BP3 to Offer Enterprise Support for Activiti

Scott Francis
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Earlier today, Alfresco announced a new Enterprise support offering for Activiti BPM.  Joram was right to point out that we’ve been keeping an interested eye on Activiti since their first release in 2010:

BP3 is a well-known company in the Business Process Management space. They operate from Austin, Texas (US), and have a vast expertise across multiple industries on deploying BPM projects. Scott Francis, the CTO of BP3 is a leading thought-leader and BPM blogger. Actually, Scott has blogged about Activiti since its first release and has followed and blogged about Activiti since then with great interest. Of course Scott is accompanied with a team of awesome people called the ‘BP3 Labs Group’ which will help driving the innovation in Activiti.

Besides being flattered by Joram’s characterization of BP3, we’re also excited about this new association with Activiti BPM for a few reasons.  But I think a legitimate question some people will ask is, “why now?”  In other words, After three years, why is BP3 interested in being an official Activiti partner now?  It turns out “why” and “why now” are pretty much the same:

First of all, BP3 was a much smaller company in 2010 than we are today.  BPM is also a much bigger and more diverse market than it was in 2010.  And it is clear that there is room over time for more than one approach to BPM to flourish in the market.  In 2010, IBM had just purchased Lombardi, and we were spending all of our energy and spare compute cycles on growing our business and our capacity to manage the growth in the Lombardi/IBM BPM ecosystem.    Three years later, our commitment to IBM BPM has, if anything, grown stronger.  And yet, we are now a big enough organization to handle spinning up another BPM practice, without taking our eye off the ball.  When Tijs and Joram approached us this year about providing enterprise support for Activiti, the timing was right for us to help, without reducing our commitment to our existing market and customer base.

Second, over the last two years, we’ve built up the BP Labs team at BP3.  BP Labs has been spearheading innovation for the consumption of our team and customers, but they’ve also been providing an excellent Development support offering to IBM BPM customers.  Providing Enterprise support for Activiti fits in naturally with what we’re already doing in BP Labs, and we think will strengthen our ability to serve both markets.

Third, we think there are great opportunities for cross-pollination between Open Source and Commercial BPM systems.  We wanted to work with an open source project that was interested in having us contribute to the project, and bring assets to the project, as Alfresco and the Activiti team are.  We think we can bring some pretty interesting mobile and responsive UI solutions to the Activiti platform, for example, taking what we learned from building Brazos and adapting those ideas to the Activiti platform.

But this cross-pollination doesn’t go just one way.  In fact, working and talking with the Activiti team over the last few months influenced how we go-to-market with tools for the IBM BPM market.  We developed the Brazos UI Toolkit for IBM BPM with the notion of selling it with a commercial license.  But we’re applying what we’re learning from the open source community – and that led us to offer Brazos for free to the IBM BPM ecosystem.

Finally, we think our strengths on human-facing processes and knowledge work will be very complementary to the existing Activiti strengths in embedded BPM solutions.  We’ll continue to bring our brand of customer-focused and revenue-focused BPM to the table, regardless of the technology involved.

Check out the official Activiti support page here.