Workflow tecnologies
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  • 1. Workflow and related tecnologies From project to implementation Corso di formazione gratuito organizzato da Firenze Tecnologia Azienda Speciale della CCIAA presso Incubatore Firenze nell'ambito delfinanziamento Ente Cassa di Risparmio di Firenze 1
  • 2. Workflow and related tecnologies "Corso di formazione gratuito organizzato da Firenze Tecnologia - Azienda Speciale della CCIAA presso Incubatore Firenze nell'ambito del finanziamento Ente Cassa di Risparmio di Firenze" - 2
  • 3. About us ● Studio Associato di consulenti indipendenti attivi nel campo del Knowledge Management e del Workflow ● Tutta la nostra attività è basata su Zope (Free Software Web Application Server) e Plone (Content Management System). ● Supporter tecnologici di e Zope Solution Providers e Large Zope Accounts (Università, Centri di Ricerca, ...) ● Sviluppatori di Zope 3 (workflow group), sviluppatori Plone. Rilasciamo come software libero la maggior parte dei tool e dei prodotti che sviluppiamo (Reflow, OpenSPI, PloneProject, PloneWorkflows, etc.) ● Unici membri Italiani di Zope Europe Association e membri del Plone Business Network. 3
  • 4. BPM Business Process Management ● From “data-aware” information systems to “process-aware” information systems. ● To support business processes an enterprise information system needs to be aware of these processes and their organizational context. ● Business Process Management (BPM) includes methods, techniques, and tools to support the design, enactment, management, and analysis of such operational business processes. ● BPM can be considered as an extension of classical Workflow Management (WFM) systems and approaches. 4
  • 5. BPM Business Process Management ● BPM systems can be used to avoid hard-coding the work processes into tailor-made applications and thus support the shift from programming to assembling applications. ● Moreover, process orientation, redesign, and organic growth are supported. (For example, today’s WFM systems can be used to integrate existing applications and support process change by merely changing the workflow diagram.) 5
  • 6. BPM:  Historical perspective ● From applications built around data to applications built around processes ● Today there were more fundamental problems: a unified way of modeling processes was missing and the systems were too rigid to be used by people in the workplace. ● Most of the technical problems have been resolved by now. However, the more conceptual problems remain. Good standards for business process modeling are still missing and even today’s WFM systems enforce unnecessary constrains on the process logic (e.g., processes are made more sequential). 6
  • 7. BPM life­cycle Process design ● Any BPM effort requires the modeling of an existing (“as-is”) or desired (“to-be”) process, i.e., a process design. During this phase process models including various perspectives (control-flow, data- flow, organizational, sociotechnical, and operational aspects) are constructed. The only way to create a “process-aware” enterprise information system is to add knowledge about the operational processes at hand. System configuration ● Based on a process design, the process-aware enterprise information system is realized. In the traditional setting the realization would require a time-consuming and complex software development process. The traditional software development process is replaced by a configuration or assembly process. Therefore, we use the term system configuration for the phase in- between process design and enactment. 7
  • 8. BPM life­cycle Process enactment ● The process enactment phase is the phase where the process- aware enterprise information system realized in the system configuration phase is actually used. Diagnosis ● Process-aware enterprise information system have to change over time to improve performance, exploit new technologies, support new processes, and adapt to an ever changing environment. Therefore, the diagnosis phase is linking the process enactment phase to the a new design phase. 8
  • 9. BPM Benefits Company ● cost and performance measurement ● quality control ● confidentiality and access control ● adherence to procedures Client ● response time ● information on case status ● service quality ● agent accesibility 9
  • 10. BPM Benefits Agent ● clear picture of the tasks ● information 'at agent' fingertips ● automatic access tools ● information on context of tasks Manager ● just in time display of tasks ● just enough informations ● warning system ● measurement and tracking of quality 10
  • 11. BPR Business Process  Reengineering What is reengineering? “Reengineering is the fundamental rethinking and radical redesign of business processes to achieve dramatic improvements in critical, contemporary measures of performance such as cost, quality, service and speed.” Hammer,M., Champy.J., (1993), Reengineering the Corporation: A Manifesto for Business Revolution., Harper Collins, London. 11
  • 12. BPR Business Process  Reengineering ● Prepare for reengineering ● Map and Analyze As-Is process ● Design To-be process ● Implement reengineered process ● Improve continuously 12
  • 13. BPR Business Process  Reengineering ● Prepare for reengineering ● Is BRP necessary? There should be a significant need for the process to be reengineered. ● Consensus on the importance of reengineering (Build Cross functional team) ● Planning for organizational changes (Develop Strategic Purpose) ● Understand the expectations of the involved persons (Identify Customer driven objective) 13
  • 14. BPR Business Process  Reengineering ● Map and Analyze As-Is process ● Create Process and Activity Models ● Evaluate time and resource cost of each activity ● Identify disconnects (anything that prevent the process to achieving the desired results) ● Identify value adding processes 14
  • 15. BPR Business Process  Reengineering Design To-be process: produce alternatives to current situation ● Benchmark processes ● Design To-Be processes ● Validate To-Be processes ● Perform Trade-off Analysis (to choose the better implementation) 15
  • 16. BPR Business Process  Reengineering Implement reengineered process: ● Remove all oppositions ● Prepare a transition plans ● Initiate training programs ● Implement transition plan 16
  • 17. BPR Business Process  Reengineering Improve continuously ● Initiate On-going measurement ● Review performance against target ● Improve process continuously 17
  • 18. Workflow Paradigms Workflow Definition: ● The automation of a business process, in whole or part, during which documents, information or tasks are passed from one participant to another for action, according to a set of procedural rules. (WFMC Definition) 18
  • 19. Workflow Paradigms Workflow entity based Workflow activity based 19
  • 20. Workflow Entity Based ● A workflow in which the process is centered around a document, that represents the task to be completed. ● The task are assigned by role. 20
  • 21. Workflow Entity Based Example 21
  • 22. Workflow Activity Based ● A workflow in which the process is constituted from a set of activities (tasks), these can involve a document exchange or informations, and can be executed in parallel. ● An activity is assigned to a specific user. 22
  • 23. Workflow Activity Based Example 23
  • 24. Workflow Activity Based categories ● Pure WFM systems ● WFM components embedded in other systems ● Custom­made WFM solutions ● Hard­coded WFM solutions 24
  • 25. Workflow Activity Based categories Pure WFM systems ● At this point in time many WFM systems are available and used in practise.  Examples of commercial systems include Staffware Process Suite, FileNET BPM  Suite, i­Flow, FLOWer, WebSphere MQ Workflow,TIBCO InConcert, and open  source systems are Henhydra, OpenWFE, YAWL. 25
  • 26. Workflow Activity Based categories WFM components embedded in other systems ● Many software packages embed a generic workflow component whose functionality  is comparable to the pure WFM systems. For example, most ERP systems  provide  a workflow component. SAP WebFlow is the workflow component of SAP  offering  all the functionality typically present in traditional stand­alone WFM products. 26
  • 27. Workflow Activity Based categories Custom­made WFM solutions ● Many organizations, e.g., banks and insurance companies, have chosen not to use a  commercially available WFM solution but build an organization­specific solution.  These solutions typically only support a subset of the functionality offered by the  first two categories. Nevertheless, these systems support the definition and  execution of different workflows. 27
  • 28. Workflow Activity Based categories Hard­coded WFM solutions ● The last category refers to the situation were the processes are hard­coded in the  applications, i.e., there is no generic workflow support but applications are coupled  in such a way that a specific process is supported. The only way to change a process  is to change the applications themselves, i.e., unlike the first three categories there  is no component that is process­aware. Note that in these hard­coded system an  explicit orchestration layer is missing. 28
  • 29. Workflow Activity Based model 29
  • 30. Petri net Definition: A Petri net is a triple (P, T , F ): ● P is a finite set of places, ● T is a finite set of transitions (P ∩ T = ∅), ● F ⊆ (P × T ) ∪ (T × P ) is a set of arcs (flow relation) (1) A transition t is said to be enabled if each input place p of t contains at least one token. (2) An enabled transition may fire. If transition t fires, then t consumes one token from each input place p of t and produces one token for each output place p of t. 30
  • 31. Petri net: WF­net Definition: A Petri net PN = (P, T , F ) is a WF-net (Workflow net) if and only if: (i) There is one source place i ∈ P such that •i = Ø. (ii) There is one sink place o ∈ P such that o• = ∅Ø. (iii) Every node x ∈ P ∪ T is on a path from i to o. 31
  • 32. Petri net: WF­net Tasks are modeled by transitions and causal dependencies are modeled by places and arcs. In fact: A place corresponds to a condition which can be used as pre- and/or post-condition for tasks. An AND-split corresponds to a transition with two or more output places, An AND-join corresponds to a transition with two or more input places. OR-splits/OR-joins correspond to places with multiple outgoing/ingoing arcs. 32
  • 33. Petri net Fork Join XOR 33
  • 34. Petri net Fork Join AND 34
  • 35. Petri net: WF­net 35
  • 36. Petri net:  WF­net with Syntactical Sugar 36
  • 37. Petri net: Syntactical Sugar 37
  • 38. BPMN ● A notation that is readily understandable, from the business analysts to the technical developers ● A standard graphical notation that ensure a common language ● To show the flow of data between activities ● Applicable only to business processes (not organizational structures, resources, data models and strategy) 38
  • 39. BPMN: Core 39
  • 40. BPMN: Events 40
  • 41. BPMN: Activities 41
  • 42. BPMN: Connections 42
  • 43. BPMN: Gateways 43
  • 44. BPMN: Swimlane 44
  • 45. BPMN: Artifacts 45
  • 46. BPMN Fork­Join AND 46
  • 47. BPMN Fork­Join OR 47
  • 48. BPMN exception handling 48
  • 49. BPMN example 49
  • 50. WfMC: define WfMS ● To define "standards" ● A model for workflow management systems ● Interoperability between heterogeonus engines 50
  • 51. WfMC: the WfMS model 51
  • 52. WfMC Components & Interfaces 52
  • 53. WfMC: Meta­Model 53
  • 54. WfMC: Process 54
  • 55. WfMC: Activity 55
  • 56. WfMC: Example (with UML notation) 56
  • 57. Workflow Patterns ● Identify flow of execution control: ● sequence ● choice ● parallelism ● synchronization ● .... ● Patterns as way to compare workflow engines 57
  • 58. Workflow Patterns: problems ● Different language semantics ● multiple instances of an activity ● loops with one entry and one exit point ● explicit termination of activity and process or not? 58
  • 59. Workflow Patterns ● Basic control flow ● Branching and synchronization ● Structural ● Multiple Instances ● State-Based ● Cancellation 59
  • 60. References ● Business Process Management Demystified: A Tutorial on Models, Systems and Standards for Workflow Management - W.M.P. van der Aalst ● Workflow Management in the Internet Age - C. MOHAN ● BUSINESS PROCESS REENGINEERING: A CONSOLIDATED METHODOLOGY - Subramanian Muthu, Larry Whitman, and S. Hossein Cheraghi ● BPMN Fundamentals (slide) - Prepared by Stephen A. White, IBM ● Business Process Modeling Notation (BPMN) ● YAWL: Yet Another Workflow Language - W.M.P. van der Aalst, and A.H.M. ter Hofstede ● Workflow Management Coalition The Workflow Reference Model - David Hollingsworth ● Workflow Patterns - W.P.M van der Aalst, A.H.M ter Hofstede, B. Kiepuszewski, and A.P.Barrose 60
  • 61. References ● Yet Another Workflow Language: ● Workflow Patterns: ● Flash animations of workflow patterns: ● Workflow management coalition: ● Business process management initiative: 61
  • 62. Grazie Riccardo Lemmi riccardo@reflab .it - - 62