I frequently write about business process improvement and information agility. To illustrate best practices, I draw from the many successful BPM and case management implementations  I have been fortunate to work with or review.  This is NOT one of those articles!

 Process rant alert: With apologies in advance to the many forward thinking,  technology-enabled companies in the healthcare insurance arena, this article is  both a rant about inefficient processes and a plea for better customer-oriented service from that sector.

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Appreciate the response to the Interview Video Clip  in my earlier post on Adaptive Case Management —  so here is more of that interview:

A conversation with…  Tom Shepherd on Adaptive Case Management

A conversation with…  Dana Khoyi on Adaptive Case Management

My article “How Adaptive Case Management Supports Information Agility” recently appeared on CMS Wire and I’ve received some good feedback on the premise of the piece…

Because information fuels your business decisions, it is most valuable when properly served and effectively consumed by your critical business processes. The goal is better business decisions. The question to consider then is “How can I get the most value from information? “ More often than not, applying adaptive case management to deliver information to your knowledge workers could be the answer.  

I’ve also received a number of inquiries from readers who wanted to know more about the ‘What and Why’ of Adaptive Case Management.  If you’re interested, I recommend viewing this short ACM Video Clip out on YouTube of an interview I recently did with two of my colleagues,  case management experts Tom Shepherd and Dana Khoyi.

Hope you will check out the article (and the video) and please share your comments!

In my Round Up  post last week I covered some of the highlights of the #BPM2010 conference. In this post I wanted to tell you more about the first ever ACM Mentor Camp workshop and the Cyber Roundtable we simulcast from Stevens Institute on Friday of the BPM conference.

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Are you one of those people who actually looked forward to going back to school each year after summer break?  I admit that I was.  So it is no surprise that I really enjoyed last week’s international BPM2010 conference (#bpm2010) and ACM Mentor Camp workshop (#acmjam) held at the Stevens Institute of Technology.  Much praise goes to Dr. Michael zur Muehlen  (@mzurmuehlen) who organized the conference  – outstanding!  

Though I arrived late in the conference due to scheduling conflicts, I was able to follow the earlier sessions  through Twitter and Blogs. I was also fortunate to have the opportunity to meet in person and via cyber simulcast my colleagues at the ACM Mentor workshop – more on that experience in an upcoming post.

Since I appreciated the blog coverage so much I thought it would be helpful to do a round-up of the summaries and excellent commentary.  So if you were there and especially if you were not able to attend, here it is:

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It’s pretty clear that the rising importance of “knowledge work” is central to the recent buzz around adaptive case management (ACM).  But what is ACM, really?   In my last blog post I talked about an incredibly exhilarating  TweetJam  session that I participated in on the subject of Mastering the Unpredictable with Adaptive Case Management ( #acmjam). 

In this post, I want to share some additional thought-provoking tweets from that session  – here are some of my favorites that I think help to illuminate the nature of knowledge work and ACM:

  •  piewords: Knowledge work needs triggers, works best with others. Collaboration increases it. #bpm can keep it on track, but not solve it. #acmjam
  • neilwd: Careful to avoid retrofitting “knowledge work” defn to fit to the #acm pattern. There’s a spectrum of work; blurred boundaries. #acmjam
  • frijswijk: One important observation i made last 2 weeks. The Business User doesn´t care about models, it finds it way to complex. #acmjam
  • piewords:  If you approach solving ACM from a #BPM angle, you will fail. Start in the middle with person working the Case, then move outward. #acmjam
  • piewords: You can model the opening of a case & the completion of a case, but the working of a case needs fluidity. #bpm #acmjam
  • cmooreforrester: knowledge work to me is when the worker has latitude to make lots of difference choices/decisions; process isn’t prescribed #acmjam
  • tomshepherd: @frijswijk Goal driven, obviously important part of work. ACM not about creating “knowledge management free for all” #acmjam
  • piewords:  The fluidity in the working of a case must be captured & categorized to be leveraged as a resource for future cases. #acmjam

and one of my most favorite observations:

  •  JoshuaWaldman:  @piewords so it’s a people first approach to processes. I dig it. #acmjam

 While Tweets can be intriguing, they are after all just 140 character (or less) snippets, so if you’re interested in learning more about adaptive case management from some very thoughtful writings, here are a few of my favorite links:

Definition of Adaptive Case Management

Defining ACM – Jacob Ukelson’s blogpost

Process, Improved – Tom Shepherd’s Blog

   and last, but definitely not least:

Thoughts on Collaborative Planning – Keith Swenson’s Blog

I participated in a TweetJam today – the discussion centered on process improvement approaches and solutions for managing unpredictable, less structured knowledge work.  Connie Moore (@cmooreforrester) of Forrester Research moderated the Jam – Twitter hashtag #acmjm – and along with authors of the newly published book Mastering the Unpredictable  did a really fast paced conversation that explored adaptive case management (ACM) concepts and answered questions from business and IT practitioners. 

BTW, you can buy the MtU book out on Amazon (I posted a review out there)  or register for a complimentary copy at the Global 360 Case Management resource center.

This tweet session was awesome not only because it explored some of the latest thinking and technology for process improvement, but also because it used Social Media to bring together  a diverse community  of thought leaders from around the globe.  There were more than 800 tweets in just a 2 hour period from more than 70 participants!   I suspect there were many more who were monitoring the discussion – since the “invitation” to the Jam reached more than 44,000 people on Twitter alone and the Jam itself reached about 5,000 people on twitter with one or more of the tweets. 

I know the authors will be Blog’ing about their impressions from the Jam and hope that other participants will too.  I’ll share my perspective on some of the highlights in this and subsequent blog entries.  For today, here’s two of the topics:

1. Why all the buzz about ACM now?

It’s true that “case management” has been around for some time, but the “buzz” is growing  these days because of the increasing importance of “knowledge work” on the “demand side’ and the availability/evolution of  more effective adaptive case management solutions on the “supply side.”  

  •  tomshepherd: RT @cmooreforrester: At #Forrester we think the nature of work is changing. Repetitive work is automated or off-shored. what’s left is really hard work #acmjam
  • swensonkeith: @cmooreforrester knowledge work is not routine. Precise work depends upon situation. Emergent, highly effected by how it unfolds #acmjam
  • juliebhunt: RT @piewords: @cmooreforrester I think the realization that neither #ECM or #bpm vendors can do it alone has focused the attention.#acmjam

One of the best Tweets was from Joshua Waldman on the nature of knowledge work itself! 

cmooreforrester: I like this definition RT @JoshuaWaldman: Knowledge work= using your creative brain to achieve a goal. #acmjam

2. What is ACM technology?

Lots of discussion around this question and I agree with Forrester that business process management (BPM) and enterprise content management (ECM) suites alone are insufficient for dynamic case management, but the convergence of BPM, ECM, business analytics, and event processing will breathe new life into case management… and will provide new opportuntities for businesses to benefit from the technology. 

  • tomshepherd: #CaseManagement requires a blend of capabilities, some from ECM,BPM,BI.Some BPMS are flexible enuf. Same 4 #ECM #acmjam

My colleague Tom Shepherd and I recently wrote an executive perspective white paper on the topic of knowledge work and ACM; you can check it out at Winning in the New Normal: Adaptive Case Management Strategies to Deal with Business as it Happens.