ease.

monday.com is a great BPM tool because of the way it has done away with a lot of the trimmings of typical management tools and focused on simple, visually intuitive layouts that help clarify the sequence of work.

monday.com’s features for managing projects include resource and project management, time tracking, collaboration, and reporting features. For example, users can upload and attach files to cards, make comments, mention teammates, and more. It also offers a great project reporting dashboard that can collect data from multiple boards, allowing better tracking abilities of progress. And while monday.com doesn’t offer a complete set of tools for project accounting and invoicing solution as other tools, you can use monday.com to track hours, timelines, and invoices.

monday screenshot - workflow management software

Plan and execute projects in one centralized place.

Overall, it’s a highly customizable tool that lets you work in whatever methodology—kanban or otherwise—that fits your project and team. You’ll also find some useful workflow tools for automating parts of your process.

monday.com’s integrations include project management apps like Slack, Google Drive, Gmail, Google Calendar, Jira, GitHub, Trello, Dropbox, Typeform and many more, accessible via Zapier.

monday.com costs from $17/month for two users.

2. FavroPopular planning and collaboration app for organizational flow used by over 1,000 companies.

Favro screenshot image

Collections of processes, a kanban workboard, and tracking features make Favro a BPM favorite.

Favro was founded by serial deeptech entrepreneurs Hans Dahlström, Erik Olofsson, and Patric Palm and has employees based out of Sweden, Vietnam, and North America. Visualize work and switch view between kanban, timelines and sheets; iterate and collaborate on process boards and cards; build rules to automate, with an assortment of customizable fields; and more.

Favro scored highly in the Integration segment of the evaluation criteria because not only does it have a lot of app integration options (see below) but the integration processes is straight-forward and seamless.

Favro can integrate with over 1500 apps through a paid Zapier plan. Options include Slack, Gmail, Google Calendar, Google Sheets, Trello, Typeform, Bitbucket, Google Forms, Todist, and more.

A slight critique is the structuring of tasks and subtasks. The more subtasks you add on, the more unruly the software becomes. Favro could definitely benefit from overhauling their tool structuring system.

Favro starts at $13.60/month for up to 2 users and offers a 14-day free trial.

3. ProcessPlanCloud-based business process management tool that works with any OS focused on providing orgs with comprehensive oversight.

ProcessPlan screenshot image

Current tasks, processes, reports, and navigation are front and center on the ProcessPlan dashboard.

ProcessPlan is an intuitive, easy-to-use business process manager that also offers process outsourcing with their ProcessPeople app. Noteworthy features of ProcessPlan include: unlimited concurrent running processes; automated emails, actions, emails, and decisions; account and process branding; milestone reports for sharing progress with customers; and more.

ProcessPlan is very feature-rich and has a freemium version of the software to boot. Hence, it rated highly in both the Features and Functions category of our evaluation criteria as well as the Value for Cost section.

Integrations include MySQL, Microsoft SQL Server, Agile CRM, Magneto, Rest API, Amazon Web Services, Kipfolio, Gmail, Zendesk, Infusionsoft, Webhooks, MailChimp, Google Drive, Survey Monkey, Office 365, Slack, Microsoft Dynamics CRM, Hubspot, DropBox, and plenty more.Additional apps can be integrated through a paid Zapier plan.

ProcessPlan’s major weakness is their lack of data forms capability and their inability to segment and zoom in on data chunks for analysis. The latter, in particular, can be “fixed” with integrations like Airtable.

ProcessPlan starts at $12/user/month and offers a 14-day free trial and demo.

4. Ultradox Software to create your own enterprise apps without developers, with easy Google account sign-in, Gmail integration, and Google Doc compatibility.

Ultradox screenshot image

Ultradox easily meshes with all the Google software and tools you are probably using anyways.

Developed and owned by Floresoft, Ultradox is part of a Google-centric collection of software for teams already using G Suite products in their day-to-day. Ultradox features include: automating tedious tasks; the ability to create your own enterprise apps sans-developer; merge, send and print documents, generate websites or send out responsive emails as part of your process; and more.

Ultradox has a thorough and helpful selection of guides, references, and samples, which scored it favorably in the Usability evaluation criteria section. They also have a robust customer service platform that includes an online help center, FAQ, a community forum, enterprise support, bug reporting, and feedback service.

Ultradox integrates with the full Google Suite platform. You can also use Ultradox with Zapier to integrate with over 1000 apps; however, the Ultradox app for Zapier is still in beta stage so you will have to add the app to your Zapier account manually.

Ultradox lost some points in our evaluation criteria for Value for Cost, as certain functions require spending “credits” on top of what you are already paying monthly. There are plenty of free executions and a certain number of credits are included in each plan at no additional cost, but it’s just another thing to have to keep track of.

Ultradox starts at $32.10/month for a single user plan and they have a freemium version of the software if you prefer.

5. Engage ProcessDrag-and-drop process mapping and automatic updates to collaboratively map, calculate, and compare your business processes.

Engage Process screenshot image

The embedded process logic engine automatically structures your processes and checks their logic.

With head offices in The Netherlands and the United Kingdom, Engage Process’s self-directed mandate is to simply process improvement. Features of the app include: easy to understand icon based visual mapping; automated, drag-and-drop process mapping with logic check; the ability to create reports and overviews tailored to a specific target audience; and more.

Visualization, customization, and deployment are made very easy with the clean UX and intuitive navigation. Engage Process scored highly in both UX and Usability because of this ease-of-use.

Engage Process integrates with Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Powerpoint, Microsoft Word and supports Android, iPhone, and iPad devices. No other integration information was made available.

One critique is that Engage Process could use some additional reporting features. For example, reports on what users have completed what tasks. A wider variety of template-based reports, sans manual interference, would be beneficial to customers.

Engage Process starts at $70.84/month for their Professional Modeler product and they offer a 30-day free trial.

6. ProcessMakerFull workflow content automation platform with an intuitive interface and the ability to integrate with numerous ERP, CRM, and HR apps.

ProcessMaker screenshot image

An intuitive, drag-and-drop interface for business analysts to model approval-based workflows.

ProcessMaker was named a High Performer and Leader by G2 Crowd for multiple seasons in a row. This app works with your legacy software to automate and improve business processes. Features include a web-based drag-and-drop BPMN 2.0 process modeling tool; definable variables for fields in forms; responsive forms that auto adjust for different screens; and more.

ProcessMaker is a very feature-rich application so it scored highly in the Features and Functions category of the evaluation criteria. They have a solid wiki page to help you find what you need and implement it.

Integrations include AdobeSign, DocuSign, G Suite apps, LumApps, and more. REST APIs can be used by developers that want to integrate ProcessMaker with other standalone or web applications, as well.

One con of the software is that knowledge of coding and programming, PHP and JavaScript for example, are required to take advantage of all the features and potential that the app has to offer. This may be a barrier for entry to some.

Process Maker starts at $1500/month and offers a free trial and demo.

7. Kissflow – Easy visual process elements, customizable forms, and robust access control used by over 10,000 customers, including Pepsi, Sega, and Comcast.

Kissflow screenshot image

Easy-to-customize forms let you tweak everything from form layouts to elements and data sources.

Used by Dominos, The Telegraph, Pepsi, Sears, Comcast, and Hubspot, Kissflow is a digital workplace app with no-code process management functions that easily adapt to any industry environment. Features include easy-to-use interface, user and data scalability, real-time analytics, and more than 50 ready-to-use apps like Travel Reimbursements and Employee Onboarding.

Kissflow scored highly in Features and Functions because they are a viable no-code option for all of your business process management needs, including automated processes, project board building, case flow handling, and collaboration tools.

Integrations include G suite, DropBox, Docusign, Webmerge, Salesforce, Oracle, and more.

One con of Kissflow is that the application is internet-access dependant, meaning there is no way to use the software offline, which may be inconvenient for some (like users with inconsistent internet service).

Kissflow starts at $149/month for up to 30 users and offers a 7-day free trial.

8. BizagiDeep and complex process automation software that can be customized for a range of complex and simple enterprise-wide processes.

Bizagi screenshot image

Define labels/descriptions, select gateways, embed sub-processes, add tasks, events and more.

Bizagi’s first project was developing a Scala ERP system for Apple in 1989 and they have been trucking along ever since. The Bizagi Business Process Modeller has over 1,000,000 users worldwide and offers collaboration on process modeling, revision history, drag-and-drop environment, suggestions for various next-best actions based on artificial intelligence; and more.

Bizagi has a great focus on BPM standards, which gives it a unique advantage in terms of the Usability evaluation criteria in that it actively makes the user more aware of best practices as they work.

Bizagi offers options for RPA Integration, SAP Integration, SharePoint Integration, and ECM Integration. Additionally, they can connect to corporate email via SMTP and company directories through LDAP authentication.

While Bizagi works well for a lot of things, large or complex processes can bog the system down and cause the program to use up a lot of RAM. Large scale and sprawling processes may make the app sluggish or even require a restart.

Bizagi starts at $8/user/month and has a freemium version of their different tools available for download (Modeler, Studio, and Automation Server).

9. Pipefy – Enterprise solution designed to build and implement complex processes and connect processes across departments.

Pipefy screenshot image

Automation works according to an event > action logic: when event X happens, action Y will occur.

Founded in 2015 by Alessio Alionço, a former mergers and acquisitions consultant, Pipify is a lean management platform with technology that allows you to streamline and automate any business process. Features include automatically triggering actions using event > action logic, automated company emails, integration of company processes; and more.

Pipefy is a stand-out choice in the Value for Cost evaluation criteria, as they offer a freemium version for up to 10 users and then a modest per-user-per-month fee compared to others on this list. Smaller, budget-conscious groups will benefit from this very fair price scheme.

Pipefy offers Native App Integrations, API Integrations, and Zapier Integrations. Enable native apps like Slack, GitHub, GitLab, BitBucket, Appear.in and Google Hangouts in Pipefy. Build your own integrations with their public API that uses flexible GraphQL data query language. Or, integrate with hundreds of apps via Zapier.

The number of notifications (before customization) was a major con upon first using the app. However, this was easily rectified.

Pipefy starts at $9/user/month and offers a freemium version for up to 10 users.

10. PegaAward-winning case management and BPM to orchestrate work from end-to-end with case management and streamline operations.

Pega screenshot image

A comprehensive BPM suite that combines RPA and BPM in a single, unified platform.

With 38 locations across Asia, Europe, and North America, Pega has a 35-year legacy of software development. Their BPM and Case Management applications let you orchestrate your workflow, automate with bots, make decisions with rules and AI, and deliver channel-less experiences. Pega enables development through visual tools, all with little to no coding.

Pega has outstanding no- or low-code flexibility to adapt to business process needs. Hence, they scored well in UI and Usability within the evaluation criteria, as Pega is intuitive to use and easy to modify to your needs.

Integrations include DocuSign, Salesforce, Cisco, and more. You can also connect to channels and front-end technologies you are already using, like React and Angular. Or, open UI APIs power web and mobile front ends with Pega’s REST-enabled service.

Pega is quite costly compared to other options on the market, which is a minor con to adapting the software in your own business process management.

Pega $200/month and offers a 30-day free trial.

Other BPM Apps Options

Here’s a few more that didn’t make the top list. If you need additional suggestions for business process automation, check these out.

  1. Metatask – Easy-to-grasp workflow manager tool to help your team perform the same tasks consistently.
  2. Mavim – Visualize your processes automatically and explain the flow of work across the organization to business users with PowerPoint-like visuals.
  3. Flowfinity – Automate any business process with point-and-click tools, not code, and create custom apps that let users complete mobile forms and workflows from anywhere.
  4. Gluu – Central authentication and authorization for web and mobile applications; open source IAM supplying open source BPM capabilities.
  5. OnTask – Collect data quickly and accurately with mobile-responsive web forms and and flow it through to other forms and systems automatically to save time.
  6. Tonkean – Create smart bots to automate any workflow, connect data from over 1000 systems, coordinate people intelligently with proactive follow-up, and more.
  7. Flokzu – Low-code BPM Suite with a simple drag-and-drop interface designed to combine tasks, deadlines, time management, business rules and more.
  8. Tallyfy – Integration-friendly tool that lets you document and track all your playbooks, recurring processes, know-how, SOP’s and forms.
  9. Orchestly – Code-free workflow management software to automate, manage, and optimize your business workflows.
  10. FlowForma – FlowForma offers workflow automation tools that provide business experts with low entry costs and rapid process development.
  11. ProntoForms – Low-code app development platform that will let you build and deploy enterprise-grade mobile forms quickly and easily.

What Do You Think About These BPM Tools?

What list of business processes do you require your BPM app to cover? Do any of the above fit your qualifications? Is there another software you would pick instead? Let us know in the comments.

Ben Aston

About Ben Aston

I’m Ben Aston, a digital project manager and founder of thedigitalprojectmanager.com. I've been in the industry for more than 15 years working in the UK at London’s top digital agencies including Dare, Wunderman, Lowe and DDB. I’ve delivered everything from film to CMS', games to advertising and eCRM to eCommerce sites. I’ve been fortunate enough to work across a wide range of great clients; automotive brands including Land Rover, Volkswagen and Honda; Utility brands including BT, British Gas and Exxon, FMCG brands such as Unilever, and consumer electronics brands including Sony.

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