ARIS Community - We Love BPM

The Process as a Transformation - ARIS Express Model

rob davis's picture
by Rob Davis in Professional ARIS posted on 2009-09-28

Some of you may have heard me talk about the "Process as a transformation" in the "Before you start modelling course on the online academy. Well here is an example of this modelled in ARIS Express, 

preview of The Process as a Transformation - ARIS Express Model ()
There are no attachments
Donald Dillon posted on 2009-10-26


I like this model, but would like to see the Express conventions opened up to allow a slightly different presentation.  Specifically your model does not differentiate on the documents providing inputs.

I read this as object Input (document) is consumed by the activity in order to produce Output (document) but the object Policies/Procedures (document) I believe would not be consumed and therefore should have a different connection type, namely 'Supports'.  Ideally I would rather see an object different than the document object used for either the input/output or documented knowledge role in this model.

In ABD we use technical term as input/output and documented knowledge as the guidelines/procedures, etc.  Express seems to be 1 symbol short in order to do this.

Do you have any thoughts or input about this perhaps being extended in Express?

thanks in advance

Donald Dillon


Sylvia Buehler posted on 2009-12-17

Hi Doanld Dillon, hi Rob,

great and useful comment. I had written much input to this but unfortunately I was checking the "More information about formatting options" and all input was lost - and my time wasted.

So, no I put it a bit shorter and maybe a bit more direct. I don't like the ARIS Express look and feel since it not only differs from ARIS standard and forces long time user to translate between them but is also difficult to read since most symbols look basically similar and are beside the color hard to distinguish especially when printed without color which still is done to safe toner and reduce costs.

Even worse is, that this way of representation is now used in almost every blog, webcast or eLearning. Since they are excellent I would like to use them to promote BPM and the use of ARIS within our company, but since it causes useless confusion and discussions we won't be able to use them.

What is the benefit of this inconsistency and confusion?

Thanks in advance for your comment.

Sylvia Bühler

Sebastian Stein posted on 2009-12-17

Hi Silvia,

it is true that both tools differ, but we are going to fix that in one of the upcoming releases. You will be able to use the new symbols also in the pro versions if you like.

On a more general note, you are touching here an important point. We as a vendor must from time to time come up with something new. Of course, for a long term ARIS user the symbols do not matter, because you know of the value of ARIS. But you can't attract new users if your tool doesn't look as a tool has to look at the end of 2009. Symbol design is fashion and as always with fashion, some people will not like it.

Best regards,


Sylvia Buehler posted on 2009-12-17

Hi Sebastian,

I welcome change also in the appearance of the symbols - that is not the issue. The last trial with the office processes was not so successful even it may have been the taste of the time then - or not since at least not ot my knowledge they were much used.

Generally the soft touch and the colours of the symbols are good (colours are often changed to the liking and corporate identity of a company anyway). The problem is more the shape: they are all the same and so differentiation is difficult. Good design should be tantamount to good readability and usability (e.g. in the symbol bar; if all have the same shape and some even the same colour there is fun an joy picking them!

That is my point. Just adjust the shapes to more differentiation the rest (besides the differing object types and - names) would be fine.

Best regards


Sebastian Stein posted on 2009-12-18

Dear Sylvia,

you are right, symbols should be recognisable even without colors. I forward this discussion to our usability team!