Business Process Management – Concepts, Languages, Architectures

Mathias Weske, 2nd ed. 2012. ISBN 978-3-642-28615-5

Business process management is usually treated from two different perspectives: business administration and computer science. While business administration professionals tend to consider information technology as a subordinate aspect in business process management for experts to handle, by contrast computer science professionals often consider business goals and organizational regulations as terms that do not deserve much thought but require the appropriate level of abstraction.

Mathias Weske argues that all communities involved need to have a common understanding of the different aspects of business process management. To this end, he details the complete business process lifecycle from the modeling phase to process enactment and improvement, taking into account all different stakeholders involved. After starting with a presentation of general foundations and abstraction models, he explains concepts like process orchestrations and choreographies, as well as process properties and data dependencies. Finally, he presents both traditional and advanced business process management architectures, covering, for example, workflow management systems, service-oriented architectures, and data-driven approaches. In addition, he shows how standards like WfMC, SOAP, WSDL, and BPEL fit into the picture.

This textbook is ideally suited for classes on business process management, information systems architecture, and workflow management. This 2nd edition contains major updates on BPMN Version 2 process orchestration and process choreographies, and the chapter on BPM methodologies has been completely rewritten. The accompanying website http://www.bpm-book.com contains further information and additional teaching material.

Modern Business Process Automation – YAWL and its Support Environment

A.H.M. ter Hofstede, W.M.P. van der Aalst, M. Adams, and N. Russell (Eds.), 2010. ISBN 978-3-642-03120-5

This book provides a comprehensive treatment of the field of Business Process Management (BPM) with a focus on Business Process Automation. It achieves this by covering a wide range of topics, both introductory and advanced, illustrated through and grounded in the YAWL (Yet Another Workflow Language) language and corresponding open-source support environment. In doing so it provides the reader with a deep, timeless, and vendor-independent understanding of the essential ingredients of business process automation.

The BPM field is in a continual state of flux and is subject to both the ongoing proposal of new standards and the introduction of new tools and technology. Its fundamentals however are relatively stable and this book aims to equip the reader with both a thorough understanding of them and the ability to apply them to better understand, assess and utilize new developments in the BPM field.

As a consequence of its topic-based format and the inclusion of a broad range of exercises, the book is eminently suitable for use in tertiary education, both at the undergraduate and the postgraduate level, for students of computer science and information systems. BPM researchers and practitioners will also find it a valuable resource. The book serves as a unique reference to a varied and comprehensive collection of topics that are relevant to the business process life-cycle.

Handbook on Business Process Management (1 & 2) – Introduction, Methods, and Information Systems; Strategic Alignment, Governance, People and Culture

Jan vom Brocke and Michael Rosemann (Eds.), 2010. ISBN 978-3-642-00415-5, ISBN 978-3-642-01981-4

This book provides a comprehensive treatment of the field of Business Process Management (BPM) with a focus on Business Process Automation. It achieves this by covering a wide range of topics, both introductory and advanced, illustrated through and grounded in the YAWL (Yet Another Workflow Language) language and corresponding open-source support environment. In doing so it provides the reader with a deep, timeless, and vendor-independent understanding of the essential ingredients of business process automation.

The BPM field is in a continual state of flux and is subject to both the ongoing proposal of new standards and the introduction of new tools and technology. Its fundamentals however are relatively stable and this book aims to equip the reader with both a thorough understanding of them and the ability to apply them to better understand, assess and utilize new developments in the BPM field.

As a consequence of its topic-based format and the inclusion of a broad range of exercises, the book is eminently suitable for use in tertiary education, both at the undergraduate and the postgraduate level, for students of computer science and information systems. BPM researchers and practitioners will also find it a valuable resource. The book serves as a unique reference to a varied and comprehensive collection of topics that are relevant to the business process life-cycle.

Process Mining – Discovery, Conformance and Enhancement of Business Processes

Wil M.P. van der Aalst, 2010. ISBN 978-3-642-19344-6

More and more information about business processes is recorded by information systems in the form of so-called “event logs”. Despite the omnipresence of such data, most organizations diagnose problems based on fiction rather than facts. Process mining is an emerging discipline based on process model-driven approaches and data mining. It not only allows organizations to fully benefit from the information stored in their systems, but it can also be used to check the conformance of processes, detect bottlenecks, and predict execution problems.

Wil van der Aalst delivers the first book on process mining. It aims to be self-contained while covering the entire process mining spectrum from process discovery to operational support. In Part I, the author provides the basics of business process modeling and data mining necessary to understand the remainder of the book. Part II focuses on process discovery as the most important process mining task. Part III moves beyond discovering the control flow of processes and highlights conformance checking, and organizational and time perspectives. Part IV guides the reader in successfully applying process mining in practice, including an introduction to the widely used open-source tool ProM. Finally, Part V takes a step back, reflecting on the material presented and the key open challenges.

Overall, this book provides a comprehensive overview of the state of the art in process mining. It is intended for business process analysts, business consultants, process managers, graduate students, and BPM researchers.

Enabling Flexibility in Process-Aware Information Systems – Challenges, Methods, Technologies

Manfred Reichert and Barbara Weber, 2012. ISBN 978-3-642-30408-8

In today’s dynamic business world, the success of a company increasingly depends on its ability to react to changes in its environment in a quick and flexible way. Companies have therefore identified process agility as a competitive advantage to address business trends like increasing product and service variability or faster time to market, and to ensure business IT alignment. Along this trend, a new generation of information systems has emerged—so-called process-aware information systems (PAIS), like workflow management systems, case handling tools, and service orchestration engines.

With this book, Reichert and Weber address these flexibility needs and provide an overview of PAIS with a strong focus on methods and technologies fostering flexibility for all phases of the process lifecycle (i.e., modeling, configuration, execution and evolution). Their presentation is divided into six parts. Part I starts with an introduction of fundamental PAIS concepts and establishes the context of process flexibility in the light of practical scenarios. Part II focuses on flexibility support for pre-specified processes, the currently predominant paradigm in the field of business process management (BPM). Part III details flexibility support for loosely specified processes, which only partially specify the process model at build-time, while decisions regarding the exact specification of certain model parts are deferred to the run-time. Part IV deals with user- and data-driven processes, which aim at a tight integration of processes and data, and hence enable an increased flexibility compared to traditional PAIS. Part V introduces existing technologies and systems for the realization of a flexible PAIS. Finally, Part VI summarizes the main ideas of this book and gives an outlook on advanced flexibility issues.

The book’s target groups include researchers, PhD students and Master students in the field of information systems. After reading the book, they will better understand PAIS flexibility aspects. To support the easy use as a textbook, a series of exercises is provided at the end of each chapter and slides and further teaching material are available on the book’s web site www.flexible-processes.com. Professionals specializing in business process management (BPM) who want to obtain a good understanding of flexibility challenges in BPM and state-of-the-art solutions will also benefit from the presentations of open source as well as commercial process management systems and related practical scenarios.

Fundamentals of Business Process Management

M. Dumas, M. La Rosa, J. Mendling, and H. Reijers, 2013. ISBN 978-3-642-33142-8

Business Process Management (BPM) is the art and science of how work should be performed in an organization in order to ensure consistent outputs and to take advantage of improvement opportunities, e.g. reducing costs, execution times or error rates. Importantly, BPM is not about improving the way individual activities are performed, but rather about managing entire chains of events, activities and decisions that ultimately produce added value for an organization and its customers.

This textbook encompasses the entire BPM lifecycle, from process identification to process monitoring, covering along the way process modelling, analysis, redesign and automation. Concepts, methods and tools from business management, computer science and industrial engineering are blended into one comprehensive and inter-disciplinary approach. The presentation is illustrated using the BPMN industry standard defined by the Object Management Group and widely endorsed by practitioners and vendors worldwide.

In addition to explaining the relevant conceptual background, the book provides dozens of examples, more than 100 hands-on exercises – many with solutions – as well as numerous suggestions for further reading. The textbook is the result of many years of combined teaching experience of the authors, both at the undergraduate and graduate levels as well as in the context of professional training. Students and professionals from both business management and computer science will benefit from the step-by-step style of the textbook and its focus on fundamental concepts and proven methods. Lecturers will appreciate the class-tested format and the additional teaching material available on the accompanying website.