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How important would you say business process integration is for today's enterprise?
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
In my view, process should be the focal point of business operations with a drive toward business process integration and automation. What are the underlying processes, who are the actors in the process (systems/applications included), and how do they all interrelate and interact with each other. We hear a lot about digital transformation which for many businesses is still focused on information gathering and management. While this is an important element, digital transformation cannot truly occur until processes are digital and process integration has taken hold.

That is my long way of saying business process integration is not only important but essential for businesses to digitally transform.
Bob Larrivee
President and Founder
Bob Larrivee Consultancy
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  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 1
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Very important! The biggest lens is enterprise to enterprise (e2e) view- business models are changing, organizations are connecting in various ways to develop new businesses, grow business and/or become more efficient. Look at the payment industry and how imbedded and connected payment mechanisms are in various processes across industries. Look at health and how many have imbedded onboarding, enrollment processes into client organizations, ie. new company employees sign up for health inside of company portal but really connecting to external health care company. Look at all the APIs in the app stores to create connections to processes and business function, ability for organizations to incorporate outside capabilities. I have found various industries looking at their respective businesses and finding strategies that are drive towards a 'connected' conglomerate, keeping at they do well and tying into other company's business capabilities. Business process and connectivity is the lever to realize that. On the same token, the other lens is internal- when you look internally at an organization the whole customer lifecycle and engaging the customer properly thru that set of activities requires real integration of business processes across the organization. Companies can't live in silos anymore.
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  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 2
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
The title of a 5 days old article in InfoQ.com "Experiences Moving from Microservices to Workflows" gives us a solid hope that business processes will be soon hotter than microservices.

The power of workflow has been (re)discovered, but no off-the-shelf products were used (they have developed their own DSL for workflow).

https://cdn-images-1.medium.com/max/800/1*y_tCEvWPn_-LQNtv4PTnag.png

Thanks,
AS
References
  1. https://www.infoq.com/news/2019/02/migrate-microservices-workflows
  2. https://medium.com/jettech/microservices-to-workflows-the-evolution-of-jets-order-management-system-9e5669bd53ab
Comment
  1. John Morris
  2. 4 months ago
  3. #5937
Fantastic article @Alexander. Can you comment regarding whether Jet reinvented the wheel? Could they have achieved all their goals with some off-the-shelf open source or commercial package?
@John, I added a para in the text because of this nice illustration.
@Alexander : ". . . .business processes will be soon hotter than microservices"

For me, one advances/helps the other.

The only deficiency with many microservices is there is no link option other than logging into a UI at the microservice.

This problem does not exist in industrial process control, so why do we have to have it in business process management?

As we automate processes, what we want is a way for a generic data exchanger to be able to message a microservice and get back a calculated/processing response at the data exchanger (for easy import to, say. a BPMs.

Maybe RPA can help.


  1. John Morris
  2. 4 months ago
  3. #5942
Extra chart @Alexander even better. So I tweeted this:
Evolve from #code to #microservices to #workflows - and even business #process. Achieve scalability, 93mm workflows! Dramatic positive effect on complexity manageability - f/#JamesNovino, @JetTechnology - http://bit.ly/2V6fqUf - Via @Samarin
@Karl - fully agree re "one advances/helps the other"
  1. David Chassels
  2. 4 months ago
  3. #5945
This workflow sounds complex in comparison to the simple linking tasks with powerful links which can set rules all created in graphical designer build where click and all ready to run. Using a declarative technique sees no coding or compiling makes support for inevitable change easy and all under business control.
The fact that they wrote their own DSL is, in my understanding, a signal that application development is ready for better use of business processes but the BPM industry has nothing to offer to such a customer.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 3
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Was just posting this today on LinkedIn:
https://www.wsj.com/articles/employees-are-accessing-more-and-more-business-apps-study-finds-11549580017

The number of software apps deployed by large firms across all industries world-wide has increased 68% over the past four years, reaching an average of 129 apps per company by the end of 2018


Also, most apps overlap in functionality across departmental silos (each with their favourite) and most apps don't talk to each other.
So, app rationalization policies pop up and knee jerk RPA interventions occur.

Such a fertile ground for an eventual end-to-end approach.

Call it BPM if you like.

I do. :D
CEO, Co-founder, Profluo
Comment
  1. John Morris
  2. 4 months ago
  3. #5938
Me too :)
  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 4
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
How important is "business process integration" to today's enterprise? How about "existentially important"?

Which means that business process integration is at the heart of the definition of the enterprise. We have explored elsewhere on BPM.com the economics of scale. Economist Ronald Coase famously stated that the size of an enterprise is determined by the cost of management. Outsourcing to specialists might be cheaper. But the search, transaction and management costs of services "outside the firewall" is much higher than the same costs for managing things inside the corporation. Technology, economics and law all interact to help define what make sense in terms of enterprise size at any point in time.

So what about business process integration? BPI technology ( including newly so-called "smart contracts" ) directly impacts on the costs and viability of managing a span of work processes. From the perspective of the work performed, an enterprise in flight is basically the sum of its processes. Better and easier process integration means that the economics of company size will change. For some organizations, this means that greater scale is possible -- Amazon and Walmart don't seem to have run into diminishing returns to scale. Paradoxically, better BPI technology may also mean that smaller organizations are also newly viable -- because smart contracts make it possible to thrive in a complex heterogenous ecosystem.

TWEET: How important is business #process #integration to today's enterprise? How about #existentially important? Along with #law and #economics, #BPM & #BPI #technology are key levers driving viable #businessmodels & #scale - http://bit.ly/2TXUJtB - @PSchooff @BPMdotcom #RonaldCoase
Comment
  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 5
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
For many companies the first and often most difficult steps to take is to change the mental processing from functional domains to end ot end processes. As long as you keep your business processes within one functional domain, their will be no need for integration. Once you start exploring the end to end perspective, organziations will discover the need for integration. It does pay off big time if you can define the roles in your organization only once and re-use where possible, or to define the syupporting application just once and re-use where possible.

In itself this is no rocket science and will not bring massive benefits, but once that information is being used in the management of change process (remember, the hard part, abouit processes, systems, organizations etc) then it becomes very quickly clear that it becomes much easier to determine the impact of an intended change, especially because of the integration across the buiness processes.

Now for the short version: business process integration is crucial for a mature BPM practice and a prerequisite for business process automation.
BPM is all about mindset first and toolset later....much later
Comment
  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 6
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Today's Enterprise is no different to yesterday's as process are vital just a pity yesterday of 40 years of IT has failed to recognise this important fact. As The focused with Digital now moves the focus to people and how they work and collaborate so at last processes are recognised as important to delivery and now driven directly by business knowledge. As to integration people and their processes drive any enterprise the focus becomes how to integrate legacy data etc. As I have said before business operational process must drive and be the master for creation of the new supporting systems with legacy integrated as the slave.
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  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 7
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
One process' output might be one of the inputs for another process. Within or outside your own company. So it's important to understand how processes relate to each other.
Sharing my adventures in Process World via Procesje.nl
Comment
  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 8
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
In chime with the expert consensus, business process integrations are absolutely crucial for most BPM solutions that are being implemented, nowadays. It may be of interest to look at the different dimensions such an integration might have. In general terms, I would argue that there are conceptual integrations which refer to some front are back-end interaction of systems, people, departments and other organizations with the company's processes. The more mapped out the network of different interacting workflows and value streams a enterprise can produce, the better will be the opportunities of reaping benefits from process automation and improvement projects.These visualizations will most certainly extend to process integrations of a more technical nature and which account for most of the automation effect, when it comes to BPM.
Especially at the beginning of continued improvement cycles, the biggest time savers will undoubtedly derive from the substitution of manual redundancies with process to system integrations, exchanging data streams trough the means of SOA - WSDL, (REST) API and also RPA of late.
Process integrations on a BI level are especially interesting when taking into account that many platform vendors starting featuring native gateways to Machine Learning providers, including AWS ML.
NSI Soluciones - ABPMP PTY
Comment
  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 9
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
"Business Process Integration" as in "building an inventory of best practices" is important but run-time "Business Process Compliance" is also important.

See a highly informative recent article by Max Tay.

Business Process Compliance Assurance

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/business-process-compliance-assurance-max-tay/
References
  1. http://www.kwkeirstead.wordpress.com
Comment
  1. David Chassels
  2. 4 months ago
  3. #5947
Karl
Thanks yes very interesting article! In line with a recent article I had published in CA magazine where I suggest that Accountants are well placed to now help business regain control (thus compliance) over the build of operational business processes. I think Max thinking is enhanced by the fact that now "Map is the App" and full audit trail of who did what when. Drop me email david.chassels@btinternet.com if you would like to see article.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. BPM Discussions
  3. # 10
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
I interpret the question as referring to all processes being interconnected ...primarily within an organisation but also with external parties..

My answer is Critical but rarely evidenced because the technology required to support it is not well understood.

At a BPM convention at the Moscone Convention Center some years ago the CIO of Chevron oil described how they had process mapped the entire organisation. At question time a lady congratulated him and asked if that meant they could now automate the organisation. His response was, "No, all we have is a plate of spaghetti." I have used that metaphor ever since to describe what you get when you don't have a framework (or model) to determine how processes integrate.

Another analogy I like to use is the human form in which the skeleton determines how the bits of body hang together and how our end-to-end systems support it. Imagine just having just a collection of fleshy components and systems without the predefined structure..
Comment
@Anthony . . Re Chevron Oil. 'some years ago"

The notion of "done", once an organization has mapped out its processes, is still around.

Today, many organizations have a focus on integrating processes when what they should be doing, in my view, is integrating tasks, some of which happen to be linked sets of tasks i.e. "process fragments", others, processes of one task each.

In ACM, users want/need to be able to work on a mix of structured and unstructured tasks.

The structured ones can readily be made available at an inventory of mapped, compiled, rolled out process fragment templates. An unstructured or ad hoc task is nothing more than a process fragment of one step. These too can be in the inventory.

Once you get beyond say 50 inventory items, you need smart assistance to pick processes that are context-situation-appropriate at the processing stage a Case may be at.

The scenario resolves to the user being able to thread together any mix of structured and unstructured work. With pre-processors in place at key tasks (all processes of one step, the first step and any structured process fragment sequence of tasks).

Under ACM, the processing instructions are a) follow the protocols or b) do what you like.

In theory, the end result is the same (i.e. completion) but efficiency and effectiveness are higher when available protocols are followed.
  1. John Morris
  2. 4 months ago
  3. #5943
@Anthony -- for sure "the plate for spaghetti". Even something as simple (well, relatively simple) as a B2B sales process somehow "looks like spaghetti". And this is without the question of integration. It's a challenge I think for a lot of process automation, you could call it the "last mile" of perception, or something. Except it's more like a millimeter of neurons.
  1. more than a month ago
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  3. # 11
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