It’s all about BPM

Not “beats per minute” in some dance-hall craze – BPM is all about “Business Process Management”.   This is a kind of analogy to – and has been “re-named” as – workflow.

But, it’s really MORE than just workflow – with many different offerings from Microsoft, as mentioned in this post by Graham Elliott.

It sounds like the demo of K2.NET Black Pearl has ignited some discussion – along the lines of “where does it fit” ?

As for me – it’s some of a “better” Windows Workflow – although it’s really just a “code-gen” for Windows Workflow itself (in a sense).

You don’t have to create any “server” program – and it interacts seamlessly with Sharepoint (with more functionality than the out-of-the-box workflows – and/or Sharepoint Designer).

I guess WF is essentially a “framework” – and K2.NET BlackPearl is using the framework to achieve some amazing functionality.  

Graham is very knowledgeable on workflow, have seen a number of great Windows Workflow Demo’s from Graham over the last year or so (and other .NET 3.0 cool stuff).

…Nick Ward pointed me to a white paper that we released in February (so may be old news to some of you) called Microsoft and Business Process Management: A Technology Overview.

The white paper is written by the one-and-only David Chappell and is up to his usual high standard…  

So if you are keen to understand Microsoft’s range of offerings that fall under the umbrella of “BPM technology”, check it out.

Yep – this is definately worth having a read.  Details the concepts of a “Human Workflow” – and “System Workflow” – as well as the Microsoft offerings, including BizTalk, Sharepoint and Windows Workflow Foundation.

Maybe it’s just me – but I’ve often wondered where BizTalk fits in the scheme of things (!)

K2.NET, and other partner solutions are also covered – all allow creating combined human and system workflows with capabilities beyond what Microsoft provides.

Microsoft and Business Process Management: A Technology Overview 

Microsoft has a range of offerings that fall under the umbrella of BPM technology – and what Microsoft calls “people-ready processes”. For end users, these technologies can provide direct solutions to process problems.

For independent software vendors (ISVs), Microsoft’s BPM technologies act as a platform for building more specialized functions.

This paper presents a big-picture view of the area, looking at both Microsoft offerings and complementary partner products.

The goal is to provide a technology overview of business process management in the Microsoft world.

So – back to the original question regarding “BPM” :

What is business process management (BPM)?

To business people, BPM means viewing an organization as a set of processes that can be defined, managed, and optimized. Rather than focusing on traditional departmental silos, such as finance, marketing, and manufacturing, BPM takes a cross-department, process-oriented view.

To technical people, however, BPM is something quite different. In this context, it most often refers to a group of technologies focused on defining, executing, and monitoring process logic.

Despite their different perspectives, both groups have the same goal: making business processes better.

Ahh – the age-old quest of “Information Technology” – that’s essentially what it boils down to – business people PLUS technical people.

I’ll be looking deeper into Black Pearl with this in mind – there’s some new fancy tools that will REALLy benefit the ‘business analyst’ side of the fence.    Stay tuned.

Full Story – thanks to Graham Elliott.


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