• The MicroGuide to Process and Decision Modeling in BPMN/DMN: Building More Effective Processes by Integrating Process Modeling with Decision Modeling
    The MicroGuide to Process and Decision Modeling in BPMN/DMN: Building More Effective Processes by Integrating Process Modeling with Decision Modeling
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Introducing the Process Modeling Foundation

Introducting the process modeling foundation (PMF).

A by result of years of working with BPMN process modeling, we have created the PMF as an outline for methods that progressively adapt to project needs. The PMF directs process model construction from the earliest strategy phase to the goal: execution. In short, there are no wasted efforts.

Modeling Maturity

In process modeling, your organization likely seeks improved performance and alignment or reengineered processes. More often, it is the decisions that need improvement. There are 5 layers of a BPMN process modeling framework (PMF). In the first layer, core processes activities and flows are modeled. In the next, key decisions are identified. Understanding arises with increasing and detailed process modeling. We encourage you to start process modeling by defining core business processes.

In your joint application design sessions (JAD), firms often do 'happy days' use case scenarios, business modeling or creating workflow diagrams in Visio, or combinations of all of these. These use cases (and business cases) haphazardly discover more (or less) information than defined in the PMF. Often, a use-case approach models too-many details of the processes. This is: from the core level through work flow scenario. This approach is often too ambitious and leads to erratic and unpredictable results. Processes steps are confused with business rules. There is a tendency to cling to old, batch oriented patterns. JAD Participants get bored and frustrated.

A 'happy-day path' only considers flows that occur when the process manages no exceptions. You can use this approach by focusing on activities, gateways and flows. So, someday your team should visit 'unhappy' branches. Converting the use case or work-flow into the formal needs of a business process model in BPMN can be difficult.

As your organizations become more sophisticated in BPM, you will create process models directly in business process modeling notation (BPMN). Beyond the core business process, these JAD sessions are mostly working on process and scenario modeling in the PMF. As your experience grows, your organization will probably split the use case scenario into these levels.

Business analysts should become process analysts that build executable processes with BPMN in the process modeling framework. Until then, you need an method to transform the use case or Visio diagrams into an accurate BPMN model of these workflows. You might convert existing use-cases into BPM. Also, you might move the organization into a BPMN modeling tool.

If digitizing a process is your goal, then moving a use case into a BPMN business process model prepares the way for model execution, moving a use case through the layers of the PMF.

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