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Ten principles of good business process management

Jan vom Brocke (University of Liechtenstein, Vaduz, Principality of Liechtenstein)
Theresa Schmiedel (University of Liechtenstein, Vaduz, Principality of Liechtenstein)
Jan Recker (Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, Australia)
Peter Trkman (University of Ljubljana, Ljubljana, Slovenia)
Willem Mertens (Vlerick Business School and KU Leuven, Leuven, Belgium)
Stijn Viaene (Vlerick Business School and KU Leuven, Leuven, Belgium)

Business Process Management Journal

ISSN: 1463-7154

Article publication date: 1 July 2014




The purpose of this paper is to foster a common understanding of business process management (BPM) by proposing a set of ten principles that characterize BPM as a research domain and guide its successful use in organizational practice.


The identification and discussion of the principles reflects the viewpoint, which was informed by extant literature and focus groups, including 20 BPM experts from academia and practice.


The authors identify ten principles which represent a set of capabilities essential for mastering contemporary and future challenges in BPM. Their antonyms signify potential roadblocks and bad practices in BPM. The authors also identify a set of open research questions that can guide future BPM research.

Research limitations/implications

The findings suggest several areas of research regarding each of the identified principles of good BPM. Also, the principles themselves should be systematically and empirically examined in future studies.

Practical implications

The findings allow practitioners to comprehensively scope their BPM initiatives and provide a general guidance for BPM implementation. Moreover, the principles may also serve to tackle contemporary issues in other management areas.


This is the first paper that distills principles of BPM in the sense of both good and bad practice recommendations. The value of the principles lies in providing normative advice to practitioners as well as in identifying open research areas for academia, thereby extending the reach and richness of BPM beyond its traditional frontiers.



vom Brocke, J., Schmiedel, T., Recker, J., Trkman, P., Mertens, W. and Viaene, S. (2014), "Ten principles of good business process management", Business Process Management Journal, Vol. 20 No. 4, pp. 530-548.



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Copyright © 2014, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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