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    • Enhancing E-service Collaboration with Enforcement and Relationship Management: a Methodology from Requirements to Event Driven Realization Dickson K.W. CHIU Senior Member, IEEE kwchiu@acm.org, dicksonchiu@ieee.org Shing-Chi CHEUNG, Sven TILL Dept. of Computer Science Hong Kong University of Science & Technology {scc, till}@cs.ust.hk
    • Introduction
      • e-service - service provided over the Internet
      • adoption of e-services for B2B process collaboration
      • need for a more in depth study
        • not just “regular” process enactment – basic knowledge
        • requirement engineering beyond basic enactment is almost unexplored
      • Enforcement
        • E xception detection – how do you know what is happening inside your partners’ organization?
        • Exception handling – how deviations can be controlled or compensated
      • Business relationship management
        • quality collaboration
        • need to do extra things
        • process “transparency”
    • Project Background
      • My PhD thesis research on exceptions in WFMS
        • D.K.W. Chiu, Q. Li and K. Karlapalem. A Meta Modeling Approach for Workflow Management System Supporting Exception Handling. Information Systems , 24(2):159-184, 1999.
        • D.K.W. Chiu, Q. Li and K. Karlapalem. Web Interface-Driven Cooperative Exception Handling in ADOME Workflow Management System. Information Systems , 26(2):93-120, 2001.
      • Extension to cross-organization workflows
        • D.K.W. Chiu, K. Karlapalem, Q. Li and E. Kafeza. Workflow Views Based E-Contracts in a Cross-Organization E-Service Environment. Distributed and Parallel Databases , 12(2-3):193-216, 2002.
      • CRM
        • D.K.W. Chiu, et al. An Event Driven Approach to Customer Relationship Management in an e-Brokerage Environment. HICSS36, IEEE Computer Society Press, Jan 2003.
      • Conference Paper
        • D.K.W. Chiu, S.C. Cheung, and S. Till. An Architecture for E-Contract Enforcement in an E-service Environment. HICSS36 best paper nomination.
    • Objectives
      • a methodology to structure B2B process collaboration in multiple layers and multiple perspectives
        • Conceptual models expressed in UML
        • life cycle similar to that of a software system, i.e., definition, analysis, and realization
      • a more thorough understanding of B2B process collaboration from its fundamentals to system design
      • a methodology is presented for the engineering of e-service process collaboration from high-level business requirements down to system design details
      • a system architecture and feasible implementation outline with Enterprise Java Bean (EJB) and Web services
      • evaluate our approach from the perspective of three main stakeholders of e-collaboration, namely users, management, and systems developers
    • Simplified Business Contract Lifecycle
      • Based on business experience and requirements, contract templates (with variables) are abstracted from previous contracts
      • A contract template is modeled as an e-Contract template
      • Each successful e-Negotiation will lead to an e-Contract
      • Enforcement and enactment are executed differently and in parallel
      • CRM should be anywhere anytime …
      Business Information Exchange Contract Enactment Contract Enforcement Contract Negotiation
    • Motivating Business Process Example
      • Can this show anything beyond regular process execution -
      • enforcement and relationship management?
      Sub-process
    • Example Enforcement Requirements
      • End user notify system integrator: changes in delivery requirements or payment arrangement -
      • System integrator notify end user - changes in delivery date
      • When a vendor changes the lead-time but the delivery schedule can still be met within the end user’s deadline, the change can be tolerated.
      • The system integrator should present a revised delivery schedule to the end user according to the parts vendor’s reported lead-time.
      • When a certain part is stopped from production, the system integrator request the end user’s approval of using an alternative part.
      • When there is a significant aggregated price change in parts during the end user’s evaluation, a revised quotation (price) is sent to the end user through an event-triggering mechanism.
      • Most of the above are related to exception handling…
    • Enforcement Requirements in General
      • Recognition (monitoring) and handling of contract breaches
      • Enforcement and enactment are handled differently (enactment deals with regular activities)
      • Compliance of a contract has to be kept under constant surveillance
      • Monitoring of variables – states of the business process
      • Challenges
        • constantly checking validity of all these variables incurs tremendous overheads
        • extended across organizational boundaries
        • may include confidential information, e.g., bank accounts
    • Example Relationship Management Requirements
      • Any involved organization wants to be able to inquire the progress of business processes at other business partners’ side such as order processing, payment.
      • A service provider wants to relay relevant information to business partners from other sources or upon enquiry, such as technical information, drivers update, product news.
      • Effective measures for handling complaints and feedbacks from business partners are essential to help rescue threatened relationship and reduce attrition.
    • A Three-Layered Architecture for B2B Collaboration Enterprise JavaBeans Web Services ECA Rules Workflow Processes Enforcement Policies Enforcement Requirements Enactment Requirements Collaboration Requirements Business Rules System Design Relationship Policies Relationship Management Requirements
    • Artifacts of B2B Collaboration Architecture Analysts & Programmers Analysts Users, managers, Analysts Perspective
      • Task system design (Enterprise JavaBeans components)
      • Process system design (BPEL or workflow engine)
      • Cross-organizational interface (Web Services XML schemas)
      System design
      • Meta-model for process enactment and exception handling: Business events, Business rules, Business actions and Business entities
      Business rules
      • Meta-model for B2B Collaboration:
      • Enactment requirements (Workflow Processes)
      • Enforcement requirements (Enforcement Polices)
      • Relationship management requirements (Relationship Management Polices)
      • Parties and Roles
      Collaboration requirements Artifacts Layer
    • A Meta-model of B2B Process Collaboration 1 specifies * * * +publisher 1 * 1..* * performs 1..* 1 Enforcement Requirement * * specifies Enforcement Policy Collaboration Requirement Enactment Requirement Workflow Process specifies 1 Business Rule * 1 Event Action Condition Business Party * Business Event Exception Temporal Event +subscriber * Obligation Permission Prohibition aggregation inheritance realizes realizes Relationship Mgmt Requirement Relationship Mgmt Policy * realizes 1..*
    • System Architecture based on ECA rules
      • Motivated by the active database paradigm
      • Event - occurrence of something interesting to the system itself or to user applications
      • Event driven execution of rules in event-condition-action (ECA) form
      • ECA (active) rules: On event if condition then action
      • Exceptions and alerts are events too ( action = handler)
      • Ensure efficiency and timeliness - monitor becomes only active when an interesting event occurs
      Requirement Enforcer Collaboration Process Enactor Event Adapter Web Service Interface Event Event A Party as an e-Service Provider Database ECA rules Event Repository Event Subscribers List Business Entities Event Event Event Other Collaboration Parties Timer Event Internet
    • Enactment Requirements to ECA rules
      • Event-driven workflow execution model (that is, ECA rule based)
      • Business partners have to trigger the corresponding start-events (say, quotation enquiry) to start B2B process collaboration.
      • If the process is a composite one, the collaboration process enactor will raise a start-event for the first sub-process
      • This will continue recursively downward the composition hierarchy until a leaf sub-process or task.
      • The collaboration process enactor sends a start-event to the task to initiate it.
      • After the task is finished successfully, the task replies to the collaboration process enactor by raising a finish-event with the results (if any).
      • The collaboration process enactor then carries on with the next step according to the returned result.
      • Upon failures or timeouts, an appropriate exception event will also be raised accordingly.
    • Enactment ECA rules example
      • E: received (QUOTATION_ENQUIRY), C: true, A: perform (CHECK_PART_INFO)
      • E: finish (CHECK_PART_INFO), C: true, A: perform (PREPARE_QUOTATION)
      • E: finish (PREPARE_QUOTATION), C: true, A: perform (PREPARE_EXTRA_INFO)
    • Enforcement Requirements to ECA rules
      • Improvement from deontic logic – well-defined execution semantics and when to execute
      • BAO stands for an object that encapsulates a business action whose execution triggers the object creation
      • Case study – “ Terms and Conditions of Sale, Service and Technical Support”, Dell, Hong Kong http:// www.ap.dell.com/ap/hk/en/gen/local/legal_terms.htm
      NOT permitted( BAO ) Permission (may …) prohibitionCondition( BAO ) onOccurred( BAO) Prohibition ( Shall not … ) raise( exception( BAO ) ) NOT occurred( BAO ) onDay(deadline (BAO ) ) Obligation (Shall …) Action Condition Event Clause type
    • Enforcing Obligation
      • Upon reaching the deadline T obl , a temporal event is generated by the Timer
      • Contract enforcer (of counter party of the action) check if the obliged party has performed the required business action A obl , searching the log file for invoked actions / occurrence of related events
      • If the obligation has not been fulfilled, the contract enforcer raises an exception
      E: onDay( deadline( BAO ) ) C: NOT occurred( BAO ) A: raise( exception( BAO ) )
    • Enforcing Obligation Example
      • 7.1 Dell shall deliver the Products to the place of delivery designated by Customer and agreed to by Dell as evidenced in Customer’s invoice (“Place of Delivery”)
      • 10.7 …Dell shall respond to a request for such Emergency Service as soon as practicable after its receipt of such request.
      • Analyst has to clarify and substitute ambiguities with concrete deadline in the formulation
      E: onDay( after( receiptDate( EMERGENCY_REQUEST ), N ) ) ) C: NOT responded( EMERGENCY_REQUEST ) ) A: raise( exception( EMERGENCY_REQUEST ) E: onDay( before( deadline( DELIVER ), 6 ) ) C: valid( place( DELIVER ) ) & ready( DELIVER ) A: perform( DELIVER ) E: onDay( deadline( DELIVER ) ) C: NOT occurred( DELIVER ) A: raise( exception( DELIVER ) ) Enactment rule (DELL) Enforcement rule (Customer)
    • Enforcing Prohibition
      • The contract enforcer should treat an occurrence of a prohibited action as an exception.
      • Problem - observation of prohibitions
        • if a party performs a prohibited action, the party will probably try to hide or distract this fact as long as possible
        • unless the party does this by mistake or misunderstandings)
        • autonomous nature of different organizations
      • Example - 14. Each party shall treat as confidential all information obtained from the other pursuant to a Contract which is marked 'confidential’ …
      E: onOccurred( INFO ) C: confidential( INFO ) A: raise( exception( INFO ) ) E: onOccurred( BAO ) C: NOT permitted( BOA ) A: raise( exception( BAO ) ) Enforcement rule (Both Parties) Enforcement rule form
    • Enforcing Permission
      • Temporary allowance to perform an otherwise prohibited action
        • within a certain allowed time period
        • under certain situations (i.e., events plus conditions)
        • otherwise exception
      • Example - 2.1 … Dell shall be entitled to refuse to accept orders placed by the Customer if the Customer breaches or Dell, on reasonable grounds, suspects that the Customer will breach this warranty …
      E: onOccurred( REFUSE_ORDER ) C: NOT badlisted( customer( REFUSE_ORDER ) ) A: raise( exception( REFUSE_ORDER ) ) E: onOccurred( BAO ) C: prohibitionCondition( BAO ) A: raise( exception( BAO ) ) Enforcement rule example (Both Parties) Enforcement rule form
    • Enforcing Permission - Problem
      • Example - 3.1 … If Dell allows a Customer to cancel its order after manufacture but before shipment of the Product, Dell shall be entitled to levy a cancellation charge equal to 20% of the price of the Products. …
      • Customer can hardly know the commencement of manufacture of the product - almost non-monitorable
      • Dell may improve the situation by informing the customer when the commencement starts through its enactment system. (CRM!)
      E: onOccurred( LEVY ) C: NOT ( dateOfCancellation( order( LEVY ) ) > dateOfManufacture ( order( LEVY ) ) & cancellationApproved( order( LEVY ) ) ) A: raise( exception( LEVY ) ) E: onOccurred( BAO ) C: prohibitionCondition( BAO ) A: raise( exception( BAO ) ) Enforcement rule example (Both Parties) Enforcement rule form
    • Relationship Management Requirements
      • CRM help an organization to streamline customer services and maximize the value of customers
      • New in the B2B context – objectives:
        • provision of quality service
        • monitoring of collaborating processes
        • better dissemination of information
        • effective handling of complaints
      • Automation for CRM is even more essential for B2B
      • Approach
        • Concentrated on business rule designs for asynchronous event driven
        • particularly for exceptions
        • Transform business rules from if-then form to ECA form
        • Isolate the relevant events
        • record the objectives of each rule to determine its usefulness and hence its priority of implementation in a phased approach
    • Quality of service
      • Often not explicitly enforced in a contract
      • But this should not just be optional
      • Do better than required or specified => competitive
      • Example, though some obliged actions may have a distant deadline, the management may decide to perform it as soon as feasible.
      • Example ECA-rule for quicker delivery
        • E: received (ORDER)
        • C: valid( place( DELIVER ) ) & ready( DELIVER )
        • A: perform( DELIVER )
    • Monitoring of collaborating processes
      • Helps business partners to plan ahead and reduce uncertainties
      • Example: a customer can hardly tell whether the manufacture process of the product has already commenced when the order is cancelled
        • Improve the situation by informing the customer when the manufacturing process has commenced
        • Better than handling enquiries passively => reduce the need for human enquiries and thus operating costs.
      • Non-monitorable => monitorable
      • ECA rule example:
        • E: start (DELIVERY)
        • C: true
        • A: notify (customer (DELIVER))
    • Dissemination of useful information
      • Widely in practice for B2C relationship management.
      • Financial institutions often provide market information to their customers as extra services.
      • Facilitate the customer to make decision and in turn may help effective collaboration.
      • For example, system integrator forward vendor’s technical information or software updates to the relevant customers.
        • Prevent problems from occurring
        • improves the service quality
        • reduce the cost of support
      • Example ECA rule:
        • E: received (INFO)
        • C: relevant (INFO, customer)
        • A: notify (customer ( INFO) )
    • Effective handling of complaints
      • Avoids customer attrition
      • Help rescue threatened relationship
      • Complaints involve exception conditions
        • need to be handled by appropriate trained personnel or even the management manually
        • should be performed as soon as possible to reduce customer grievance
      • Example ECA rule:
        • E: received (COMPLAINT)
        • C: true
        • A: notify (handling_personnel (customer ( COMLAINT)))
    • Discussion of Problems
      • General measures to handle contract breaches or exception involves
        • domain specific knowledge
        • explicitly specified in other contract clauses
        • implicitly regulated by laws and standards
      • Ambiguity and impreciseness of natural languages
        • reference to other laws, regulations, standard trade practices
        • parties involved should discuss and clarify the matter
        • amend existing or forthcoming contracts accordingly
      • Autonomous nature of individual organizations
        • Required events might not be monitorable
        • Cooperation and trust - improves the transparency of operations (CRM!)
        • Add explicit clauses in the contract to demand these events
      • Lack of e-services standards
    • Web Service Implementation Outline
      • Event Adaptor – event publish-and-subscribe paradigm
      Web Services Manager Event Adapter publish subscribe receive notify Database Event Repository Subscribers List Security Policies Web Services Manager receive event event event event Counter Party Party request subscribe request request interface depend event subscription request component NOTATIONS
    • Web Services of the Event Adaptor
      • Publish Web service
        • invoked by the event adaptor
        • input parameter is the occurred event or exception
        • checks the subscribers list and the security policies, and then notifies the valid subscribers (via e-mail, fax, ICQ message, or even via another Web service)
      • Subscribe Web service
        • registers requests for an event subscription
        • parameters: the requester, the subscribed event, and how the requester wants to receive the event notification
      • Receive Web service
        • receive subscribed events published by the counter party
        • received events are recorded at the Event Repository and forwarded to the Event Adapter
        • in turn transforms them into the forms as required by the Contract Enforcer and the Contract Enacter
    • Example Web Services for Collaboration
      • takeOrder Web Service
      • Input: OrderRequest
      • Buyer
        • Name
        • Address
        • E-Mail
      • ProductList
        • Product
          • Product ID
          • Product Name
          • Quantity
          • Price
      • Output: OrderResponse
      • OrderResult
        • OrderNr
        • Password
      • Estimated Delivery Date
      • trackOrder Web Service
      • Input: OrderStatusRequest
      • OrderNr
      • Password
      • Output: OrderStatus
      • Progress
      • Estimated Delivery Date
      • Optional: DeliveryNr
    • Web Services for External Exception / Event Reception
      • Example Web Service
      • Name: ChangeOrderRequest
      • Input:
      • ChangeContractDataRequest
        • ChangeRequestID
        • Customer Id
        • OrderNumber
        • ToChangeContractData
        • OldValue
        • NewValue
      • ReasonOfChange
      • Output:
      • ChangeContractDataResponse
        • ChangeRequestID
        • Approved (Yes/No)
        • AuthorizedBy
        • AdditionalComment
        • ToChangeContractData
      • NewValue
      • “ Catch-all-exception” Web service
        • Precaution – unhandled exceptions forward to administrators
      • Each events / exceptions sub-class hierarchy as Web service
        • Extra parameters / data
      • E.g., End User -> System Integrator
        • Cancel Order Request
        • Change Order Request
          • Change Delivery Date Request
          • Change Delivery Location Request
        • Delay Payment Request
        • Return Unsatisfied System Request
      • E.g., Part Vendor -> System Integrator
        • Price List Update
        • Price Update
          • New Parts Update
          • Part Recall Notification
        • Part Obsolescence Notification
        • Driver Update
    • Event Chaining
      • Possible because of automated receipt and sending of events
      • Efficient and effective knowledge dissemination
      • E.g., driver update:
        • part vendor -> system integrator -> end user
    • Process Monitoring
      • Name: GetProcessStatus
      • Input: ProcessStatusRequest
        • CustomerId
        • OrderNumber
      • Output: ProcessStatusResponse
        • CustomerID
        • OrderNumber
        • StatusReport (content depend on the customer, status, etc.)
        • ContactPersonInfo (for further information)
    • Evaluation - Concerns of different stakeholders Difficulties in programming captured knowledge Event monitorability Difficulties in programming captured knowledge Phase approach that accommodate existing basic enactment information systems Development / Maintenance effort & cost Requirement elicitation Reusability Scalability Uncertainty in the use of new technologies Overall system complexity Integration with existing systems System Developer Improve customer relationships Improved services Knowledge management Business process monitorability Compliance to contracts / trade standard / regulations / laws Exception and crisis management Knowledge management Increase business opportunities Convergence of disparate business functionalities Cost vs. Benefit Improve productivity Scalability Security Reduction in total development cost Communications cost Management Improved service call-center or web page More transparent business processes Reduce tedious manual checking Timeliness of services Workflow automation Reliability – retries, search alternatives Assist their work Interoperability and connectivity System / information availability Convenience and ease of use User RM Enforcement Enactment General Concerns
    • Conclusions
      • A pragmatic three-layer architecture for B2B e-service process collaboration (collaboration requirement layer, business rule layer, and system design layer)
      • Support for enactment, enforcement, and relationship management
      • A meta-model for B2B collaboration based on a unified artifact of event-condition-action
      • A methodology for eliciting knowledge of collaboration requirements into business rules in ECA format
      • Typical problems that can be discovered by our methodology, together with some measures of overcoming them
      • A system architecture and feasible implementation outline with Enterprise Java Bean (EJB) and Web services
      • Evaluation of our approach from the perspective of three main stakeholders of e-collaboration, namely users, management, and systems developers
    • Continuing and Future Work
      • Methodologies for preventive measures avoiding contract breaches.
      • Process adaptation for interoperability with process views and event flows analysis – different partners have different interactions.
      • Alerts – urgency in process integration (esp. healthcare)
      • Application of this framework in other domains, particularly B2B process enforcement (exceptions) and *CRM*
        • Financial institutions, insurance, …
        • e-tourism, e-government, e-learning, …