“BPM In Practice” in San Diego

On March 26, 2009 I will be participating in another “BPM in Practice” seminar in San Diego. This full day event will explore workflow and BPM from a number of different points of view. We start with the basic, advance quickly to the new enterprise architecture, and from there explore 5 key standards and how they might or might not be applicable. While there is an organized presentation, the sessions are generally intimate enough that we can have a discussion on any side topic that the audience wants to go into. Continue reading

London Calling

It has been a while since I given an update on the work of the WfMC Technical Committee. The last couple of months has been busy, and this is all building toward two standards tutorial events: one in DC and one in London. Before we get to that, it has been a busy couple of months:

XPDL 2.1 – A new update to this specification due to the hard work of a number of people contributing and painstakingly edited and assembled by Robert Shapiro. The WfMC working group 1 met in Nashville and voted for adoption of the 2.1 spec as it is. The new version contains extensions to support BPMN 1.1 (also just released) and include a new section on conformance testing. This is an important step because it allows us to specify several levels of conformance, and a way to measure which level you are at. Bruce Silver contributed significantly to this approach. Tom Laverty from Global 360 developed an XSLT script for performing the test. All in all, it is another step forward in the WfMC effort to allow for a process design ecosystem.

BPAF – A new acronym is born. The Workflow Reference Model describes interface 5 which is a way for events and other historical information to be passed to an analytical tool for processing and mining. At the Nashville meeting a decision was made to call this “Business Process Analytics Format”. This is a standard XML structure which a BPMS can generate, and Process Intelligence product can consume in order to product high quality analytics. Of course many such tools can be programmers to take a stream of event in any format, but a standardized format will allow us to fine tune the precise semantic meaning of each attribute of the event, and make it far easier to hook various types of process engines together without programming. There is a working group led by Michael zur Muehlen and Shane Gabie.

Wf-XML – Main focus on creating a new RESTful version of this specification in cooperation with Open Geospatial Consortium. Find out more about this at GeoBlicki.

Events – there have been a number of successful BPM tutorial events:

  • Las Vegas, Feb 2008, BPM In Practice at Gartner BPM Summit drew a full room of 60+ people for this three hour tutorial by Keith Swenson and Robert Shapiro
  • Nashville, Feb 2008, BPM In Practice at the BPM Tech Show was a repeat success with the three hour tutorial. This one was recorded and is being turned into a book!

Future Events – please mark your calendars, the following:

Standards Tutorials in Europe

WfMC experts are again presenting the standards tutorials at two venues in Europe.

1. Poznań Poland.  Due to a big upsurge in BPM use in Poland in the past couple of years, we were invited to present a day and a half on Oct 8 and 9.  Here are links for overview and registration.

2. Paris La Défense, France.  We have long had membership in the coalition in France, it is nice to finally hold an event there on Oct 10.  Here is a links for  registration (in French).

WfMC members take note:  will be holding the fall meeting of the WfMC in Paris, hosted by TIBCO, on Oct 11 and 12.

Feb 5 will be another Bay Area Workflow Seminar

I heard a funny rumor today: someone heard that the OMG was buying the WfMC in order to put an end to XPDL. I am sure the OMG folks find this just as amusing as the WfMC members do. And I can assure you that no such thing is happening, probably more due to OMG unwillingness to shell out the money than WfMC unwillingness to accept the cash. Continue reading

Summary: BPM 2006 in Mainz Germany

It has been two weeks, but I have been so occupied it is hard to keep up. WfMC held the latest meeting in Mainz Germany, which is near Frankfurt, Sept 26-28 concurrently with the Business Process Management 2006 conference.

On Sept 29, WfMC held BPM Standards Tutorial Day where a number of key coalition members presented details on WfMC and other standards relevant to BPM. This is a relatively expensive event (€1295) so the audience expects a small environment with ready access to the presenters.

I must say that I am pleased that all of the people who volunteered to create content for this event all successfully delivered excellent presentations. It happens so often with volunteer organizations that people flake out, but certainly not this time, and I believe this is a sign of vitality of WfMC and the value that these members see in helping to spread information about the WfMC work.

Tom Baeyens who heads up the JBoss jBPM initiative attended the tutorial day, and it was a pleasure and an honor to meet him in person. He wrote up a nice summary of the event on his blog. He accurately points out that WfMC needs to do better in public relations (I would have sayed HYPE) than contenders such as BPEL. So true. But at least WfMC has maintained credibility over the long haul.

WfMC now has a new executive director: Nathaniel Palmer. Founder and President at Transformation+Innovation, and a long time analyst in the BPM space. He has some great new ideas for increasing the effectiveness of the coalition at getting the message out. Of course, it would be hard to completely replace the excellent service that Layna Fisher was bringing to the coalition for the past 5 years, we were glad to hear that Layna will continue to organize and run the Workflow Handbook part of the WfMC.
This day also represent a trial run for a series of tutorial days planned end of October beginning November in three cities in Asia. Information is now becoming available for this:

Oct 30, Tokyo:

Nov 1, Taipei:

Nov 3, Singapore:

More information coming soon.

BPM Standards Tutorials, Sept 29, Germany

Key members of the BPM standards community are coming together in Mainz Germany on September 29 to present six hour-long tutorials on subjects relevant to getting BPM system to work together. The tutorials range from general overview of the BPM market, to specific detailed presentations on standards. For those vendors who are already familiar with BPM there is an interactive XPDL design strategy session to discuss specific implementation approaches.

This is presented as part of Business Process Management 2006 which is a four day event, the BPM Standards will be presented on the last day, Friday. While the first three days are primarily in German, the BPM Standards day will be presented exclusively in English.

The schedule is:

  • 09:00 Welcome and Introduction
  • 09:10-10:00 BPMN/XPDL overview
  • 10:00-10:45 BPMN/XPDL details
  • 11:15-12:00 Human BPM (workflow) vs. EAI BPM (Service Orchestration)
  • 12:00-13:00 Lunch
  • 13:00-13:45 What is BPM? What is Workflow? The Business Value of BPM & Workflow.
  • 14:00-14:45 Relationship between BPM and SOA – How to leverage what you have.
  • 15:15-16:00 XPDL vs. BPEL
  • 16:00-16:30 Panel Session, Q&A, Roundup, Feedback

The presenters include Jon Pyke (WfMC Chair), Robert Shapiro (Global360), Keith Swenson (Fujitsu), Saša Bojanic (ProZone), Justin Brunt (TIBCO), Ken Mei (Global 360), Philippe Betschart (W4 Global), Philip Larson (Appian Corp), Thomas Olbrich (Chair Business Process Management 2006), and draws upon work created and helped along by the Workflow Management Coalition.

Here is a detailed schedule of the presentations. Hope to see you there!