I’m listening in on Janelle Hill‘s keynote at the online BPM In Action conference: BPM Technology: From Best-of-Breed Tools to BPM Suites to Business Process Platforms. I heard her speak at the Gartner BPM summit last week; this is a completely different talk from what she gave there, but appears to be a nearly-identical slide set to that used in Marc Kerreman’s presentation.
She started off with a discussion of implicit versus explicit business process management: the implicit ones are buried within application silos, whereas the explicit ones are implemented within some sort of integration technology, such as BPM and its predecessors, workflow and EAI.
She’s now giving an explanation of Gartner’s shift in terminology from “pure-play BPM”, which she sees as “1st generation” (she named Savvion, Fuego, Metastorm, Ultimus and Lombardi as having started in this earlier category), to their current terminology, “BPM suites” or BPMS. Apparently, the suites are more well-balanced and can handle the system-to-system integration better than the pure-plays, although I think that this is much more of an evolution than an entire new category. The cynics in the crowd will say that Gartner just changes the name every few years to keep things fresh. 🙂
Hill is now talking about business process platforms, which is the topic of the webinar that I’m hosting at 1pm. Gartner’s definition:
The business process platform is a combined IT and business model that enables enterprises to accommodate rapid but controlled business process change through the use of integrated process composition technologies and the delivery of reusable business process components and their management.
It’s not clear to me how this differs from any other “roll your own” environment, although this has the blessing of somehow being an “architecture” as opposed to just a collection of services and tools. For example, Microsoft referred to their combination of SharePoint and BizTalk as a process platform at Gartner last week.
She makes a great point about how the best proof of concept is one that crosses physical boundaries: by crossing functional/people boundaries, the POC will almost certainly also cross information and system boundaries.
Unfortunately, Janelle was dropped off the line when the Q&A started, leaving us only with the IBM sponsors.
The replay of the webinar should be available soon if you missed it live.