Notes from - OCEB 2 Certification Guide: Business Process Management - Fundamental Level

Chapter 1 - Getting Started

  1. BPM refers to both business process modeling and business process management
  2. Seven Major examination topics fall into three categories
  • The business itself
  • Business process modeling using BPMN
  • Frameworks for process quality, business governance, and metrics
  1. Five OCEB certificates are:
  • OCEB Fundamental
  • OCEB Business Intermediate
  • OCEB Business Advanced
  • OCEB Technical Intermediate
  • OCEB Technical Advanced
  1. Goal - These and other BPM standards provide support to discover, incorporate, optimize, and implement business processes
  • The goal of OCEB2 is to provide a mesure for this knowledge
  1. Two branches of the certification:
  • Technical - are intended for IT employees who implement business processes in systems, that is, architects, designers, and developers (topics include detailed modeling aspects, information security, and architectures such as SOA)
  • Business - address analysts, architects, and also employees of specialist departments (Topics include change management, process improvement, or the management of business processes
  1. The OCEB2 Fundamental is broken down as follows:
  • Business goals, objectives (8%)
  • Business process concpets and fundamentals (11%)
  • Business process management concepts and fundamentals (10%)
  • Business motivation modeling (16%)
  • Business process modeling concepts (24%)
  • Business process modleing skills (16%)
  • Process quality, governance, and metrics frameworks (15%)
  1. SpeedyCar - has set the goal to minimize employment of staff with innovative IT systems and thus, be able to offer unbeatable prices in the market. Service is supposed to be considerably better and more apparant to customers, compared to competitors.

Chapter 2 - Basic Principles of Business Management

  1. Appropriate communication with people from business departments is an essential success factor for BPM experts
  2. Manager: The man who knows exactly what he cannot do, and finds the right persons to do it for him. - Philip Rosenthal
  3. Keywords:
  • Management compentencies
  • Business strategy
  • Porter's five forces
  • STEP analysis
  • Market segmentation
  • SWOT analysis
  • Value chain
  • Break-even analysis
  • Crossover analysis
  • Network plan
  1. Business functions are not departments because a departement can execute multiple functions; In modern and rather process-oriented enterprises, however, a function is frequently mapped onto multiple organization units

  2. Core vs Support functions - depending on whether a business function directly serves the object of the enterprise or not, you can distinguish core functions or support functions

  3. Manager - a person who organizes, plans, supports, defines, and assesses the work of others

  4. Business administration - understood as controllling and organizing business activities

  5. Seven Manager Competencies:

  • Goal setting
  • Planning
  • Decision-making
  • Delegation
  • Support
  • Communication
  • Controlling
  1. Strategy - is the means to an end
  2. Business Strategy Steps
  • First, it analyzes the market environment
  • Second, it divides the market into segments theoretically
  • third, it analyses its strengths and weaknesses for each market segment separately
  • fourth, this forms the basis for setting objectives and planning the measures to be taken
  1. After strategy has been developed, you should plan the personnel deployment by analyzing:
  • Strategic vision of the enterprise
  • Short-term and long-term goals
  • Changes in the market that impact the enterprise
  • Requirements with regard to personnel based on the strategic vision
  • Possible opposition in the organization
  1. Porters Five Forces - framework that supports an enterprise in selecting a suitable strategy to gain a competitive advantage:
  • Potential competitors - threats of new competitors / barriers to entry
  • Suppliers - bargaining power
  • Substitute products - threats of substitute products and services
  • Consumers / buyers - bargaining power
    all point at Rivalry among competitors
  1. STEP = PEST - an acronym for environmental factors to be considered:
  • Sociological/demographic factors
    • values, lifestyle, demographic influencers, income distribution, education, population growth, safety
  • Technological factors
    • r+d, new products and processes, product lifecycles, public research expenditure
  • Economic factors
    • economic growth, inflations, interest rates, exchange rates, taxation, unemployment, business cycles, availability of resources
  • Political factors
    • competition with authorities, legislation, political stability, governance principles, trade barriers, safety directives, subsidies
      14, Market segmentation, niches
  1. SWOT analysis
  2. Why is marketing important for an expert in business process analysis? one of the most important business process types is the value chain.
  3. Marketing - is the market-oriented realization of enterprise goals and the alignment of the entire enterprise in the market
  4. Marketing - is a process in the economic and social structure which individuals and groups use to meet their requirements and request by generating, offering, and exchanging proudcts and other things of value
  5. Two types of marketing (proactive and reactive)
  6. Main process elements of marketing:
  • market segmentation
  • strategy development
  • market research
  • pricing
  • placement
  • value chain
  1. Value chain - every enterprise is a collection of activities that are performed to design, produce, market, deliver, and support its product. All these activities can be represented in a value chain:
  • primary activities
    • inbound logistics
    • operations
    • outbound logistics
    • marketing and sales
    • services
  • supporting activities
    • firm infrastructure
    • human resources management
    • technology
  1. Project - is an undertaking with limited timeframes and budget to deliver several clearly defined results and is basically characterized by the uniqueness of conditions in their entirety (limited and unique)
  2. Project management - application of knowledge, skills, tools, and techniques on a set of activities to meet a specified objective:
  • Initiation (charter, scope)
  • Planning (plan, estimate effort duration and costs, plan resources, analyze risks)
  • Executing (form a team, manage project execution, perform qa, inform)
  • Controlling ( monitor risks, report progress, initiate measures)
  • Closing (secure experiences, close contracts)
  1. Fixed costs - are costs that are constant within a specific period of time and are independent of the production volume or quantity of sales
  2. Variable costs - are costs that vary if the production volume or quantity of sales changes
  3. Overhead costs - are costs that can be allocated only indirectly to a cost unit (prouduct, service)
  4. Working capital = current assets - current liabilities (1 year)
  5. Return on Investment (ROI) = Earning / Capital employed
  6. Break even analysis - period of time or quantity where sales revenues exceed production costs (when profit starts)
  • break-even point = Fixed costs / Sales price - Variable costs per unit
  1. Where the break-even analysis enables the assessment of different scenarios with regard to sales revenues and expenses, the crossover analysis uses the same principle to compare different scenarios with regard to fixed and variable costs.
  • low fixed costs, high variable costs, versus
  • high fixed costs, low variable costs
  1. Decision tree - each fork is connected with probabilities of occurence
  2. Scheduling and resouce planning - enables you to estimate whether projects can be completed within the timeframe required and whether the required resources are actually available
  3. Network plan - split a project into tasks, put tasks into sequence, earliest start time, minimum run time, earliest and latest stop time. - helps establish critical path

Chapter 3 - Basic Principles of Business Processes

  1. A very important, but not inherent, characteristic of a business process is the ability to be changed easily
  2. The elementary steps of a process - also have characteristics such as executing roles, necessary resources, data that is required, duration, business rules that must be taken into account, and a brief description of the activity
  3. The goal of process descovery is to detect the implicit knowledge about as-is processes and make it explicit
  4. Three levels of business process modeling:
  • descriptive modeling
  • analytical modeling
  • executable modeling
  1. Keywords:
  • Business process
  • Business process identification
  • business process properties
  • as-is process
  • to-be process
  1. Imagination is more important than knowledge - Albert Einstein
  2. Business process characteristics:
  • involve several actions, steps, and activities
  • usually involve various organizationl units (departments, enterprises, etc.)
  • are targeted
  • basically describe an action, decision, and cooperation
  • the result represents a value for an (internal or external) customer
    Other critical characteristics of business processes:
  • they describe how the enterprise ((or other organizational unit operates)
  • actions can be assigned to organizational units or roles
  • the more brances a business processes has, the more complex it is
  1. Multiple definitions of business process:
  • Geary A. Rummler and Alan P. Brache - a series of steps designed to produce a product or service. If the result is directly of benefit to the customer, it is a primary process; otherwise, it is a supporting process
  • Martyn Ould - a coherent set of activities carried out by a collaborating group to achieve a goal
  • Howard Smith and Peter Fingar - complex, distributed, and long-running
  • Workflow Management Coalition (WfMC) - a set of one ore more linked procedures or activities which collectively realize a business objective or policy goal, normally within the context of an organizational structure defining functional roles and relationships
  • OMG - in the Business Motivation Model standard (BMM), the business process is defined as an unit that implements strategies and tactics so that the enterprise achieves its goals
  • ALL of these defitions are similar in they describe how an enterprise works
  1. The number of branches is decisive, which make the process complex and unclear for the persons involved
  2. Active business process management - to ensure that an enterprise can successfully respond to changes, it must actively run a business process management (A critical aspect is that business processes are considered and handled as assets within the enterprise
  3. Processes are oriented towards roles not people
  4. Process steps are the activities executed by the roles. Besides the sequence of steps, which is determined by the process, business rules must also be adhered to when they are executed. These include, org policies and standards
  5. Process topology -the explicit processes steps and their interelations
  6. Horizontal versus vertical - processes are typically depicted at the horizontal level; however, you can view vertically the process hierarchy, which shows that the processes can be part of a superordinate process.
  7. Processes are typically focused on flowcharts; however, there is additional information:
  • Process owner
  • Goals of the business
  • customer who benefits
  • stakeholders who can provide important information
  • brief description
  1. The activities - the elementary steps of a process - also have characteristics, such as:
  • Executing role ("work unit")
  • Necessary resources
  • Data that is required or generated
  • Duration
  • Business rules that must be taken into account
  • brief description
  1. Goal - a targeted, desirable state (one goal shall be assigned to every business process)
  2. Business Process Descovery - the goal is to detect implicit knowledge about processes and make it explicit
  3. Basis - the foundation of knowledge about business process that can be improved upon
  4. Business Process Analysis - the purpose of BPA is to provide explict process knowledge. It serves to discover weaknesses and enables actual/target comparisons
  5. Typical examples that require BPA:
  • Diagnosing the root cause of a known process problem
  • Finding unknown weaknesses and bottlenecks
  • Creating standard processes for supply chain interactions, for instance, using SCOR
  • Converging multiple parallel processes, performed by different departments, into a single enterprise-wide standard process
  • Preparing for measure implementation, specifically to perform an analysis of the new measures on existing processes, for instacne, the applicaiton of new business rules
  • Generating function requirements on an IT system
  • Designing the business logic of a process that will be automated using commercial Business Process Management Suite (BPMS)
  1. BPA Process:
  • Discover the as-is process
  • Document the as-is process
  • Analyze the as-is process
  • Define the to-be process
  • Develop te to-be process
  • Introduce the to-be process
  • Implement the to-be process
  • Maintain the to-be process
  • 3 Process roles involved:
    • The sponsor who sets up the BPA project assumes responsibility for it and specifies goals
    • The SME who provide the process content
    • The analysts who control and implement the methodologies
  • 3 main ways to approache the process discovery
    Centralized vs. distributed approach
  • Centralized - workshops, watch out for overly vocal people, difficult to get everyones time, group think
  • Distributed - more democratic, equal opinions, analyst solves inconsistencies, reviewed at end by all
    Top down vs. bottom up
  • Top-down - classic, start with enterprise wide. disadvantage is that process steps that do not fit in the specified hiearchy easily remain undiscovered
  • Bottom-up - starts with detailed activities, SMEs report about their steps, high detail is blessing and curse
    Structured vs. free form approach
  • Structured - SMEs answer predefined questions, leads to consistency, possibly incomplete
  • Free from - SMEs report to analyst without predefined questions
  1. Bruce Silver provides three business process levels:
  • Descriptive: maps business processes at a high level of detail, describes best case, provides overview of process, org units involved, the goal is to communicate business processes across organization units, for example, to upper management
  • Analytical: higher level of detail than descriptive, all cases, handling of events, used to analyze effectiveness of process, level of detail IT departments require to create an implementation that automates
  • Executable: Can directly be used to automate the business process
  1. Private business processes - are internal flows that are specific to an organization
  2. Public business processes - describe the interaction between a private business process and one or more parties involved. Only thoses process steps that are involved in the interaction of the private process are illustrated. The process steps of the interaction partners are not described
  3. Collaborative business process - shows an interaction, just like the public business processes. However, you cna now also include the detailed process steps of the parties involved and the exact sequence of information exchange
  4. To design business process models meaningfully for others, use these modeling principles:
  • If there are abstraction levels, they should follow a purpose
  • Reality is chaotic
  • A diagram must have a clear meaning
  • Process diagrams are aimed at people and show what they do
  • On the one hand, they show what they should do and, on the other hand, what they actually do
  • People work in functions, but perform business processes
  • It is about what th epeople actually do, and not why they do it

Chapter 4 - Basic Principles of Business Process Management

  1. TQM - Total Quality Management

  2. BPR - Business Process Reengineering

  3. According to TQM, the purpose of an organization is to stay in business, so its focus is on preservation, so that it can contribute stability to the colllective, provide customers with products and services, and offer an environment in which the employees oc an organization can develop themselves

  4. 1990s attention shifted to BPR, the goal is to achieve huge progress with regard to cost reduction and quality improvement and not small, incremental steps that take too long overall and thus can jeopardize the existence of the enterprise

  5. Businesses have a function-focused structure

  6. Business processes are orthogonal

  7. Alignment along functions is also referred to as vertical structure, and along the bsuiness processes as horizontal structure

  8. Quote - Continuous improvement is better than delayed perfection - Mark Twain

  9. In Adam Smith's "The Wealth of Nations" written in 1776 - He determined that productivity can be increased considerably by division of labor and specialization

  • This requires the definitions of roles, associated tasks, and a description of how they collaborate
  • which takes us to explicit business processes which should be controlled by management
  1. Side effect of functional focus (status quo) - is isolated optimization of individual process steps and not on the course of the entire process - leading to increased costs and undesireable results
  2. Its the business process management's task to define and implement processes, support performance measurements based on predefined process goals, and optimize processes
  3. It is important to know the process owner when you define and monitor the processes, so that processes can be oriented towards the customers and run optimally
  4. TQM is attributed to William Edwards Deming, Joseph Juran, and Kaoru Ishikawa in the 1940s --> really grew in 1980s pressured by Japan
  5. J. Richard hackmann and Ruth Wageman - The purpose of an organizaiton is to sustain itself so that it can contribute to the stability of the community, provide goods and services to customers and provide an environment for organization members to grow
  6. TQM is also a technique to run continuous quality improvement projects on a regular basis. Principles:
  • Management by process because quality problems often arise there
  • Analysis of variability because uncontrolled variances are the main cause for quality problems
  • Management by fact because quality improvement projects should work on a systematic data basis about the process
  • Quality improvement is a never ending process
  1. The specific techniques of TQM involve:
  • Determine customer requirements
  • Establish supplier relationships on a partnership basis
  • Set up cross-functional teams for quality improvement
  1. Benefits of TQM include:
  • faster response to market changes
  • cross-functional communication and collaboration within the enterprise
  1. Downside of TQM:
  • some functional capabilities must be doubled because they occur in multiple processes
  • if functional org structure maintains, then the org becomes a more complex matrix
  1. In 1990s, the attention shifted from TQM to BPR
  2. Shift was initiated by an article by Thomas Davenport and James R. Short and an article by Michael Hammar
  3. FIRST APPROACH Five-step methodology to achieve process redesign:
  • Develop the business vision and the process objects
  • Identify the business process to be redesigned
  • Understand and measure the existing process
  • Identify IT levers
  • Design and build a prototype of new process
    Assumption - IT is a key enabler of BPM
    Assumption - Process improvement is oriented toward goals and not toward fixing local bottlenecks and other process weaknesses
  1. SECOND APPROACH by Michael Hammer - proposes develop the process from scratch (Leaps instead of Steps)
  2. In the mid 1990s, due to TQM and BPR - busines process management was labeled as an explicit discipline for the first time
  3. It is a management approach that creates the environment necessary to implement improvement methodologies, such as Six Sigma, TQM, or BPR
  4. A common definition comes from Mary J. Benner and Michael L. Tushmann: business process management, based on a view of an organization as a system of interlinked processes, involves concerted efforts to map, improve, and adhere to oranizational processes
  5. The ultimate goal of BPM was specified by Michael Hammer, who defines it as the improvement of products and services using structured service optimization based on systematic design and management of business processes
  6. James F Chang defines the term BPM with four principles and eight tools/practices:
  • Principle 1: Processes are assets
  • Principle 2: Processes should be managed explicitly (measuring, monitoring, controlling, and analyzing)
  • Principle 3: Processes should be continuously improved
  • Principle 4: IT is an essential enabler
  • Practice 1: Establish process-focused organization structures
  • Practice 2: Nominate process owners - responsible for the success of their processes
  • Practice 3: Bottom Up Support - Upper management must support and promote BPM. The process is improved from the bottom up
  • Practice 4: Establish IT systems to monitor, control, analyze, and improve processes
  • Practice 5: Collaborate with busienss partners that are involved in common cross-organizational business processes
  • Practice 6: Training and improvement, train employees regularly, and continuously improve
  • Practice 7: Combine process improvement with bonus payments and awards
  • Practice 8: Utilize both incremental process improvement measures (Six Sigma) and more radical approaches (BPR)
  1. Pressure on enterprises, Howard Smith and Peter Fingar - seven trends:
  • The customer is no longer a king but a dictator
  • Mass production makes way for mass customization
  • Customers demand holistic solutions
  • Boundaries between industries become blurred
  • Enter partnerships
  • Value chains are the measure of competition, who has the best value chain to be able to offer customers a holistic solution
  • Change is the only constant
  1. A challenge in a process-focused organization is to effectively coordinate the functions involved in the process
  2. Daniel J. Madison lists several points on becoming a Process-Focused Organization
  • Culture (shift from individual recognition to process excellence), errors are not considered made by a person, they are an opportunity to improve processes from the insights gained. The values of the organization
  • Concepts (orgs require a mission and vission, strategies must directly relate to the processes
  • Structure - create a formal governing body that oversees the org-wide bus processes and sets priorities and provides resources for projects
  • Technology - IT must provide (support by modeling and testing them, full or partial automation, provision of information, such as key figures)
  1. Business Process Management Suites are deployed to perform process redesigns and to manage and automate enterprise processes
  • these integrate existing back-end systems, with regard to business process operations and provide them with holistic data for a process instance
  1. A complete BPMS includes the functions, process modeling, simulation of process designs, and the monitoring of running process instances
  2. Some BPMS do not execute processes...these require a separate execution engine
  3. Process engines perform the following tasks:
  • Support an executable process design
  • Generate executable process instances
  • Assign user tasks
  • Track and store execution data
  1. To design a process diagram in an executable form, the following simplified stages must be completed:
  • Classification of process activities into "automated" and "manual" (=user task)
  • Re-check of manual activities and possible redesign into automated activities
  • Check activities for identical level of granularity (observer 1:1:1 rule: Can the activity be performed without time interruption, by one person, at one place?)
  • Adapt the process diagram if required
  • Specify attributes of executability (use executable level of BPMN, define process variables, record execution rules, consdier BPMS-specific details)
  1. SOA - Service-oriented architecture - goal is to abstract the mapping of business processes in IT from concrete implementation. Allows you to describe the necessary processes using services without commiting yourself to platforms, programming languages, or other implementation details

Chapter 5 - Business Modeling

  1. A descriptive model of a whole enterprise consists of vision, mission statements, goals, strategies, and realizing tactics, etc.
  2. The OMG business motivation model (BMM) provides a structure by means of which thoses terms can be kept apart --- ensuring clarity in creating an enterprise model
  3. BMM provides a structure for defining and developing a business plan by describing which purposes an enterprise pursues by which means
  4. Top most areas or BMM are:
  • end: describes the vision of the enterprise and the goals and objectives derived thereof
    • vision and desired results
    • goals
    • objectives
  • means: describes which means the enterprise deploys to meet the enterprise objective
    • missions
    • courses of actions
      • strategies and tactics
    • directives
      • business policies
      • business rules
  • influencer: describes to which influencers the enterprise is exposed (current market trends, competitors)
    • internal
    • external to the organization
  • assessment: assesses nuetral influencers on goals and means used
  • external information: addresses further important topics of business modeling that are not part of BMM
    • organization units (OSM Organization Structure Metamodel)
    • business processes (BPDM Business Process Definition Metamodel)
    • business rules (SBVR Semantics of Business Vocabulary and Rules)
  1. BMM has not standard notation, but only abstract syntax
  2. Three elements can be scaled as large as you want:
  • Desired rsult
  • Course of action
  • Business policy
  1. Vision - describes a future image of the enterprise and equally expresses an ultimate, rather impossible, and therefore desirable state
  2. Goal - elaborates on the vision, in other words, it describes a long-term goal that must be achieved to amplify the vision
  3. Objective - A goal can have one to many objectives. An objective has no direct referecne to the vision; instead, it can quantify any number of goals-it makes them measurable
  4. Desired result - both goals and objectives describe some kind of superordinate desired result
  5. Quote - Vision without action is a dream. Action without vision is simply passing the time. Action with vision is making a positive difference - Joel barker
  6. Visions and goals always entail the means required to implement them
  7. Means mainly consist of three elements:
  • Missions as the counterpart to vision
  • Courses of action as the counterpart to desired results
  • Directives
  1. The procedures in an enterpise are implemented through business processes to achieve the mission
  2. In BMM, the means of the enterprise are deliberately described independent of the end. This concept is referrred to as separation of concerns and considers that means can change while the goals remain the same
  3. A mission makes an associated vision operative in the first place
  4. Every mission statement consists of three elements:
  • An action in the form of a verb, for instance, offers
  • A product of service, for instance, training
  • A customer or market, for instance, Red Hat
  1. Every strategy and every tactic is some kind of course of action and, as such, can support any desired results
  2. Strategy vs. Tactic --> tactic implements any number of strategies. From this, a tactic already desribes a very concrete action, while a strategy is still vague
  3. A strategy, in turn, can be implemented by any number of tactics. BMM considers the strategy as part of the mission's implementation plan to achieve the goals
  4. While the two courses of action, strategy and tactic, only make statements on what is done, a directive describes how it is done.
  5. Every directive can govern any number of courses of action and support any number of desired results (goals and objectives)
  6. A directive is either a business policy or a business rule
  7. BMM provides an enforcement level for every business rule. The enforcement level can have two characteristics:
  • Strict - The business rule must be adhered to. It becomes an organizational procedure
  • Guideline - The business rule should be adhered to, but deviations may occur in justified exceptions
  1. Influencers are just there until someone makes an assessment - important to describe the influencer neutrally and not subject to assessment
  2. Default Categories for External Influencers:
  • Competitors
  • Customers
  • Partners
  • Vendors
  • Environment
  • Regulation
  • Technologies
  1. Default Categories for Internal Influencers:
  • Assumption
  • Enterprise value (implicit, explicit)
  • Habit
  • Infrastructure
  • Point of issue
  • (Management) priviledge
  • Resources, supplies
  1. Organizational Unit - who executes the tactics, follows the business processes, and or complies with the business rules:
  • Defines ends
  • Establishes means
  • Recognizes influencers
  • Makes assessments
  • Defines strategies
  • Is resposible for a business process
  1. The Art of Abstraction - abstractions are necessary to structure complex situations and reduce them to manageable and comprehensive dimension
  2. Good modeling is the art of getting concrete at an abstract level - Tim Weilkiens
  3. Static models - map a specific structure
  4. Dynamic models - mainly illustrate activities of people, decisions, and the collaboration of departments
  5. Everything is a system. Everything that you can perceive as a unit of structures and interactive elements constitutes a system
  6. Syntax can be broken down into concrete and abstract syntax:
  • Concrete syntax - is the (usually graphical) visualization of vocabulary, which is referred to as notion.
  • Abstract syntax - involves a set of defined vocabulary (vision, goal, and so on) and is structural context. In BMM, this abstract syntax is illustrated as UML modls
  1. Graphical models have the following benefits:
  • Graphics can be understood and memorized faster
  • A specific perspective of reality can be presented in a targeted manner
  • An existing metamodel already provides a meaning for the concrete model, without having to document it explicitly once again
  1. Semantics - describes the meaning and the use of the model element if required.

Chapter 6 - Modeling Business Processes Using BPMN

  1. A BPD consists of activities, events, and gateways, which a sequence flow puts in a flow sequence. Activities, events, and gateways are summarized under the term flow object.
  2. Business processes consist of work steps that require resources and are executed by organization units or IT systems.
  3. In BPMN, work steps are modeled using activities:
  • task
  • subprocess
  • process
  1. There are eight predefined task types that describe the behavior of a task
  2. In 2002, Stephan A. White developed a previous version of the current BPMN in cooperation with the BPMI (Business Process Management Initiative).
  3. Since 2006, BPMN has been an international standard of OMG
  4. Goals of BPMN:
  • A standardized graphical notation exists for modeling business processes
  • The notation can be understood by all stakeholders - from ba to process implementer
  • The notation allows for the mapping of a graphical notation in an executable XML-based process language - for example, Web Service Business Process Execution Language (WSBPEL)
  • Allows an interchange of diagrams between tools, using an interchange format and execution semations using a process engine
  1. BPMN supports three diagrams:
  • the process diagram
  • conversation diagram
  • choreography diagrams
  1. BPMN is not focused on:
  • Structure of organization units
  • Structure of resources
  • Data and information models
  • Business strategies
  • Business rules
  1. Process diagrams have three types of flow objects placed in a flow sequence:
  • activities
  • events
  • gateways
  1. Comments - are indicated with an open square bracket in BPMN and can be linked with outher model elements using a broken line --- the association
  2. Start events - the start point of the flow, two types:
  • Timer (specific date time / re-ocurring)
  • Message (incoming email / phone call)
  1. Token - as soon as the start event occurs, process starts and a token is generated for the outbound sequence flow. The token can proliferate or be destroyed. The instance of the defined process ends when the last token is resolved
  2. BPMN provides two ways to illustrate parallel flows:
  • explicit - using a parallel gateway
  • implicit, using several sequence flows that exit an activity
  1. An exclusive gateway (diamond without a plus sign) - indicates that exactly one alternative can be selected
  2. Conditional sequence flow - daimonds coming directly out of the activity, if several conditions are true, all sequence flows receive a token. The flow is parallelized, depending on the conditions
  3. Default flow (indicated by a slash on the flow line) - it receives a token if none of the conditions specified are true - prevents deadlock
  4. Subprocess (indicated by an activity with a plus sign) - means that the subprocess has been collapsed
  5. Data objects - the model representing business objects, the process can create, change, or destroy this information
  6. Pool - are used to subdivide a process according to different organizations
  7. Message Flows - Every pool is responsible for its process and can communicate with other pools via message flows
  8. Lane - the way to structure an organization by groups or roles, lanes communicate with other lanes within the same pool using sequence flows
  9. Token - is some sort of virtual marble, which is generated when a process is called and stands for a concrete flow along events, activities, gateways, and sequence flows.
  10. A token never crosses the message flow to reach the flow of another pool
  11. A start event cannot have an incoming sequence flow
  12. An end event cannot have an outgoing sequence flow
  13. Activities - business processes consist of work steps that require resources and are executed by organization units or IT systems. works steps are modeled using activities
  14. Activity - describes a work step within a business process, they can be:
  • Task
    • atomic
  • Subprocess
    • Non-atomic
    • collapsed or expanded
  • Process
    • Non Atomic
    • No Notation
  1. Task - is an atomic activity within a process, that is, the task is not detailed as a graphic in the model
  2. Subprocess - consists of refactored BPMN diagram (with activities, gateways, events, and sequence flows)
  3. Call - It can be used for tasks and subprocesses. A call enables you to call a task or a process that was defined at another location. This element is used for reuse
  4. A reuseable subprocess can contain several pools
  5. An embedded subprocess does not have any pools and lanes
  6. Activity Types:
  • None - blank
  • Subprocess - Plus sign
  • Loop - Reload arrow
  • Multiple instances - three lines
  • Ad-hoc subprocess - tilde plus
  • Transaction - Double border plus
  • Compensatoin - double left arrow
  • Call activity - none
  1. Loop - is repeated until the loop condition is met (changes from true to false) - defined in the activity's properties
  2. Multiple instance - is started multiple times in parallel (vertical lines) or sequentially (horizontal lines) using different data
  3. Ad-hoc subprocess can be executed in an order
  4. Transaction - is a subprocess that must be executed completely successfully or reversed. A transaction is an indivisible whole
  5. Compensation - is an explicit reverse action and describes the steps that are necessary to reverse activities that have been completed successfully
  6. Task Types:
  • Abstract task - the behavior of the task is not specified in more detail
  • Send task - it sends messages to other external participants (pools) - send tasks must not have any incoming message flows (it is an alternative notation form to the throw event with the message trigger
  • Receive task - waits for messages from external participants (pools) and receives them. Once a message is received, the task is completed and the token leaves the task. Receive task must not have any outgoing message flows
  1. Manual task - does not require IT support - filing a letter in a file cabinet
  2. User task - is a semiautomated step which the executor performs with the support of a system
  3. Service task - uses some kind of service, for example, a web service or automated application. Message flows are permitted to indicate where the service is called
  4. Script task - is run by a process engine
  5. Gateway - controls how the sequence flow spreads and merges within a process
  6. Types of gateways:
  • Data-based exclusive gateway
    • blank
    • X
  • Event-based exclusive gateway
    • double circumscribed pentagon
  • Parallel gateway
    • plus sign
  • Inclusive gateway
    • circle
  • Complex gateway
    • asterisk
  1. Exclusive gateway - restricts the sequence flow in such a way that exactly one alternative is selected from a set of alternatives at runtime
  2. Decision - exclusive gateway corresponds to a typical "either-or" decision where exactly one alternative is selected
  3. Merge - If an exclusive gateway joins a flow, every incoming token immediately goes through the gateway and continues the flow without delay
  4. Data-based exclusive gateway - decides, depending on the conditions in the sequence flow, how the token migrates. The decision whether a condition is true or false can be made at runtime based on the process data provided
  5. Event based exclusive gateway - that decides which flow in continued based on the occurence of one of the events
  6. Parallel gateway - splits the sequence flow into two or more parallel flows or synchronizes or merges the parallel flows again. The synchronization waits until all incoming sequence flows hav arrived. Only then is the flow continued
  7. No conditions are allowed in the parallel gateways sequence flow
  8. Inclusive gateway - the sequence flows receive one or more tokens, depending on the branch conditions
  9. Event - something that happens during a business process and starts, ends, delays, or interrupts the flow
  • start event - single circle thin
  • intermediate event - double circle thin
  • end event - thick single circle
  1. Two types of intermediate events:
  • Throw event - When the token reaches the throw event, this event is executed and the flow is immediately continued
  • Catch event - the token waits until the intermediate event occurs. Only then is the flow continued
  1. End event with terminate type - all activities are cancelled immediately and the entire process ends
  2. End event without event type - only the incoming token is switched off
  3. A subprocess cannot terminate its superordinate processes through a terminate event
  4. Signal events - are not aimed at a specific receiver or a specific process instance and they can be seen, heard, or felt (e.g., light signal, a horn)
  5. Condition events - if a token reaches this event, the event's condition is checked. If the condition is true, the token continues, if not, it waits until it is true
Notes from - OCEB 2 Certification Guide: Business Process Management - Fundamental Level
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