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Live from Gartner Symposium ITxpo - The New Business Architecture: Enterprise Architecture and BPM

I am attending Gartner Symposium and ITxpo this week and blogging as I go.

Robert Handler presented on The New Business Architecture: Enterprise Architecture and BPM. Robert made some interesting points

  • Automating a bad process is bad, automating a good one is good so fix a process first, then automate
  • EA and BPM are on a collision course for various reasons
  • Archiecture is a bridge between business strategy and implementation - most strategies fail due to implementation failure not bad strategies
  • Enterprise Architecture includes various viewpoints including a business context (as well as information and technology) and the intersection of these in a solution viewpoint as must mesh business with technology and information.
  • Change is hard - both business change and technology/information change
  • Many different layers of abstraction within each perspective, all of which connect both within a perspective and between them
  • BPM is the management of all of the processes supporting a business transaction from the beginning to the end while applying the organization's rules
  • BPM Suites becoming more complete, more useful, better at handling events and exceptions etc. as well as simulation, scenario management.
  • BPM can have a dramatic impact on architecture but once the pilot suceeds, the real work begins
  • Beware the tendency to get sucked into modeling and BPM, like EA, can suffer from this
  • He emphasized the value of using these approaches to improve processes and demonstrate compliance. Me I think compliance requires rules too.
  • EA and BPM are going to merge around models of optimized processes that can be automated but only if you think about sharing models and modeling standards.

I think he is right about the intersection of these approaches - it seems unlikely that one would be successful in widespread adoption of BPM without a clear architecture and that BPM might be an effective consumer of EA artifacts. I also agree that making sure you don't keep asking people about the same process for different perspectives (Six Sigma, BPM, EA) but combine these approaches.

BTW Fair Isaac is at booth 305 and I am presenting at 12:15 on Wednesday on Real-World Experience in Applying Business Intelligence to Business Processes

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Comments

synaptus

I am very excited to see the discussion of EA and BPM coming together. The comment about "making sure you don't keep asking people about the same process for different perspectives (Six Sigma, BPM, EA) but combine these approaches" is very powerful. From a Business Architecture perspective, you have covered the process and technology dimensions. But it is also critical to remember the human dimension. Different jobs require different skills, organizational performance metrics, even different values and interests. Including the attributes of the human layer of business becomes even more important in instances where collaboration, creativity, coordination of ad-hoc work, and customer service play a critical role in the success of a process or capability. Putting this human or talent layer into the merged EA/BPM view removes the Kumbyah aspect of the people side while going a long way towards creating a pragmatic way to leverage the power of the people in the organization. While we're having conversations about Six Sigma, BPM, and EA, let's find out what skills, competencies, and experiences are necessary on the human side. When we change processes the required skills, competencies and experiences often change as well. Including these in the architecture model let you manage these with intention.

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