sstein's picture

ARIS Process World 08

Yesterday, ARIS UserDay was already crowded, but today’s ARIS ProcessWorld has even more people. Some minutes ago, the Gartner session ended and the room was completely filled. There were several people sitting or standing at the walls to be able to listen to the presentation by Marc Kerremans of Gartner...

Marc KerremanMarc Kerremans’ presentation explained Gartner’s view on business process analysis and management. He started off the session by pointing out that just downsizing all processes is not a good improvement strategy in all situations, because also blood letting is not a cure for every illness. He went on by defining business process management. He sees it as a discipline, which integrates different techniques like business process modelling, process discovery, and simulation. This integration must be guided by a methodology.

The combination of the various BPM techniques requires integrating the different meta data generated. Marc Kerresmans stressed the point that this integration should be done by storing the meta data in a single repository like ARIS.

After talking about repositories, he went on to talk about business process management suites (BPMS). He doesn’t see ARIS as such a BPMS, because ARIS doesn’t provide an execution environment - at least not now. He summarised the history of BPMS saying that they originated from workflow technology. However, it seemed he was not really a big fan of workflow technologies, because he said they took the flexibility users had and transferred it into applications.

Marc Kerresmans also showed the Gartner Magic Quadrant for business process analysis. The quadrant categorises BPA tools according to their overall BPM philosophy and their ability to implement and support this philosophy. IDS Scheer is leading in this quadrant since many years.

He also explained why most business process automation efforts fail. In his view, business process automation is using a push-model similar to what was used in manufacturing industry till the 1980th. Since then, manufacturing switched to a pull-model like KANBAN. In his view, business process automation must also get to this point. Today, services are defined after deriving the requirements from the business process to be automated. When the service was developed by IT, the business process already changed and the service doesn’t fit anymore. This gap must be closed by providing services on time.

At the end of his talk, he provided some recommendations for successful business process management:

  • use a BPM tool to integrate the meta data from the different BPM techniques
  • architectural roles like IT Architect will become more important, so companies should start now to define those roles
  • a BPM effort needs the right people, so make sure to staff all key roles
  • be pragmatic in your BPM effort and don’t try to boil the ocean by tackling all business processes in one effort
  • monitor the evolution of standards and if they are getting relevant for you
  • use pre-built models if possible

Even though much of the recommendations seem to be obvious, it will be a challenge for many organisations to implement them.