Business Process Management Glossary

What is Benchmarking?

Benchmarking is a strategic management tool employed in Business Process Management (BPM) to evaluate and improve organizational processes by comparing performance metrics against industry standards or competitors.

Key Concepts:

Types of Benchmarking: It can be internal, comparing processes within the organization, competitive, assessing against industry rivals, or functional, analyzing specific operations. Each type provides unique insights.

Performance Metrics: Identification of key performance indicators (KPIs) is vital in benchmarking. These metrics, such as efficiency, cost-effectiveness, and customer satisfaction, serve to assess process success.


Data Collection: Involves gathering relevant data on current processes. This can include process cycle times, resource utilization, and customer feedback, forming a foundation for comparison.

Analysis and Comparison: A detailed analysis of collected data against industry benchmarks reveals areas of strength and weakness. This comparison guides BPM efforts, highlighting where improvement initiatives are most impactful.

Strategic Implementation: The process results inform strategic decision-making. Identified best practices or superior processes from benchmarks become targets for improvement, guiding organizations toward enhanced efficiency and effectiveness.


Continuous Improvement: This process fosters a culture of continuous improvement within BPM. Regular assessments against external standards drive ongoing enhancements in organizational processes.

Competitive Advantage: By adopting best practices identified through the process, organizations gain a competitive edge. This proactive approach ensures alignment with or surpassing industry standards.

When to Use Benchmarking?

Process Evaluation: This process proves valuable when evaluating existing processes. It helps identify inefficiencies, redundancies, or areas for improvement within BPM frameworks.

Strategic Planning: Prior to strategic planning cycles, the process also offers insights that steer decision-making. It helps organizations set realistic goals based on industry best practices.

Further Resources of Benchmarking:

Explore more about different process improvement terms in our BPM Glossary.