Microsoft Business Process Alliance Overview
The Microsoft® Business Process Alliance is comprised of a select, exclusive group of ISV partners who are focused on
creating solutions that further enhance Business Process Management (BPM) enablement on the Microsoft platform.
Representing the top BPM solutions in the market, Business Process Alliance members have demonstrated an ability to
simplify complex business processes into a manageable process life cycle and deliver outstanding value to customers.
By building functionality and extending the features of the Microsoft platform, these partner solutions benefit end users by
leveraging a customer’s existing investments in Microsoft products to deliver BPM solutions that span functional areas such
as workflow, business rules, document-centric processes, business activity monitoring, process modeling, and optimization.
Achieving People-Ready Processes
on the Microsoft Platform
Microsoft BizTalk® Server 2006, Microsoft Office SharePoint® Server 2007,
and the 2007 Microsoft Office system empower organizations to rapidly
and efficiently build adaptive, mission-critical Business Process
Management solutions spanning people, systems, and organizations.
Used together, the platform provides end-to-end process enablement,
starting with human- and document-centric tasks in the familiar and easy- Ascentn Corporate Overview
to-use Microsoft Office environment, to complex, high-volume distributed Ascentn pioneered the first .NET based BPMS to empower both IT and
transactions through BizTalk Server. business with a SOA based process deployment platform to deliver rapid,
incremental business agility. Ascentn AgilePoint is a Business Process
People: Increase organizational agility by enabling end users and Management Systems (BPMS) that is a People-Driven and IT enabled
business analysts to develop efficient processes that require high levels of method of creating process based, adaptable business applications by
collaboration, information sharing, and decision making. rapidly assembling reusable SOA business process activities. Ascentn, a
privately held corporation with one-hundred percent Microsoft-compliant
Process: Model adaptive business processes that span people, system, focus, was founded in 2002 by individuals with 20+ years of strong domain
and organizational boundaries. Reduce the cost and complexity of experience in enterprise class workflow management and BPM solutions
managing and automating business processes with a unified solution for on both the .NET and J2EE platforms. Ascentn was named the 2007 Cool
Business Process Management built on service-oriented architectures. Vendor in BPM by Gartner. Ascentn customers span from Global 2000
companies to SMEs such as Siemens, Pfizer, Schlumberger, ChinaTrust,
Performance: Make faster, and Daisy Brand as well as a select group of innovative OEM customers.
enhanced business decisions with
Ascentn has a global presence with offices in North America, APAC, and
process monitoring, business
activity monitoring, business rules EMEA in addition to a Partner Network in 15 countries.
engine, and optimization
capabilities for greater "…. Ascentn’s metadata-driven IT asset-abstraction
organizational performance. framework is a key concept, found in leading-edge
Differentiate your business through
improved process visibility across J2EE-based BPMSs (such as Lombardi, Pegasystems,
employees, partners, and Savvion and Appian). …. Its model driven development
customers. framework provides the necessary instrumentation to
fully experience the value proposition of SOA.”
- Gartner BPM Cool Vendor Report 2007
Much ground has been gained from the evolving efforts to improve
business process management (BPM) technology in the past few years.
But the approach has been limited to automating static processes such
as straight arrow transactions and fixed, easily definable core business
procedures. This approach neglected the real payoff in the 80% of a
firm’s process efforts that involve human intelligence and judgment that
are not so easily defined.
AgilePoint Overview: The need to collaborate and innovate for better customer service,
Ascentn’s AgilePoint is a .NET based BPMS that connects business and IT efficiency, and operational effectiveness is imperative for competitive
at an SOA process layer through familiar Microsoft tools, XML, and Web differentiation. The fundamental flaw is in the approach to BPM that
services. AgilePoint’s model-driven process framework allows dynamic focuses mainly on the developer and the notion of automating code
change to the process in real-time with no compiled code (necessary). This generation. This forces the information worker to abdicate control of the
enables easy composition, adaptation, and control of process based business process to IT which in turn provides a rigid, compiled code
applications that utilize any IT asset. Business can own and adapt the executable, making process adaptability at runtime a major dilemma.
business process as required, and IT does not have to anticipate or be
involved in every business decision. In its 2007 BPM Cool Vendor Report, Ascentn AgilePoint provides a new approach to Business Process
Gartner has stated that Ascentn’s approach is needed “…to fully experience Management that eliminates this IT-Business divide by addressing the
the value proposition of service-oriented architecture”. entire spectrum of business processes from efficient but static business
procedures to dynamic, high value added innovative practices.
Eliminate Business – IT Divide AgilePoint was built completely upon the Microsoft .NET Framework by
• IT abstracts and brings to the surface; assets, transactions, and individuals with 20+ years of strong domain experience in enterprise
SOA as process components in Visual Studio. class workflow management and BPM solutions on both the .NET and
• IT provisions process components, provides governance, J2EE platforms. As a result, AgilePoint employs many J2EE type
manages SLA for components and process model execution. characteristics while leveraging the universal Microsoft productivity tool
• Information Workers assemble process components in Microsoft sets to deliver a technologically balanced, modern BPMS solution.
Visio to create composite Office Business Applications using
InfoPath, SharePoint, Word, and Excel. AgilePoint accelerates organizations to the rich benefits of BPM, SOA
• Consistent and visible model driven process eliminates code and composite applications because it satisfies the technology, cultural,
generation and discrepancies during round trip development. and people aspects of change. Business and IT have a common
• Model Driven XML to XML - Not XML to Compiled Code! business process services layer, with each having culturally appropriate
roles, tools, and control. Change can be fast, yet incremental as IT can
Reduce the Time, Cost and Risk of Mainstream BPM focus on core deliverables for rapid waves of smaller initiatives. Trust is
• The integrated Microsoft stack and interoperability reduces enhanced through the provisioning of a repository of targeted, well
implementation effort, coding, maintenance, and training. tested process services with managed service level agreements and
• Small, incremental solutions provide immediate return on governance for security, monitoring, and compliance. Meaningful
investment and migrate easily to larger BPM processes. collaboration among business and IT increases as the business can
• The no-code, model driven approach allows business to handle control and drive the business process as they see fit, while IT does not
new scenarios and exceptions at runtime which are now tracked have to be accountable or involved in every business decision.
for compliance and audit trails.
• Think Big, Start Small, Scale Fast!
Enable People-Driven Innovation
• IT or business process designers compose and own the process
end to end inside Office using any IT assets on the SOA.
• The BPM framework provides glue and context for all steps in the
process including InfoPath forms, Office documents, SharePoint
portal usage, system activities, human tasks, approvals, business
and conditional rules, and transactions with line of business
• A complete, adaptable stack of integrated BPM technology
encourages streamlined process deployment. No need for
miscellaneous email, phone or paper.
• Model, Adapt, Innovate!
Customer Case Studies/Clients Reference Better Together: AgilePoint and Microsoft Integration
AgilePoint’s unique adaptable architecture and deep integration with The combination of AgilePoint and Microsoft technologies provides a
Microsoft technologies has been leveraged by a wide range of customers collaborative BPM .NET solution specialized for each community of
and partners. OEM’s and ISV’s have used AgilePoint as a core workflow involvement. Process Designers and analysts drive development using
engine platform for diverse vertical solutions from petrochemicals, legal, familiar Microsoft tools: Visio, SharePoint, and Office, while IT provisions
life sciences, and insurance, as well as horizontal solutions in digital asset services and provides governance with their entire array of developer-
and document management, imaging, and capture. Customers have built oriented tools: Visual Studio, BizTalk Server, and SOA Web services. This
innovative business process solutions with AgilePoint that solve the unified business process platform provides the architecture for building
seemingly intractable problems of global scaling with hundreds of process based Office Business Application solutions that can be
departmental process variations by enabling IT to leverage with a incorporated into end-to-end AgilePoint BPM workflows. As the diagram
framework, eliminating application development black holes. below depicts, any IT asset can be process enabled and placed in a SOA
repository within Visio for creating an executable XML process model. This
Financial Services - ChinaTrust mode is directly executed from an event in SharePoint resulting in an
• Chinatrust (15,000+ employees, 58+ countries) InfoPath, Office, or ASP.NET composite business user application.
• J2EE centric Infrastructure: IBM, FileNET, Oracle, etc.
• AgilePoint was selected to align with SOA initiatives
• A host of Microsoft products and technologies were introduced
to deliver combined solutions with AgilePoint
Energy – Velco ( Vermont Electric Power Company)
• AgilePoint selected over J2EE-competitons
• AgilePoint enabled business process management with a small
IT staff and a fraction of cost and time compared to J2EE
Manufacturing – Daisy Brand
• Daisy Brand (75 year, 4th Generation family business)
• Needed to Process Enable existing Microsoft based applications
• Successful project to reduce delayed revenue recognition due to
inconsistent follow-up on invoice deductions
• Process application integrated existing ERP system with
employees in Exchange for 30-60-90-120 day follow-up
• 1st project provided positive ROI on the AgilePoint purchase
Hi-Tech – Elbit AgilePoint extends Microsoft Visio into a powerful, full lifecycle BPM tool
• Business units in different countries needed faster turn-around that enables business analysts to design, improve, and directly deploy
• Looked to enabling more effective connections to the underlying business processes for enterprise-class BPM applications with no coding
systems to allow the leverage of these systems in new process or IT involvement. Process models created by business analysts in
enabled composite applications that align with SOA AgilePoint are directly deployed for execution in XML (rather than
• AgilePoint enabled Elbit to break the reliance on software compiled code). When business requirements change, the XML-based
developers in delivering functionality to their users AgilePoint process can be easily modified and deployed by business
• Developers now encapsulate the required functionality, the analysts without having to go back to IT for application changes.
deployment and delivery is under the control of managers and
analysts who are more closely aligned with the needs of the AgilePoint provides the process designer drag-and-drop integration with
business, and as an end result—a lower cost of ownership SharePoint and Microsoft Office SharePoint Server within Visio-based
process model applications. Processes provide automation capabilities to
"What I really liked was the way Ascentn had leveraged create, read, and manage sites, libraries, documents, lists, and provide
the openness of the .NET architecture. We are really human interaction using InfoPath Forms Server or ASP.NET forms.
SharePoint becomes a process portal station with process initiation, task
pleased with the result. The Accounts Receivable
management, and real-time process monitoring.
project has provided a return on investment for the
Ascentn purchase. Everything moving forward is AgilePoint complements Visual Studio, SOA, BizTalk Server, BizTalk
additional savings for the company." Rules Engine, and Windows Workflow Foundation by taking these
technologies to a new level. Abstracting these developer oriented tools to
- Kevin Brown, CIO, Daisy Brand deliver business agility that can be fully mastered by business analysts
using a code-free, model-driven interface powered by Microsoft Visio.
Additional Microsoft Information and Resources:
Additional resources on enabling business process solutions on the Microsoft platform are available in the resources section below. Through use of
Microsoft BizTalk Server, Office System, Microsoft Office SharePoint Server and .NET, Microsoft offers the premier platform for process enablement,
tying together people, process, and performance.
Microsoft Business Process Management: www.microsoft.com/bpm
Microsoft BizTalk Server: www.microsoft.com/biztalk
Office System: www.microsoft.com/office
Microsoft Office SharePoint Server: www.microsoft.com/sharepoint
Additional Ascentn Information and Resources:
For More Information
“Cool Vendors in Business Process Management, 2007” by Janelle B. Hill and Marc Kerremans
Publication Date: 8 March 2007
Gartner ID Number: G00146378
“The 2006 BPM Suites Report - AgilePoint BPMS” by Derek Miers, Paul Harmon and Curt Hall
Publication Date: March, 2007
http://www.bptrends.com/members/deliver.cfm?report_id=107&target=09-2006 BPMS Ascentn.pdf&return=reports_toc_01.cfm