A week ago today, I was in a tutorial by Roger Burlton of the Process Renewal Group on Enterprise Business Architecture: Strategy, Process and Capabilty Alignment while at the BPMG conference in London. He made a great analogy regarding performance measures: knowing the final score doesn’t tell you if it was a good game. (Although after once watching the Blue Jays lose 22-2, I posit that you could have told that it was a crappy game by the score alone.) Roger was one of many people at the conference who spoke about BPM in the context of measuring business goals. To quote Terry Schurter, who I heard speak the following day at his session BPMS – Selection by Business Value, “goals that can’t be measured aren’t goals”.
All this shows that BPM is finally creeping out of departments and into the mainstream of the enterprise. I read a post about a CEO’s view of BPM as discussed at a recent CEO roundtable today on the Milestone Group’s Thoughts On The Tech Industry blog that really nailed it:
BPM, or Business Process Management is the fasting growing segment in the BI / Data Management market sector. Growing out of departmental process management initiatives, the key driver now is to integrate across the enterprise, and to provide scorecards, reports, and other “C Level” deliverables with more confidence, so that predictive modeling and optimization initiatives are really based on the most complete and highest quality set of data available in the enterprise.
The CEOs consider BPM as a feed for enterprise BI/performance management, which is completely accurate — after all, why else would you be doing BPM if not to improve performance, and why would you be doing anything to improve performance if you weren’t also including it in your enterprise performance measures?
I just spent an enjoyable hour on Skype with Ethan Johnson of The Vision Thing while he interviewed me for a podcast about BPM. It did make me aware, however, that my oratory style involves a lot of hand gestures, although apparently that’s a good thing.
Watch his blog for the podcast later this week (I’ll also post a link here).
Just catching up on the week’s email that I had no time to answer, and noticed that the Earth Observatory‘s pictures of the week included one of London. If you know where to look, you can see Portman Square where the conference was held this week — a little square of greenery just to the northeast of Hyde Park.
You can subscribe to a weekly email that contains links to some very cool satellite images from the home page of the Earth Observatory site. I used to write software for analyzing satellite images so find this a particularly good distraction, but some of my non-remote-sensing friends also enjoy it.
If you missed BPM 2005 this week in London, you can attend the 3rd Annual Business Process Management Summit later this month in Las Vegas run by IQPC. BPMG is listed as a media partner and is providing only one speaker (according to the brochure), so this is in no way the same as the London event, but looks to have some excellent content as well.
When I started this blog a couple of months ago, I didn’t give a lot of thought to naming it, and decided just to be descriptive: hence “Sandy’s Biz Blog”. Can you tell that I’m an engineer and not a marketer?
My inner marketing voice spoke up this week — part of the overactive synapse response to the stimulating conference environment — and I had an overwhelming urge to rebrand. Since I’ve been spending a lot of time thinking about how BPM intertwines with EA, I’m giving a nod to Zachman with the new name, Column 2. (For those of you who aren’t EA aficionados, column 2 in the Zachman framework is where the process models live; although BPM is bigger than just column 2, I thought that it was a cool name.)
If you subscribe to this site, you can change to the new FeedBurner feed location here, although I’ll keep the old one active too.
Another funny thing from yesterday at BPM 2005: at a BPM standards panel session that included representatives from BPMI, WfMC, OMG and OASIS, Dave Petraitis from OASIS took great exception to an audience member’s suggestion that a standard could be biased in favour of a particular vendor. C’mon Dave, why do you think that vendors sit on a standards committe? It’s not purely altruistic, and they’re not just there to learn about the standard so that they can incorporate it into future products; they’re there, in part, to attempt to influence the standard to their way of doing things, both to make it easier for them to conform and to provide them with some competitive advantage.
Also heard Martyn Ould speak yesterday afternoon, and went online to buy his book from Amazon with hopes that it will be waiting for me when I get home.
Between the conference, friends, travelling and keeping up with the news from home, no time to blog until now. BPM 2005 is working out to be a very rewarding conference: some great presentations and networking with old friends, new acquaintances and BPM thought leaders who I have only ever met electronically before this week.
One thing from yesterday that I would not have missed: Peter Fingar was to present one of the keynote speeches, but at the last minute was unable to fly over. However, he used Skype to call into the presentation PC (which was connected to the room’s AV system) and give his talk, someone else flipped his slides for him, and with the lights turned low, it was easy to forget that he wasn’t in the room. Kudos to Peter and to Roger Burlton (who played “Vanna White” for him with the slides) for coming up with a creative solution to what could have been a disappointment for all.
More later tonight or tomorrow when I’ve had a chance to digest the three days, but I have to say that this has been a great catalyst for my creative spark, and I’m brimming with ideas. I’ve been thinking about BPM and EA together for quite a while, and have heard several things this week that shows me that others are thinking the same thing.
When I posted about software testing, I never imagined that I would be so blatantly in violation of good testing principles: I added Google ads that were slightly too wide for my right sidebar, and on Internet Explorer, they made the entire sidebar shift to the bottom of the page after all the content. On Firefox, which I use, it looks fine. My only excuse is that it’s been so long since I gave up coding for pure analysis and design that I’ve become lazy about cross-platform testing, which is a pretty poor excuse.
Note to self: always test template changes on both Firefox and IE.
My formerly bandwidth-challenged friends now have wireless broadband in the house, so I’m online in London and loving it. More tomorrow after BPM 2005 day 1.
Thomas over at the Workflows – Collaboration Technology blog gave me a new title this week: BPM guru.
Although I recently changed my title to read “Strategic IT Planner/Architect” after being dissed for using the C-word, I think I like “BPM guru” better.
I’m headed for the BPMG conference in London. I’ll try to blog some daily notes about the conference; I’m staying with bandwidth-challenged friends, but there is wireless connectivity at the conference site.
At most conferences, presentation materials are handed out on CD, which is my preferred method of receiving them since my paper filing space is reserved for things that can’t be easily scanned. As an added bonus, BPMG has made most of these materials available online to attendees ahead of time: I can download and review them at my leisure (such as on the flight over), or even print them to take to the conference if I decide not to carry my laptop every day.
If you’re at the conference, look me up.