Why Google Glass will be a boon for BPM Software and Business Process Reengineering

By | March 4, 2013 | business process re-engineering

“Everywhere that a tablet is being used in an industrial or enterprise software application today, it will be done better with Google Glass within 12 months. ” – Brian Reale.google glass

I understand that the interesting thing about big ideas like Google Glass is usually trying to figure out how this type of technology will affect larger society as a whole, but sometimes there are unintended consequences for industry that are equally as interesting.  Pundits should not just be thinking about how Google Glass will let you answer a phone call or send a text message while riding a bike (Brian Brushwood‘s big idea in this week’s TWIT #394 – Math has Sold Out) or filming an episode of social dissent, but let’s also think for a moment about how Google Glass will change industry because it is poised to change it in big ways.

Everywhere that the ipad is being used in an industrial or enterprise software application today, it will be done better with Google Glass within the year.  Even at the $1,500 price tag it will be worth it.  Teacher evaluations and patient charts will be much better with Google Glass.  But, getting closer to home, I will venture to say that Business Process Management and BPM Software applications will also get a big boost from Google Glass.  In fact, one of our clients of ProcessMaker BPM Software a large Asian manufacturer, and we are already discussing pilot concepts to allow factory line workers to perform defect detection and kickoff non conformance worklfows directly from their Google Glass.  Imagine it for a moment – a factory worker is performing a routine inspections of a Printed Circuit Board wearing Google Glass.  The minute the inspector detects a non conformance, they can snap a picture, fill out a form, and route it in parallel back to engineering or escalate to a manager – all without ever taking their hands or eyes off the part in question.  You don’t think that that will add some process efficiencies?

Let’s look at another example.  A doc worker is receiving RMA shipments as part of an RMA workflow.  While the doc worker is opening up the box and inspecting the returned item, he or she is already snapping pictures, attaching to a form and routing to the next instance for either credit or replacement.  Emails are being fired off by the BPM Software to alert the client that their credit is in process.  How is BPM Software doing this work today?  Answer: Handheld terminals and bar code scanners.  Sure, this works, but it cannot be done hands free.  In both the scenarios whether it be the circuit board inspector or the worker receiving the defective goods at a warehouse, having a truly hands-free way of interacting with the product while performing these jobs would be a significant boost in productivity, comfort, and hence would continue to reduce errors and increase efficiency.

Google Glass is going to be a huge boon for BPM Software and Applications, and in the end Google Glass will do more for advancing BPM than BPMN (especially BPMN 2.0) – laugh…laugh.

Leo, I love TWIT, but I think sometimes you guys are underestimating that Enterprise Software and Enterprise Applications can affect society in just as many ways as consumer products.  You could have at least paid tribute to the implications that Google Glass will have on Enterprise Software and Industry.

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