What is an enterprise management system? 

An enterprise management system consolidates traditionally separated management systems into one single source of truth to ensure business process transformation initiatives run smoothly and lead to long term operational excellence. In addition to building a new strategic vision and a clear operating approach that defines how you want to run your business in the future, an enterprise management system enables you to create a unified strategy for full organizational excellence.  

What are the different functions of an enterprise management system?

As a single source of truth, an enterprise management system supports the transform-optimize-control cycle that is essential to combine business models with operational excellence. The centralized process repository is positioned at the heart of an organization and feeds daily business, transformation projects and programs with the right information, at the right time and with at the right level of detail, providing a baseline for continuous improvement. 

  • It supports your transformation initiatives all the way from strategy to operations.  
  • It enables operational excellence and continuous improvement.
  • It ensures you are in control and complying with regulations and mitigating risk. 
  • It allows you to find and fix differences between planned and executed processes before they blow up your bottom line. 

What are typical features of an enterprise management system?

Flexible design

State-of-the-art modeling and collaboration fasten the design of processes, risk, policies and IT and help to design operations and quickly respond to change. With an enterprise management system powered by ARIS, organizations can design their business in a rich modeling environment and choose freely from numerous notations or standards such as BPMN 2.0, EPC, DMN, and others. 

Efficient roll-out 

With an enterprise management system, operating procedures and policies can be rolled out organization-wide in a shared, single source of truth based on automated process governance and digital confirmation management. It enables you to manage and govern daily operations while including all relevant stakeholders in the automated processes. 

Engaged people

An enterprise management system provides quick, convenient access to information with role-based views for different users. This enables you to roll-out organizational and business-critical information to employees, and to manage and share process-relevant content directly, for optimal transparency and communication that keeps everyone on the same page. Unlock the power of collaborative process improvement by empowering anyone, anytime, anywhere to collaborate.   

Continuous improvement

An enterprise management system enables you to discover, measure and analyze your business to continuously improve your process performance. You can create powerful visualizations of reliable data analytics to improve transparency.  

End-to-end insights 

With an enterprise management system, you can align your organization end-to-end to gain greater visibility into your operations—and enable impactful, future-proof business decisions.   

Integrate risk management and secure compliance 

An enterprise management system enables a process-focused approach to building, implementing, and operating an enterprise-wide compliance and risk management system. Identify and document risk, meet core regulations, manage incidents and loss, conduct enterprise audits, and confirm new procedures to protect and preserve your company integrity.   

Continuous monitoring and analysis 

Get a 360-degree view of your operations (e.g., supply chain, customer service, IoT, or any other business area) and gain in-depth business insights to find patterns, anomalies and opportunities for improvement.  Easy-to-understand dashboards allow stakeholders to visualize process information and key performance indicators in no time. 

FIgure 1: An enterprise management system supports process excellence over six phases of business analysis and operations

Business challenges that can be solved with an enterprise management system 

  • Barriers to executing continuous improvement cycles
    • Lack of transparency into how processes are executed
    • Structural process flaws that negatively affect outcomes
    • Misalignment of process participants on improvements, including required changes and change impact and change rollout
    • Misalignment of process participants due to different understandings about the ‘way of working’
    • Growing complexity through increase of customer and regulatory requirements 
  • Missing a holistic view of process aspects including risk & controls, security, business continuity, and sustainability
  • Functional segregation and siloed working without a common focus on outcomes
  • Lack of clear definition of functional services, interfaces, roles and responsibilities
  • Growing cost base due to increasing amount of regional process variants, accelerated by increase in usage of SaaS solutions 
  • Missing internal control system to strengthen business continuity management and to improve resilience
  • Lack of insights into ​the reality of daily business operations to detect bottlenecks and derived measures before they impact the bottom line 

Benefits of an enterprise management system: How to reach operational excellence 

  • Align your business vision (how to win in the market) with your operating vision (how you run your business) to be successful in re-imagining and transforming your entire organization.
  • Get full visibility into your daily operations (360° view on your process data and their dependencies) to find patterns, anomalies, and opportunities for improvement—and be able to make impactful, future proof business decisions
  • Overcome siloes and optimize processes along the user journeys with end-to-end value creation processes
  • Roll out your operating procedures and policies organization-wide in a shared, single source of truth based on automated process governance—anyone, anywhere, anytime, can contribute to your transformation
  • Measure how your processes execute, understand how this differs from plans, and fix any discrepancies—before they impact your bottom line

Why are enterprise management systems important?

External factors such as market turmoil, inflation and widespread supply chain disruptions are currently forcing many companies to strengthen their business transformation initiatives. But many transformation initiatives are failing because the business is unable to set up a continuous optimization cycle, and because employees don’t understand the ‘way of working’. To be successful, organizations need to be mission-driven. They need ways to translate their strategy into an operating model to achieve high operational excellence, even when changing their business model, in a short time.   

With an adaptive enterprise management system, businesses can align their organization end-to-end and gain greater visibility into their operations. They will be able to make impactful, future-proof business decisions,  understand the process and risks of change, and overcome obstacles with confidence. 

Enterprise management system use cases and examples

Business transformation 

Business process transformation is a way of creating and managing processes to support evolving business goals. It allows you to detect new opportunities, observe and adapt to shifting market realities, and to define a structured plan to continuously transform your business based on new, stronger foundations.

An enterprise management system makes processes totally transparent and meticulously controlled. This allows you to map your corporate strategy and align with the business to define how your enterprise creates, delivers and captures sustainable value—turning your vision into results. It also helps you to introduce new technology, departments and vendors that would otherwise introduce confusion. The transparency of process complexity, variants and application systems serve as baseline for simplification and cost saving. Because processes are closely tracked, businesses can also align them with internal and external regulation to ensure compliance and minimize risk. Such holistic insights into process aspects building baseline for cross-organizational initiatives (e.g. sustainability) 

Digital workforce enablement​ 

An enterprise management system enables you to manage and govern your enterprise with full visibility. Align your organization from end-to-end to provide up-to-date work instructions, policies and guidelines to all employees. The collaboration platform allows all of your process participants to align on improvements effectively. You can manage and govern your operations while including all relevant stakeholders in the automated processes. Promote transparency, collaboration and communication with a user-friendly portal that offers role-based access to information. Roll out strategies and standards to all departments and stakeholders world-wide and encourage your employees to contribute their expertise to your processes. 

Operational risk management 

An enterprise management system provides insight into the performance and compliance status of current processes so you can react immediately and derive measures for further optimization. You can create all-encompassing dashboard views of relevant business information and KPIs to drive reliable, confident business decisions. Use innovative analytics to provide easy-to-interpret insights at a glance. Use the power of continuous improvement based on process mining insights and business analytics to build greater operational resilience. Maintain regulatory compliance by implementing relevant laws and regulations, such as GDPR, and define appropriate controls to ensure compliance. Create an integrated view of how well your organization manages its unique set of risks and install effective measures to eliminate or mitigate them.  

Customer excellence​ 

Understand your customer expectations and optimize the touchpoints / journeys continuously towards customer satisfaction.​ Use intelligent analysis algorithms to identify dependencies, causalities, and the reasons for poor customer satisfaction. Define optimization measures to achieve continuous improvement. 

Sustainability / ESG performance 

Sustainability means that the environment, the people and the economy are a central and integral part of your organization's strategy. By embracing an enterprise management system to understand, document, execute and constantly improve processes with a focus on sustainability, you can not only put ESG strategy at the heart of your business processes, but also monitor and report progress in a structured way. The single source of truth enables you to develop a robust sustainability strategy, implement and communicate the required changes in operations to meet the targets, reduce risks, and provide transparent tracking and reporting on progress.  

Digital Twin of an Organization and enterprise management system— is there a difference? 

The concept of a Digital Twin of an Organization (DTO) (defined by Gartner) provides a virtual representation of an organization to simulate the business operations and to support the implementation of changes. The term “enterprise management system” is often used synonymously and serves the transformation and optimization of an enterprise. 

How to ensure regulatory compliance with an enterprise management system 

An enterprise management system is the perfect foundation for building, implementing and operating an enterprise-wide compliance and risk management system. The process-oriented approach helps you uncover and document relevant risks, manage incidents and losses, comply with regulations, but also conduct enterprise audits or implement new procedures. All of this is designed to protect and preserve your business. Compliance or conformance to the appropriate regulations can be ensured with the help of process mining. 

Operational excellence with ARIS

ARIS powers the leading enterprise management system to help your organization perform end to end excellence. You’ll gain greater visibility into your operations. You’ll be able to make impactful, future-proof business decisions. As one company said, "Getting ARIS is like hiring the world’s best player to join your team.” 

The ROI of ARIS 

Imagine operations so excellent that they can drive nearly $8M in total benefits and deliver a 301% ROI over three years. Align your organization end to end with an adaptive enterprise management system powered by ARIS. ARIS customers were able to analyze operations and define strategy-based frameworks for business transformation—and effectively execute those strategies toward operational excellence while securing internal and external compliance. Read the study, with our compliments: Forrester Consulting study: The Total Economic Impact™ of Software AG's ARIS

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