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From Karl Walter Keirstead: Would you say that BPM absorbed adaptive case management or did ACM absorb BPM?
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Digital Transformation absorbed both.
BPM was in the last 20 years absorbing and curating many disciplines, now it is the time BPM being merger under a new discipline with a wider spectrum
  1. Caspar Jans
  2. 2 years ago
  3. #5671
Digital transformation, to me, is nothing more than companies finding new ways of doing business digitally and therefore cheaper or as a way to differentiate themselves from competition. Nevertheless, digital transformation in my opinion resides on the tactical level (tops) and not on the strategic level where BPM should start (and most of time actually doesn't start, and that is one of the root causes why so many BPM initiatives fail if you ask me).
BPM is as wide as it gets as it spans all forms of process management & execution, including via digital means. So I respecfully disagree that DT absorbs both :-)
Agree with Casper BPM is discipline (not a technology) with no limitations other than practicalities of being limited in delivery capabilities in software. No need to think of a wider spectrum....
  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 1
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
This is a tough one as BPM and ACM both take on a slightly different perspective. For me, cases are the "things" (or content if you like, for example the purchase order, the insurance claim, the sales order etc) that flow through a process and based on that you could conclude that BPM absorbed ACM.

On the other side you see that some companies take the ACM approach and use the life cycle stages of a case as a leading principle and design the process around that and from this angle you might be tempted to say that ACM absorbed BPM.

Now, my personal opinion is that BPM is a philosophy, a management principle and therefore by defnition overarches the more specific variants of process management, including case management.
BPM is all about mindset first and toolset later....much later
I like "BPM ... overarches the more specific variants of process management, including [individual] case management"

In other words, "this is how we run our business in the operations area"

It fits well with RBV (Resource Based View) being "this is how we run our business in the strategy area"

For me, your "ACM absorbed BPM" puts the focus on deliverables, putting ACM/BPM center stage for a corporation's operational contribution to building, sustaining and augmenting competitive strategy.

Cases have goals/objectives (you issue the PO, you settle the insurance claim, you accept the terms of the sales order, then manufacture and ship) .

Cases host BPM template instances - plan side BPM "best practice" flowgraphs cannot be modified by any Case (only the BPM "best practice" librarian can do this).

Cases typically work on process fragment template instances (reason: most work is not concerned with "end-to-end processes") so the only objective you could hope to define for a BPM "process' is to get to the end node of the template instance in the Case run time environment.

The run-time scenario is multiple "process fragment" template instances get executed to the point where the Case Manager can declare that it is time to close the Case. Users, software, or external imports invoke process fragment templates to generate private instances of templates. Users can skip, jump, exit EXCEPT that in-place rules prevent extreme unwanted excursions away from corporate "best practices"
  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 2
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
IT professionals should avoid all these three-letter acronyms that have been pushed to markets by linguistically-dilligent, yet slightly daft, marketeers.

In the current borsch of sinking and rising tech and thought frameworks, it is a terrible waste of time and runs the risk of alienating business customers.

(BTW, in a borsch, has the beetroot absorbed the carrots, who absorbed the tomatoes, who melted the celery, with a smidge of garlic? Does it help any customer to know that?)
CEO, Co-founder, Profluo
FYI, IMHO I agree with Bogdan ;-)
Bogden is right IT have indeed avoided BPM....at great cost to business as they sold expensive hard coded inflexible ERP and silo systems. BPM uses business language and logic something that IT just do not understand! Next generation Software supporting BPM will change that and put business back in control of their operational business processes putting users first.....Should also bring greater assurance that all is data correctly recorded and tracked who did what when.....
  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 3
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BPM is a trio: a discipline, a tool and and a practice. BPM as discipline covers formal flow-charts and haotic activities. BPM as a tool already shows many capabilities of ACM. And BPM practices are adapting for cases.

Is DT a discipline? not yet
Is DT a tool? no
Is DT a practice? maybe

  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 4
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BPM emerged 20 years ago whereas ACM a few years later?

BPM is a discipline with no limitations other than software capabilities which are always changing. ACM is specific software solution for Case Management with key Adaptive characteristics such as UI which adapt to specific user needs and support for ready change to adapt to new circumstances.

BPM can drive build of ACM significantly aided no code allowing business to build not old IT. So they are "complimentary" each having their mission....
  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 5
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Processes (to bring cases to a good end) come in different types of flexibility.

Who cares how vendors, analysts and commentors on BPM.com call it?
Sharing my adventures in Process World via Procesje.nl
  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 6
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
That’s a really good question and one with which the WfMC Awards committee indeed wrestled a few months ago. We were looking at the trends from past award entries and seeing increasing overlap between the two main awards programs of ACM and BPM.

There was a long discussion over several meetings … we ended up consolidating these two long-running awards programs under the umbrella of Business Transformation Awards in keeping with the rapid progress of associated supporting technologies in this business arena.

This new program still includes the existing major categories of BPM and ACM and creates a new program for BT Personality of the Year.

Yes, we did consider calling it the Digital Transformation Awards, but decided that Business Transformation more aptly described what we saw as the future. One of the main criteria within both ACM and BPM Awards is how well the entrant achieved significant competitive advantage.

In our opinion; “Business Transformation (BT) aligns people, organizational processes and technology initiatives of a company with its business strategy and vision with the aim of achieving significant competitive advantages.”

We also see more companies are turning to the overall concept of business transformation and adopting it as an integral part of management in line with integrated offerings and BT / DT suites from technology providers.

Just FYI: Business Transformation Personality Awards of the Year is a completely new category, recognizing individual excellence and expanding on the existing Marvin L. Manheim Award for Significant Contributions in the Field of Workflow.

These awards celebrate the success, innovation and strategic vision of thought and corporate leaders across a wide variety of sectors and industries globally. Size of company is not a factor.

There are many individuals who frequent this forum who are eligible. You are invited to nominate yourself or another.

See more at http://btAwards.org

Layna Fischer
Awards Director, WfMC Awards for Excellence in Business Transformation.
  1. http://btAwards.org
@Layna. Excellent response.

Agree, it's all about "One of the main criteria within both ACM and BPM Awards is how well the entrant achieved significant competitive advantage."

Competitive advantage for for-profits means being the "leader of the pack". Competitive advantage for non-profits means "being the best you can be".

The thing about ACM is it takes nothing away from BPM - the core concept in ACM is you have goals/objectives that are achievable via some combination of ad hoc interventions and consistent use of "best practice" protocols.

We don't need to make a special case of "ad hoc" interventions.

Each ad hoc intervention is nothing more than a process of one step, so we can agree that Case Management is all about following "best practices" (following a template ) OR relying on experience, intuition, second opinions etc.

All of this comes around 360 degrees in that when experience, intuition, second opinions result in consistent behavior across Cases, we have incentive to encapsulate all of this as a new "best practice" or an improvement to an existing "best practices".

My current focus is on the use of predictive analytics to guide users at branching decision boxes along "best practice" pathways (i.e. 40% of the time they went that way) - it solves the AI problem where you had to have the expert beside you to interpret the AI recommendations.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 7
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
The answer will very likely depend to some degree on the market and its process maturity, measured by having a BPM CoE per company and other key indicators.
The more mature the market, the higher the likelihood of ACM being a BPM derived yet separated entity. However, in terms of possible absorption, the only scenario that I would think is possible, would be BPM "internalizing" ACM - not the other way around.
For ACM to establish itself, as its own technology or even methodology, a lot of momentum would be required. The most common catalyst for that to happen, in my opinion, are regulatory requirements forcing forcing businesses to comply at on hand but also to conceptualize much of the workload as cases (as opposed to structured, linear process transactions in BPM) on the other hand.
NSI Soluciones - ABPMP PTY
  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 8
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Re the establishment of ACM, our transition point occurred in 2010 after reading Keith Swenson's "Mastering the Unpredictable"


We absorbed BPM into ACM, then added RALB (Resource Allocation, Leveling and Balancing) to allow organizations to set a focus on workload management across Cases.

The final tweak was to blend in FOMM (Figure of Merit Matrices) for non-subjective assessment of progress toward individual Case closure.

Nothing has really changed from that time in terms of our understanding\use of ACM.

I see from the responses here above that the BPM community is nowhere close to a consensus on how to "manage" work.

It's interesting to me, coming from a CPM background, to be unable to recall even one group across customers, contractors, suppliers, project managers and engineering consultants where there were issues with what CPM could/could not do, or, how to go from plan side to run-time side.

The reason was the flowgraph (CPM diagram) WAS the Project. Any meeting room you went into had a 15 foot CPM diagram on the wall, marked up weekly with a felt pen to show current progress (or lack of progress) toward THE objective, which, for most projects was to "cut the ribbon".

In the case of CPM, the method was central to all work, no exceptions.
  1. http://www.kwkeirstead.wordpress.com
  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 9
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Good question. Too bad it has to be asked though. @Bogdan captures the sense of "marketing-ese" that plagues the field. In other words, powerful technologies are reduced to marketing labels. And in the process, the real power of business process technology (and adaptive case management technology) is obscured.

In my BPM.com article series BPM Technology As Revolutionary Enabler I highlighted why BPM technology is both unique and important. BPM technology has very specific technical content, based on mathematics. ACM can be seen as an extension of BPM theory. And then one could have a definitive understanding of exactly how BPM and ACM are related. [To answer the specific question here, one needs to split the question into two -- (1) a question about marketing and product packaging and (2) a question about technology.]

In the absence of an acknowledgement of the uniqueness and importance of BPM and ACM technology per se, pragmatism rules. And we have tacit knowledge and we "get things done". This is not in the slightest to denigrate the good work that diligent and dedicated practitioners do with BPM and ACM technologies. But it's like diligent and dedicated accountants before the professionalization of the field and universal adoption of debits and credits (several hundred years ago). There is a better way.

Powerful technologies can be used in powerful ways. And marketers have an important role bringing this message to market. Probably marketers will have to put on their "product marketing" hat though. The win lies in linking all the way thru, from technology to the use case to the business case. Don't give in to the "lure of the generic".
@John. I like ".. linking the technology all the way through the use case to the business case"

One approach that seems to work is to pitch industry/application specific solutions, with casual reference to the underlying technologies. Indirectly referencing the technologies seems to increase confidence levels in the solution pitch i.e. that there is substance to the solution.

See a writeup on how to implement Crime Reduction Initiatives within Police Departments

  1. John Morris
  2. 2 years ago
  3. #5679
Thanks Walter - FYI I updated the stack sequence to emphasize the inclusion of technology - based on your note I think this is how you read it anyway ... ☺
@John... On "uniqueness and importance" . . . .

If I am selling management consulting, then the pitch is RBV (a method) followed by workflow/workload management to be provided by, yes, methods (BPM, RALB, FOMM), in a platform (ACM) capable of hosting these three methods. This gives the customer a strategy building solution and an operational efficiency/effectiveness solution.

If I am selling boxes to, say, IT, then it's free-form-search Kbases, followed by Mapping Software plus Workflow/Workload Management plus Portal Access plus Data Exchange software.

Most of the 'Users" today are logging in via VPN to an IIS Server, most of the bulk data in/out is handled by a Data Exchanger.

So, the "box configuration" requires five (5) modules

RBV, a method that needs technology
BPM, a method that needs technology
ACM, (ability to host BPM template instances, supports RALB, supports FOMM) a platform and method that needs technology
Portal Access which is technology
Data Exchange which is technology

Not mentioned except when asked and not an express part of any pitch is outreach/inreach to/from devices and this is accomplished in two ways a) a task along a workflow that references a URL or b) ordinary data exchange accomplished by our Data Exchanger.

IT has no problem whatsoever with boxes, so long as you show them seamless integration.

Digital Transformation becomes a one time jump-start project process that is best managed by CPM (plan, organize, monitor, control), with ongoing review/modernization after the initial project
  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 10
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
@David points re BPM out that "IT have indeed avoided BPM.", opting instead for " . . .expensive hard coded inflexible ERP and silo systems"

Part of the problem, I suspect, is that ERP came along earlier than BPM.

I totally understand that CEOs do not relate to pitches on operational methods like BPM but surely IT has a mandate to research operational methods/tools and put in place more integrative solutions than what they have IF an ROI submission demonstrates savings.

So, the question becomes, should IT relegate a failed/failing ERP to 'sunk cost" when exiting OR should an ROI lump in the amount of the original investment minus partial payback and encumber a BPM initiative with the exit cost of a prior ROI?

We should discuss this at another time.

Personally, I drag my heels on bailout requests before benefits have been achieved, but, in today's fast changing business environment it is more important than ever to "know when to hold, when to fold"
  1. http://www.keirstead.wordpress.com
  1. more than a month ago
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