Information Technology

Volume 1: Information Technology

  1. The Role of Information Technology in Business Process Management
    by Anna Sidorova, Russell Torres, Alaa Al Beayeyz
  2. In-Memory Data and Process Management
    by Hasso Plattner, Jens Krüger
  3. Business Process Management and the Social Enterprise
    by Sandy Kemsley
  4. Workflow Management
    by Chun Ouyang, Michael Adams, Moe Thandar Wynn and Arthur H.M. ter Hofstede
  5. A Framework for Resource-Based Workflow Management
    by Akhil Kumar and Jianrui Wang
  6. BPM Meets SOA. Beginning of a New Era
    by Fred A. Cummins
  7. From Business Process Models to Service Interfaces
    by Marlon Dumas and Thomas Kohlborn
  8. Integrated Business Process and Service Management
    by Thomas Gulledge
  9. Business Process Management Standards
    by Frank Leymann, Dimka Karastoyanova and Mike P. Papazoglou
  10. The UN/CEFACT Modeling Methodology UMM 2.0: Choreographing Business Document Exchanges
    by Marco Zapletal, Rainer Schuster, Philipp Liegl, Christian Huemer and Birgit Hofreiter

Information technology’s (IT) support for business processes has been a topic of interest since office automation and the related vision of a paperless office emerged approximately 40 years ago. IT has had such an important role in many BPM initiatives that not a small part of the wider BPM community believes that process automation equals BPM. However, in alignment with the comprehensive BPM understanding that underlies this handbook, we contend that there is much more to BPM than the automated execution of processes. That said, IT has been and will continue to be a main enabler for progression and innovation in the BPM discipline. In this regard, IT today supports not only to process automation but also a great variety of tasks far beyond process execution.

In the opening chapter of this section, Anna Sidorova, Russell Torres, and Alaa Al Beayeyz introduce the multi-faceted role of IT in BPM, developing an expanded view of IT support for business processes that allows the processenabling role of a variety of IT artifacts to be considered. While the expanded IT landscape includes diverse solutions, ranging from infrastructures and sensor networks to social net- working tools, process-aware information systems’ (PAIS) explicit awareness of the execution of business processes is clearly at the core of the BPM discipline.

Two recent technological developments in the area of PAIS developments that have inspired contemporary BPM and they are discussed in the next chapters. First, Hasso Plattner and Jens Krüger introduce in-memory data and process management, presenting the technological foundations that make in-memory databases feasible and the benefits this technology can deliver to enterprise scenarios: real- time data access, broader and deeper analyses, and simplified IT architecture. Second, Sandy Kemsley introduces the main features of enterprise social software and illustrates how BPM systems are evolving into social business platforms. Kemsley stresses the importance of considering the cultural effects of collaboration during process modeling and process execution along with technological impera- tives like modern user interface models, development techniques, and delivery mechanisms.

The core set of principles and capabilities of BPM-relevant IT has been informed by workflow management systems, which have traditionally been dedicated to the design, execution, and controlling of at least semi-automated business processes. In the second chapter in this section, Chun Ouyang, Michael Adams, Moe Thandar Wynn, and Arthur ter Hofstede provide a contemporary overview of the field of workflow management, covering workflow patterns, workflow languages, formal foundations, and the exemplary workflow system YAWL. An alternative to the control flow focused view of classical workflow management systems is presented in chapter two by Akhil Kumar and Jianrui Wang. Instead of the flow of activities, the authors present a resource-driven workflow approach, describing the new methodology for process design at length, along with an architecture and implementation issues.

The already mature understanding of workflow management has received significant inspiration from the emergence of the service paradigm that supports greater flexibility in process implementation. Three chapters unfold the mutual impact of process management and service management. First, Fred Cummins discusses the interrelationships between BPM and service-oriented architectures (SOA), as well as enterprise architecture design more generally. Rather than concentrating on the technological challenges, Cummins elaborates on the value proposition of this new unification under the headings of enterprise optimization and enterprise agility. The chapter develops a vision for next-generation enterprise architecture management for the collaborative enterprise. Second, a more technical perspective is taken by Marlon Dumas and Thomas Kohlborn, who describe how processes have to be designed to take full advantage of service-enabled infrastructures. The authors focus on vertical integration by sketching a method by which to analyze a business process in view of enabling its execution on top of a service-oriented application landscape. Third, Thomas Gulledge presents an implementation plan from BPM to SOA that can serve as a guideline to designing a service-oriented PAIS.

BPM relies on well-defined and accepted standards so the critical transformation from design and analysis to execution forms a smooth pathway. This evolution and the essence of BPM standards are discussed in the chapter by Frank Leymann, Dimka Karastoyanova, and Mike Papazoglou. The authors differentiate between graph-based and operator-based approaches, showcasing and comparing influential standards with a focus on the role of BPEL (Business Process Execution Language) and BPMN (Business Process Model and Notation). A focus on the important field of B2B processes is taken on by Marco Zapletal, Rainer Schuster, Philipp Liegl, Christian Huemer, and Birgit Hofreiter. They present the UN/CEFACT Modeling Methodology UMM 2.0 for choreographing business document exchanges.