IBM’s BPM BlueWorks

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WS-BPEL 2.0 for SOA Composite Applications with IBM WebSphere 7

WS-BPEL 2.0 for SOA Composite Applications with IBM WebSphere 7

Define, model, implement, and monitor real-world BPEL 2.0 business processes with SOA-powered BPM

  • Develop BPEL and SOA composite solutions with IBM’s WebSphere SOA platform
  • Automate business processes with WS-BPEL 2.0 and develop SOA composite applications efficiently
  • Detailed explanation of advanced topics, such as security, transactions, human workflow, dynamic processes, fault handling, and more—enabling you to work smarter

 

Appendix

        Read more about this book      

(For more resources on IBM, see here.)

The core intent of BPM BlueWorks is not only to allow you to quickly ramp onto BPM, but also to allow you to:

  • Collaborate with a vast community and leverage pre-built business strategy maps, capability maps, processes, and measures
  • Leverage industry-specific content provided by IBM and created by others to understand the value of BPM
  • Use cloud based, no-installation needed, easy on-ramp to IBM BPM suite to test and deploy process
  • Capture business intent, capabilities, and process in the cloud

In BPM BlueWorks, the Business Design spaces provide the web-based, collaborative environment for designing and building business documents as a part of the solutions or applications you intend to build. These business documents allow you to visually represent and communicate your business strategies, capabilities, processes, and your future business direction. Using the business design widgets, you can:

  • Define a business strategy using strategy maps (associated goals, measures, strengths, and threats)
  • Design a business structure using capability maps
  • Design a process using process maps that are based on the Business Process Modeling Notation (BPMN) standard
  • Visually represent how your processes collaborate with other internal and external processes
  • Create and reuse a standard business vocabulary to store standard terms, roles, business items, and messages
  • Build service documents to specify service operations that can be reused in process maps
  • Build organization charts to represent the structure of your business and assign the appropriate process and capability-level responsibilities for different units within your organization

Anyone can sign up with BPM BlueWorks (the first registered user for a company or group becomes the BPM BlueWorks administrator for that company/group. Subsequent registrations for the company/group are approved by the administrator) by going to www.bpmblueworks.com.

For the purposes of the Employee on-boarding application, we will use BPM BlueWorks to visually document our business strategy, capabilities, and processes that will come together to realize this application. These will be before we actually implement the BPEL-based process in WID.

BPM BlueWorks has no runtime affinity to WPS. It allows you to create process models using the BPMN notation. Using WebSphere Business Modeler, these BPMN models can be exported into an executable BPEL.

Organization chart

In BPM BlueWorks, you can create an organization chart to depict the various departments or organizational units and associate a set of roles included in that organization unit. For the purposes of our scenario, Employee on-boarding, the following screenshot shows a slice of the AlphaBetaTheta Inc’s organization chart with the units and roles that participate in the automation of this scenario:

Strategy maps

The strategy map is a visual tool for defining, planning, and communicating the overall strategy of an organization. It provides a clear picture of the overall objectives or goals of the organization (Where are we going?), the actions that are planned to achieve those goals (How are we getting there?), and the means by which the achievement of those goals will be measured (How will we know we are there?). A strategy map can be created at different levels of the organization, and each level’s map can be defined with the overall strategy map in mind. Using the strategy map as a reference, all members of the organization can make decisions that align with the overall strategy.

In AlphaBetaTheta Inc’s case, let us draw a strategy map that clearly defines the vision, strength, weakness, opportunities, goals, and associated actions to perform. Shown in the following screenshot is the strategy map for Employee On-Boarding automation. It describes the set of weaknesses that are forcing AlphaBetaTheta Inc. to go for this BPM-based automation, and their strategy to tackle them. The goals that must be achieved for the strategy to be successful are outlined along with the actions that will be taken to achieve these goals. Management will know that the specified goals have been achieved when the targets for the associated measures have been reached.

Capability maps

Business capabilities basically tell that as an organization what functions you provide or the capabilities you need to run your business. It provides a layout of what kind of business an organization does, services it offers to its customers, or the operational functions it performs for employees. These capability maps are useful for analyzing and modeling a particular business in terms of its capabilities, competencies, their relationships, and dependencies. They are the precursors to the business processes. You can create capability maps in BlueWorks that an organization offers and can nicely categorize them under several levels. Business capabilities can be linked to measures, which represent the target performance levels that are defined in a related strategy map.

Business Processes depicts the set of activities that are needed to realize these capabilities. While processes (how) can change, business capabilities (what) for the most part do not change.

Now for our scenario, let us start brainstorming and list the capabilities that are needed from a HRMS point of view. In the following screenshot, we have laid out some of the HRMS capabilities (the three different levels) that are needed for AlphaBetaTheta Inc. and you can see where Employee On Boarding (L2) fits in the overall context under Staffing & Recruitment (L1). We have also expanded the Employee On Boarding capability to its next level (L3).

You can also associate a capability map with business processes that implement the capability so that you can plan for the set of processes that will be affected by a change to the capability. Shown in the following screenshot is how we mapped the Employee On-Boarding capability to an end-to-end business process map that we are going to create in the next section named Employee On-Boarding End-2-End Process.

While doing such a brainstorming activity, we can perform a gap analysis, mapping their business capabilities to identify the capabilities they currently have in their customer service area, and determining what kind of capabilities they need to implement the proposed change.

Capability maps can also make use of entries that you have defined in your business vocabulary documents, such as technical terms or standard role definitions. By referencing entries defined in your vocabulary, you can ensure that document reviewers and readers share a common interpretation for the terms used in your capability map. You can also link to a role defined in your vocabulary to indicate who should be the owner of a particular capability.

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