Business Process Modeling Notation (BPMN)

Sep 06, 2021
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BPMS has evolved and has come a long way over the past one or two decades. It's quite interesting to take a peek into the BPMS journey then and now. Business needs and technology, both have gone through a huge change in the meantime.

Right since the earlier days of BPMS, I always found working in this space quite an intriguing thing. The very capability of BPM to model, design, automate, run and track any process seemed to be extremely useful.

Jul 05, 2021
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A diagram is a 2-dimensional representation of a story, which shows elements and their relationships on a single canvas. An element is shown on a single diagram. (To show the same element information on a 2 diagrams, the element is duplicated.) When the properties of a diagram element are changed, the change is reflected only on that diagram.

A model is a 3-dimensional representation of a collection of related stories, which captures diagram elements as model components. A component includes all element properties and relationships between different elements on all diagrams. A single model component can be shown as elements on several diagrams. A change to the properties of a diagram element or model component is reflected on every diagram where that component is displayed.

A model does not necessarily need to include any diagrams. Diagramming is the most common method for creating and maintaining model components, but the diagrams can be deleted without changing the model.

If a picture is worth a thousand words, then a diagram converts those words into a story. A model organizes those stories into a book.

Jun 14, 2020
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Business process mapping is the most indispensable technique for performance improvement and technology innovation initiatives. More than just boxes and arrows, the process map reveals the “magic” and wisdom of how and why work gets done.

Sadly, too many professionals give process mapping short shrift. Here are 10 tips that will ensure process mapping helps you achieve full potential from your improvement/innovation project.

Apr 19, 2020
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In the world of software development Use Cases are one of many very powerful techniques often used these days.  Use cases describe how a person or a system interacts with the solution being modeled/built to achieve a goal. Basically, it’s a step by step explanation of what a user can do and how the solution must respond.

As any other business analysis technique, use cases have their advantages and disadvantages. One of the main disadvantages of use cases is that this technique is not graphical – a use case diagram is but use case descriptions are not, and use case descriptions really lack of visualization especially if there are multiple alternative flows and exception flows that branch out and then loop back into the main one.

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Five S can be applied in any work environment and prepares a work area for a follow-on Lean process improvement effort. In this case, 5S prepares my garage for Lean process improvement in doing home activities like automobile maintenance, appliance repair, and hobbies like gardening and woodworking. But, remember the preparation benefit is only realized if 5S is sustained. As I said I am the worst (ugly) in keeping the “new world order” in my garage.

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Strategists, architects, process experts, software developers, data managers and other professionals involved in changing the enterprise often put substantial effort in creating all kinds of useful models of their designs. In many cases, such business models, enterprise architecture models, business process models, software models, or data models are only used to specify some design, i.e. to describe what should be built. 
But there is much more value to be had from these models, by using powerful analysis techniques to elicit new insights. In the following pages I will cover 7 of these analyses, discussing the business outcomes you can achieve with their help.
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A list of business analysis techniques is pretty extensive and from year to year new techniques appear, or become more formalised, and are adopted by business analysts all over the world. Some techniques become more popular and are widely used and some are used rare or only when a specific need arises. But definitely there are techniques that became very popular and are used on a daily basis and even become buzz words for some people. These techniques are mainly used to create solution design and they are business process maps, use cases, user stories, wireframes and business rules. Sometimes even business analysts are confused how they should create solution design and what techniques they should use.
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As of this writing, the city of Houston is still struggling with their pothole process. The point of this article is not to recommend a solution, but a path to resolution and a profound lesson learned. Not all problems are resolved by just “throwing money” at it. In fact, the lack of a budget being used is an indication of a process problem.

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The PBD starts with examining the end-product data elements and associated business rules. The BA team then uses this information to redesign a process that produces the end-product. Special note about the team. The lead BA should remind the team members that this is a redesign effort. This is a real challenge especially for the team members who are knowledgeable with the existing process. It may be best to recruit team members with a “fresh pair of eyes.” Note that there is no doubt that the BA team will consider automation in the redesign. In this effort, the BA team should keep in mind a quote attributed to Bill Gates [3] on BPM.

“The first rule of any technology used in a business is that automation applied to an efficient operation will magnify the efficiency. The second is that automation applied to an inefficient operation will magnify the inefficiency. [7]

In my experience, all benefits come from redesigning or improving existing processes, not by applying automation through software. Software only facilitates the process improvement.

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A combination of process modeling (BPMN) and decision modeling  (DMN) simplifies business processes by eliminating and replacing entire sections of the model with a decision model—the decision logic of the process model is precisely captured by decision modeling a separate yet linked model.

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The purpose of this article is to show the expansion of an existing Business Process Model and Notation (BPMN) model due to an increased interest in a partner’s processes.  In a previous article, I developed a BPMN model on a home medical process associated with peritoneal dialysis. In that article, I modeled a process, Ship Dialysis Equipment, as a black box pool;

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Visual models don’t have to be complicated. Unless your organization uses formal UML or BPMN standards, focus on learning to create simple visual models. In this article, we’ll explore 3 simple visual models that a new business analyst should be skilled in creating because they add a lot of value to projects and generally improve your requirements documentation. 

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The purpose of this article is to show an example of using Business Process Model and Notation (BPMN) to document the home medical process of peritoneal dialysis plus using 5S principles in the treatment workspace.

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Business Process Model and Notation (BPMN) is already acknowledged as a de facto standard for business process modeling. However, it still takes a long journey to increase the maturity of business process modeling practice. In practice most business analysts do a lot of mistakes that make their BPMN models over complex, difficult to understand and maintain.

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We are frequently asked about connecting and tracing software architecture elements to business processes by integrating BPMN business models and software models in UML (Unified Modeling Language)... Now we will explore how to supplement business architecture with software architecture. 

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