Business Process Automation

Refers to the use of computer systems and software to automate a process. Processes can be completely automated, so no human intervention is required, or semi-automated, when some human intervention is required to make decisions or handle exceptions. Techniques used for BP Automation, include workflow, BP-XML languages, ERP, and software development and EAI.

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Vintage Old Stock is a fictional antique car-restoration business that has implemented BPM to improve its core processes of customer service, quoting of restoration jobs and gaining visibility into the turnaround time for a restoration job.

VOSton Mutual is a fictional insurance company specializing in personal property lines of insurance. As the company has grown, so too has the number of claims. To streamline the claims process, customers may submit new claims directly. ActiveVOS is deployed to orchestrate and co-ordinate the claims process.

See how to use the ActiveVOS designer to create BPMN 2.0 compliant business processes.

Find out how to use the ActiveVOS designer to make executable business processes ready for deployment.

Analyst Sandra Rogers says that "organizations are discovering that the use of more visual and self-documenting solutions can better ensure that requirements are commonly understood and agreed upon, and measure if certain business goals met. Utilizing a BPMS like ActiveVOS can help individuals capture current and future states. It allows for multiple and concurrent cycles while designing and enhancing business processes. Because of this, BPMS software can greatly impact overall business results."

A survey of the vendors featured in the Ovum Decision Matrix report and other prominent BPM vendors reveal the very positive news that BPM is one of the few rapidly growing enterprise software markets. This report explores the competitive dynamics within the BPM market, and helps businesses select a vendor based on its technology strength, reputation among customers, and impact on the market. Ovum provides a complete view of vendor capabilities and advises on those that businesses should consider.

This paper describes how ActiveVOS makes it easy to use service-oriented standards to combine people, processes and systems into a unified solution that delivers on the promise of business process management.

Analyst David S. Linthicum explains that "the value of Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) is the concept of agility, or the ability to limit risk through the management of change. Today, many enterprises are fighting to make this a reality, yet few approach SOA using the right methodologies and technology, and most have yet to define the real value of SOA and/or agility."

Forrester Researchís Randy Heffner offers guidance on how to create a holistic approach to detailing how SOA and BPM can help you build your digital business. Using a few basic concepts, itís possible to implement a rationalized, cost-effective set of technologies that take advantage of modern computing. Active Endpoints CTO Dr. Michael Rowley demonstrates how the ActiveVOS BPMS leverages these core ideas to build compelling process applications.

Bloor Research recommends Active Endpoints' visual orchestration product for enterprises that are looking at BPMS to help them get control of their business processes.

In this webcast replay, you can see how the ActiveVOS BPMS uses Actuate BIRT to deliver integrated reporting. And, you will learn how it is possible to put even greater control of reporting and analysis directly into the hands of the same users who designed an organization's automated processes.

Listen to this†informative session by Neil Ward-Dutton, Research Director, MWD Advisors, and Michael Rowley, CTO, Active Endpoints, about "What It Really Takes to Collaborate." They explore the organizational, cultural and technical elements that combine to create successful BPM deployments.

In the second episode in the series, "How to Explain BPMN to Business Users," Michael and Sandy explore just how much BPMN business users should know. They answer questions including "What makes BPMN the standard in documentation and communication?"; "How much BPMN is just enough to make business users dangerous?" and "What are the useful bits of BPMN that business users should know?" A demonstration of ActiveVOS, a BPMS that features a BPMN 2.0 modeler the whole team can use and serves the needs of the entire project team, including architects, project managers, developers and business analysts, is included.

In the third, and final, episode in the series, "Five Things You Should Never, Ever Try in Process Development," Michael and Sandy explore the most common pitfalls teams face as they begin using BPM techniques to develop and deploy process applications. Learn how other organizations have addressed these snags by carefully selecting processes to be modeled and deployed. A demonstration of ActiveVOS, a BPMN 2.0-based BPMS that will help development teams avoid these and other common traps in process development, is included.

Neil-Ward Dutton, Research Director of MWD Advisors, and Dr. Michael Rowley, CTO, Active Endpoints, presented a practical webinar on the theory and practice of BPM and process automation. Neil explained the history of applications development and how the old way of developing requirements and then "throwing them over the wall" is no longer viable. Michael described how ActiveVOS, Active Endpoints' BPMS, and its process automation capabilities, easily define the workflow required and immediate runtime using BPMN, BPEL and other web services open standards.

ActiveVOS partner, T-Impact, has deep expertise in BPM in industries like telecom. In this webinar, they detail their approach to BPM and how they use ActiveVOS to deliver process applications for their clients.

Michael Rowley describes how to use test suites to ensure that our critical business processes continue to work as expected over time. The key to success is to take a leaf from the book of software engineering and regression testing best practices. This is because an executable business process is just like any other form of good code after all. Business processes should therefore have tests that guarantee they work as expected the first time, and suites of tests to ensure that changes to processes do not unintentionally break working aspects. Michael Rowley also explains both black box and white box testing approaches that should be used when we develop and deploy any business process.

In this episode of CTO Tuesdays, Michael Rowley discusses the similarity between sequence flows (arrows) in a business process and the old GO TO statement from programming languages.

In this week's CTO Tuesday's webcast, Michael Rowley argues (and demonstrates) that any web service created using calls to other web services, even when the service being created is entirely synchronous, is best created using a BPEL-based BPMS (preferably with BPMN 2.0 notation).

Handling versioning issues correctly in a service-oriented architecture is hard to do right. It is easy to inadvertently deploy new versions of schemas, WSDLs or process definitions that interfere with existing working services. In this week's CTO Tuesday, Michael Rowley describes an approach to versioning that makes it much easier to avoid such conflicts.

Related Terms

Asynchronous Process, Batch Processing, Business Analytics, Business Process, Business Process Change Cycle, Business Process Design or Redesign, Business Process Execution Language for Web Services (BPEL, BPEL4WS), Business Process Improvement (BPI), Business Process Management (BPM), Business Process Outsourcing