BPM Conference – Vendors Showcase BPM and EA Capabilities

The recent event from BPM CON II – Intelligent BPM for the Productive Enterprise highlighted something that I have posted about before – the importance of EA & BPM convergence.

Admittedly, everyone has a different view on what BPM and EA is and how value can be derived from each but as with most things, real benefits come from combining individual concepts, methods and tools rather than just working with them individually on a case by case basis.

This  general principle of holism was concisely summarized by Aristotle in the Metaphysics:  “The whole is more than the sum of its parts”.

Reductionism in contrast, is sometimes seen as the opposite of holism. Reductionism in science says that a complex system can be explained by reduction to its fundamental parts. This sounds very much like the abstraction capabilities that Business Process Mangement and Enterprise Architecture provide.

No matter how you choose to define it, ultimately the focus should be on  how both can be used to solve tactical business problems while executing a longer term strategic roadmap. But I digress…..

The BPM II conference had four vendors presenting their capabilities and approaces to how BPM & EA could be used.

Continue reading

New IT Capability Maturity Framework (IT-CMF) – Assessment Tool Released

The Innovation Value Institute (IVI) at the National University of Ireland (NUI) has launched the IT Capability Maturity Framework (IT-CMF)

industrial_frameworkIt is said to provide a concise management roadmap to optimize business value derived from IT investments. This framework is postioned as a tool that can be used to deliver greater business value from IT while reducing the complexity of IT choices for CIOs.

 

According to IVI, the IT-CMF provides a management roadmap to optimize business value derived from IT investments. IT-CMF provides an integrated roadmap that:

  • Leverages the power of existing best practices
  • Open Innovation: is being developed by a diverse consortium of academic and business leaders
  • Is being tested in the real world at every stage of development
  • An actionable approach that helps IT design, deliver and manage for business value

Continue reading

A Guide to Beating the IT Recession Blues

 glass_scupture_desiree_hopeIT spending is often an issue for any organisation, but especially in harsh economic times it is even more important to see what benefit IT brings to the business. This report looks at the degree to which UK organisations understand what IT is doing for their business, and in particular how some companies measure this and benefit from it.

This guide from Quocirca is essential reading  for organisations wanting to outpace their peers during tough times.

Summary

Companies have to remain competitive, but the recent years of prosperity have made this less of a driving need in many industries. Most organisations think they can outperform their rivals, and many believe that their approach to IT can play a significant part in this.

Continue reading

BPM and SOA – Leading Modernisation Initiatives during the Downturn

In a recent article from CBR it states that research shows evidence that many organisations are focussing their modernisation initiatives around BPM and SOA technologies and approaches.data-analysis

CIOs are abandoning the rip-and-replace culture in favour of modernising existing systems, research from Software AG has revealed. 

The research, which quizzed over 150 IT directors, revealed an appetite for implementation of BPM and SOA initiatives as organisations try to cut costs and improve service delivery in the tough economic climate. “Strategic investment in modernisation will deliver cost cuts and free-up talented IT staff to concentrate on business critical projects and fight the downturn,” Jim Close of Software AG said. 

A priority in ensuring success with modernisation is to choose a preferred set of common tools. In cases where organisations have many disparate data integration tools, rationalisation is required to esure a fit for purpose toolset. Not doing so increases maintenance costs, licensing and having to have a diverse and often specialist skills and resource pool.

Software AG found that 21% of respondents to its poll see application modernisation as a top priority with some 24% of the sites surveyed viewing business process management initiatives as the top choice to fight the downturn.  They said that sloppy process management damaged customer service delivery. 

In further research from Software AG, it found that in Germany companies report that business flexibility supported by IT is a key concern.

Continue reading

eClarus – Roundtripping Business Process and SOA Modeling

I recently had an opportunity to review the eClarus Business Process Modeler from eClarus Software. I found it to be an intuitive, very feature rich and versatile tool mainly targeted to business analysts and developers who are designing and developing SOA solutions.

The product suite is positioned as a tool that is standards based and enables roundtrip business process and SOA modelling. eClarus is available is targeted at two categories of user:

  • Business Analysts
  • SOA Architects

The product has some interesting capabilities that can definitely be useful to individual users and small teams. The integration with other products e.g. Eclipse  (using a plugin) is especially useful, even though it tends to be  focused at development teams and the related tools sets used for configuration management etc.

Continue reading

The Benefits of BPM when Going Green

I have posted on this subject before and thought it would be good to revisit the subject as it is very topical and important.

“Going Green” in the context of IT seems to be very focussed on how businesses can reduce their operational costs WRT their physical infrastructure e.g. datacentres, server consolidation/reduction, virtualisation, cooling and power consumption improvements etc. 

green-business-11-greenest-corporations-portfolio An aspect that is recognised as being able to contribute to cutting costs (in support of Going Green) is the optimisation of the business working practices.

This however is not always clearly understood and as readily quantifiable as the more accepted case for physical infrastructure changes.

 In a recent article published on eWeek a case study from Tetra (a global Aquarium and fish food manufacturer) is used to explore how after adopting BPM, the streamlined process allowed its engineers, scientists and other knowledge workers across the globe to collaborate about changes to their product line online. This reduced the travel, paper consumption and also allowed them to realize their enviornmental benefits.  Continue reading

BPM Adoption and Delivered Value/ROI – Market Research and Analysis

Understanding of how Business Process Management (BPM) can deliver value to business is becoming increasingly well understood by businesses and IT even though the following points seem to indicate why there may be slow adoption across some organisations:

  • Pockets of user resistance across organisations and departments
     
  • Lack of understanding leading to poor adoption due to immaturity
     
  • Lack of executive sponsorship
     
  • No strategic plan to adopt BPM i.e. adoption tends to be tactical (departmental)

Business users, practitioners and technologists all differ in their opinion of what BPM is and what is hype, theory and practically achievable but there does seem to be consensus that it has the capability for sizeable, realizable benefits when implemented correctly.


Quick Recap for the BPM uninitiated

Automation of business process must be balanced with human exception management, which is managed by workflow. These business processes are enhanced by the ability to interconnect a range of different applications systems and data across the organisation. These may include general ledger, order entry, inventory, process control, and human resources to mention a few.

The IT perspective is that BPM aims to achieve greater value from existing software assets. IT investment allows business processes to be used to capture information electronically and automate services delivery. As part of this automation, BPM ensures that an automated process is used to dynamically manage business logic with integrated application services and therefore forms a corollary to Service Oriented Architecture (SOA).


What the ‘Usual Suspects’ think….

This post explores some of the BPM market trends and looks into where current BPM demand is as well as its perceived adoption potential. To get a sense of the size of the BPM market, I turned to some of the usual and not so usual suspects. My Google search returned the following results: Continue reading