Introduction to AWD 10

I’ve had a bit of a remote demo of AWD prior to the conference, but wanted to see how DST presents AWD at a basic level to their customers. They highlighted a number of features:

  • Inbound scanned documents, faxes, emails, tweets and other sources
  • Forms builder for data capture user interface
  • Process design (apparently with BPMN), including service calls and subprocesses
  • Work assignment
  • Audit and quality review history
  • Correspondence generation, based on templates for standard parts of the letter, and allowing for ad hoc text
  • Integration with customer database and business rules
  • Monitoring dashboards for individuals and teams

I’m not seeing any unusually innovative BPM capabilities in AWD 10 compared to other BPMS, but this reminds me a lot of how BPM is presented at SAP conferences, for much the same reasons: these customers are using DST products that run their current business effectively, and the agile process-centric BPM environment is new (and likely a bit scary) to them. However, by focusing on things that really matter to these BPM newbies – transaction processing, ability to quickly change process models, quality, work monitoring – they’re showing the inherent value in a more flexible environment over their older AWD code-driven environment.

The challenge for DST will be whether these customers will make the jump to AWD 10, or decide to evaluate other BPM systems if this is a complete application rewrite from existing AWD platform versions. If there is a great deal of customer loyalty, or the customers are bound to other DST systems that will integrate more easily with AWD 10, this may not be a case of offering the best BPMS on the market, just the best BPMS for existing DST customers.

9 thoughts on “Introduction to AWD 10

  1. Sandy, the customers will make the jump because they do not have a choice. The rewrite is mostly on the AWD server coming out of the dark ages. It is the same workflow process except it is using a process design and event driven conditions for process execution. All the peripherals still run on Windows 2003 and earlier. Their documentation references things like .Net Framework 4 and old stuff. It is as if they will keep running on old platforms forever. At the same time they add new components and try to make the integration seamless. It would seem that a lot of customers may be waiting for better documentation and a larger base until they can’t wait anymore.

  2. Gato, thanks for your comment. I’ll be back at the AWD conference in a month so will have a chance for an update to see how the customers are coming along with migration.

    I agree that they don’t have a choice to move off the old platform, but they do have a choice on how to move forward: AWD 10, or some other BPMS. If the migration from older versions to AWD 10 is difficult enough, it will cause some customers to shop around before they make a decision.

  3. It shouldn’t be difficult since it is all database driven. It is all in there. It is going to be more of a (hate to use this word, but for this it is appropriate) paradigm shift because a lot of their customers are meat and potato IT shops. In 2010 there were less than 10 bonafide installations (outside DST’s installations) and today that number has increased. I like their energy and their willingness to consider suggestions and not trying to be what they are not – a full blown BPMS system. They could not have picked a more convoluted dashboard solution as OBIEE. Please post back with what you learn from the conference.

  4. I will be posting from the conference, although I’m speaking there so my posts may be a bit sparse.

    DST is trying to position AWD10 as a BPMS, although more of an out-of-the-box process application solution rather than a toolkit. They certainly seem to have happy customers.

  5. Corticon is a good product, and very easy to integrate — not sure why you think it’s a mystery that AWD customers would use it. Although Corticon was bought by Progress a couple of years ago, Progress divested Savvion (its BPMS holding) so there is no conflict, unlike using ILOG or others that have been acquired by large BPMS vendors, hence may not favor integration with other BPMS.

  6. I just have not used it or done a deep dive. Sounds like you have. There was a lot of hype last winter before it was acquired. I am curious if there is any special hooks to Corticon or is it just a standard integration as if you would to anything else. Thank you Sandy

  7. Corticon has a pretty easy way for business users to create rules with decision tables, then they can be exposed as web services to plug into BPMS’ like AWD. Not sure if they have any closer integration with AWD, but the standard methods are pretty good.

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