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BPM for machines or for people

I have to say that from a Computer Science perspective, I agree with Tom Baeyens, BPMN seems to reverse many of the lessons that we have learned (we have the lumps on the head to prove it). However, I think that this misses the point of BPM. According to Adobe, some 85% of business processes are executed by people. I think that this figure is not likely to change anytime soon.

In effect, this is saying that BPM is a natural descendant of Workflow; except in the modern era where Web services are expected to be plentiful and processes span ownership boundaries.

When it is primarily people that are expected to execute a process, they are significantly less tolerant of constraints such as “don't do that, it is too hard to get right”.

BPM lives right on the boundary between IT and business. That means that neither 'side' gets to dominate the issues and vocabulary. Business Process designers need BPM because they have to get their multitude of processes right. IT architects need BPM because it defines their responsibilities in a relatively unambiguous way. eBusiness process designers need it because 'getting it right' for business between partners is too expensive at the moment.

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