Methods

Volume 1: Methods

  1. Six Sigma and Business Process Management
    by Sue Conger
  2. Business Process Model Abstraction
    by Artem Polyvyanyy, Sergey Smirnov and Mathias Weske
  3. Business Process Quality Management
    by Hajo A. Reijers, Jan Mendling and Jan Recker
  4. Semantic Business Process Modelling and Analysis
    by Jörg Becker, Daniel Pfeiffer, Michael Räckers, Thorsten Falk, Matthias Czerwonka
  5. BPMN 2.0 for Modeling Business Processes
    by Gustav Aagesen and John Krogstie
  6. Lifecycle Management of Business Process Variants
    by Manfred Reichert, Alena Hallerbach, Thomas Bauer
  7. Process Choreography Modelling
    by Alistair Barros
  8. Collaborative Process Modeling and Design: The Intersport Case Study
    by Mikael Lind and Ulf Seigerroth
  9. Recommendation-Based Business Processes Design
    by Agnes Koschmider and Andreas Oberweis
  10. Business Process Simulation Survival Guide
    by Wil M. P. van der Aalst
  11. BPM Tool Selection. The Case of the Queensland Court of Justice
    by Islay Davies and Micheal Reeves
  12. Implementing Six Sigma for Improving Business Processes at an Automotive Bank
    by Florian Johannsen, Susanne Leist and Gregor Zellner

In the tradition of BPM, the design of methods, tools, and process modeling methodologies has attracted a substantial amount of interest in the BPM commu- nity. This section covers the comprehensive set of rules and guidelines on how to proceed in the various stages of BPM, methods that often form the most tangible knowledge asset in BPM.

At least three levels of methods can be differentiated. First, process-specific individual techniques provide guidance for modeling, analyzing, animating, simu- lating, improving, or automating a process. A second class of methods covers the entire business process lifecycle, though often with differing levels of emphasis on the single lifecycle phases. Six Sigma and Lean Management are prominent representatives of this class of methodologies. Third, and most comprehensive in their scope, are the methods that guide the enterprise- wide roll-out of BPM as a corporate capability. It is characteristic of the current status of BPM that the body of knowledge on the first type of methods is rich, that a number of the second type of methods are widely used, though usually incomplete, and that representatives of the third type of BPM methodologies are still in their infancy. For all of these meth- odologies it is particularly important to consider the diverse contexts of BPM initiatives since any one-size-fits-all solution is likely to fail. The comprehensive- ness of this section is a clear indicator of the large amount of activity and interest in this area, as well as the ongoing requirement to develop and consolidate BPM methodologies.

In the first chapter in this section, Sue Conger describes Six Sigma, one of the most popular business process lifecycle management methodologies, explains key techniques, gives examples, and positions Six Sigma in BPM. A core capability in the analysis and redesign of business processes is abstraction. In the second chapter in this section, Artem Polyvyanyy, Sergey Smirnov, and Mathias Weske present a process-model abstraction methodology that includes process-transformation rules helping users focus on the most significant parts of a process model in a specific modeling situation.

While there is no shortage of recommendations for modeling business processes, the discipline of process-model assessment has not matured to the same extent. Hajo Reijers, Jan Mendling, and Jan Recker address this challenge in the third chapter of this section by proposing a framework for the holistic evaluation of business process models. One way to improve the quality of process models and subsequent process analyses is to use semantic building blocks. In the fourth chapter, Jörg Becker, Daniel Pfeiffer, Michael Räckers, Thorsten Falk, and Matthias Czerwonka introduce and apply PICTURE, a comparatively simple cost-effective process-modeling approach that reduces complexity. As part of the plethora of process-modeling techniques, first attempts toward standardization have emerged, the most prominent candidate among which is the business process modeling notation (BPMN). The fifth chapter, by Gustav Aagesen and John Krogstie, gives an overview of BPMN 2.0 and discusses its fitness for process analysis, including reports of practical experiences. A particular challenge in process modeling is the management of business-process variants, an issue that emerges in large-scale distributed modeling initiatives. The sixth chapter, by Manfred Reichert, Alena Hallerbach, and Thomas Bauer, discusses how such process variants can be configured and managed over the life-cycle of process models. The authors build on experience from a number of case studies in the automotive, healthcare, and public sector domains.

While an intra-organizational approach toward process modeling remains dom- inant, there is an increasing demand for inter-organizational modeling activities that appropriately conceptualize entire value networks. Two chapters are dedicated to this domain. The chapter by Alistair Barros introduces a process choreography modeling technique for various levels of abstraction, including the required refine- ment steps. In a comprehensive case study, Mikael Lind and Ulf Seigerroth use Intersport in the subsequent chapter to illustrate the real-word requirements of inter- organizational process design. Focusing on strategic alignment, the authors describe collaborative process modeling in this specific case.

Two chapters concentrate on advanced solutions that facilitate the design and analysis of business processes. Agnes Koschmider and Andreas Oberweis propose a recommendation-based editor for process modeling. Already widely used in many web-based applications, recommender systems have only just entered the world of business process modeling. In the tenth chapter, Wil van der Aalst discusses process simulation as one of the key quantitative process analysis techniques, providing a unique introduction to process simulation. Apart from the fundamentals of the topic, the chapter lists 15 risks (or potential pitfalls) of using simulation that will strongly influence future BPM research and practice.

This section closes with two case studies: Islay Davies and Michael Reeves report on the experiences of the Queensland Court of Justice as part of their process- management tool selection process, and Florian Johannsen, Susanne Leist, and Gregor Zellner report on their experience with implementation of Six Sigma at an automotive bank.