Category Archive for "ACM"

Treat the Work as Interchangeable, not the People

Keith Swenson writes about BPM, repeating, and facilitation: Imagine a BPM expert suggesting that you process was run differently every time, and suggesting that if it did actually repeat itself it would be a dead end!  That is the difference

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The Optimist’s View of Automation

Keith Swenson recently wrote about the positive side of automation – that it elevates workers rather than eliminating them.  And history has so far proven Keith right time and time again: History actually shows a different story.  While automation undoubtedly

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Critique of Task Management

Anatoly often brings great issues to the table – the kind of problems we and our clients wrestle with periodically – and gives some great analysis of potential solutions. This time, the subject is “Task Management” in the context of

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The Myth of Micromanaging (with BPM)

I have to admit that the myth of micromanaging as a requirement of BPM is one of those things that just irritates me.  Even more so when people in the ACM community foist that upon the BPM community, of which

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Videos from #bpmNEXT: BPM for Mobile, Mobile for BPM

As I’ve written before, bpmNEXT was a fantastic event, and we put up quite a few posts about it over the following weeks.  In the midst of all the IBM Impact posts that we’re catching up on, the videos from

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Abstraction and Collaboration

John Reynolds writes that “Gathering, Reviewing and Approving are almost always Collaborative“ Of course he’s right.  And in fact, rather than explicitly model such things: I’d recommend modeling the review process as a self-contained “activity”.  Prepare proposal should be separated

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Antifragile or Reactive?

Keith Swenson is probably the foremost proponent of ACM.  He has a new series of blog posts and talks that touch on Nicholas Taleb’s book “Antifragile,” a new wrinkle on his theme of knowledge work and ACM.  His presentation at

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Does Modeling Inhibit Innovation?

Does Modeling Inhibit Innovation?  Phrased that way, it sounds silly. Of course it doesn’t.  We use models all the time to improve our understanding, or our ability to communicate about what the model represents. But it has been en vogue

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Data, Not Language

Keith Swenson makes an (unnecessary but) persuasive argument that Doctors shouldn’t have to code or use BPMN (a two-dimensional graphing) approach to their processes. He presents the straw man of: Graphical-only language, e.g. BPMN – and why he doesn’t think

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Tilting at Windmills

There’s nothing like putting up a straw man to win an argument.  First, you can propose arguments taken out of context, and secondly, there’s really no one on the other end arguing, you’re just arguing with yourself. Still, Keith Swenson’s

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I Can Relate

When I read this post “Nothing New in Case Management” I felt like I can relate to what Keith is feeling.  Not that I’m defending every word of the article, but how many times have we heard that there’s “nothing

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Bruce Calls for a Cease-Fire

Bruce Silver’s post could be interpreted as calling for a cease-fire in the BPM-ACM debate: It boggles my mind that we are still having this debate, but there it is: Is BPMN compatible with ACM?  The latest round started with

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Imperatives and Declaratives

Keith Swenson has a pretty interesting post on the possible use of declarative language to describe process, based on what he heard at BPM2012. Technically, BPMN is a hybrid of declarative and imperative (much like make or ant)- because you

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Looking Under the Hood

Well.  This was a pleasant surprise.  At the end of one of Keith Swenson’s posts on ACM, he wrote this: ClarificationSome have thought that what I mean here is about underlying technology “under the covers”.   As if this was a

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More Reports in from #BPM2012: Process Cloud

Keith Swenson had a great writeup of a session entitled “Managing & Tracing the Traversals of Process Clouds with Templates, Agendas and Artifacts”: The concept “Open Process Clouds” has nothing to do with cloud computing, but rather parts of a

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#BPM2012: ACM Rears its Head

I haven’t spent as much time this year as in previous years discussing ACM because for the most part, ACM advocates have stopped spending all their time trying to prove that BPM “can’t do” ACM. Sandy Kemsley, however, attended the

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Sandy Kemsley gets the Scoop on ISIS Papyrus

One of the invaluable contributions independent consultants like Sandy make to the field of BPM is cross-pollinating information between otherwise disconnected communities. One of the products I’ve been curious about for years – ever since I started participating in the

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Is BPM Good for "Tasks for Knowledge Workers"?

John Reynolds’ Thoughtful Programmer blog is full of good information, and once in a while I need to call out a particularly good post for comment.  Recently he wrote about Tasks for Knowledge Workers, offering up one generalization of these

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ACM and Product/Market fit

David Brakoniecki chimes in on ACM’s product/market fit problem, and hopefully he won’t mind me quoting liberally from his post.  On the one hand, there is the rock:  free or nearly free software from various providers that addresses the freelance/collaboration

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Kraft on Taylorism

Frank Michael Kraft’s post on Taylorism is interesting, in that it is a response to Jakob Freund’s post on the same subject, but with a different perspective, and a pretty balanced view. Since I mostly agree with his post I’ll

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Will ACM eclipse BPM?

Peter Schooff once again asks the provocative question: “Will case management eclipse BPM in importance this year?” The answers were pretty interesting.  I guess I should first own up to my own: Short answer : no. More thoughtful answer :

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Fill in the White Space, and Inverting the Process Life Cycle

It isn’t easy to fill in the white space.  It is harder to design a good software solution from scratch than to fix a bug in an otherwise working solution, or to design a small addition to a working piece

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A Defense of Taylorism

Jakob Freund has written an interesting defense of Taylorism, and he makes a few interesting points that I don’t recall seeing in previous discussions about ACM v BPM. Actually, when I am driving, I am a zombie worker most of

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Lamenting Definitions

In a flurry of posts recently there’s another attempt to sever ACM and BPM.  It’s a strange urgency among some ACM advocates to separate it from the idea of managing business processes. Keith misinterpreted my recent post on ACM/BPM –

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Bruce Silver Weighs in on Metaphysical Questions

Bruce Silver, never one to shy from a debate, weighs in with a post I largely agree with: The question is BPM part of case management, or is case management part of BPM? is a metaphysical one.  I think, however,

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John Reynolds: Disappearing BPM Programmer?

John Reynolds writes about the curious case of the disappearing BPM Programmer: So where does this distinction between Case and Process leave the BPM Programmer?  Are BPM skills irrelevant in the new world of Dynamic Case Management and Social Process? 

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Activiti's take on BPM in the Cloud

I think this post by Activiti‘s Tom Baeyens reveals a blind-spot in the folks behind open source BPM tooling. To be clear: it isn’t a bad post, and I agree with his conclusions! Which are, summarized: “hosting traditional BPM engine

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A Process for Golf? #bpm

A process for golf?  Or just another analogy designed to prove the deficiencies of BPM? Ran across a lighthearted post from Jacob Ukelson regarding the process for playing golf.  Well, the thrust of the post is that differentiating processes can

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Count me in for Simplicity

There’s an argument that says the world is too complex for humans to understand.  Further, that by thinking we understand cause-and-effect, we’re doomed to act in ways that have unforeseen (usually negative) consequences.  It is a really interesting debate, and

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Music and BPM

Update: In the interest of clarity I’ve updated the second-to-last paragraph of this post. Anyone following the #BPM hashtag on twitter has probably been amused at times because we also get a fair number of posts about BPM the XM/Sirius

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Dave Brakoniecki Sums up the ACM/DCM Discussion

David Brakoniecki comments on the ACM discussion on LinkedIn: Over on Linkedin, there is a spirited debate over several aspects of the Adaptive Case Management (ACM) movement going on.  The whole thread makes is worthwhile a read if you are

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BPM Could Save Your Life

Not that long ago, one of the prime examples given by Keith Swenson in support of the “ACM approach” was a medical example (picture Dr. House examining the really-out-there cases) – check out the comment stream from this post for

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If there's no Design, is there Design by Doing?

Jim Sinur raises this question in a non-confrontational way in his recent blog post.  It’s good to see him back at blogging on the subject of BPM after a short hiatus.  The trend he predicts: As BPM matures it will

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I like the Idea, but Disagree with one Conclusion

Jacob Ukelson, in his post Time for a Process Manifesto? , picks up some ideas from the Agile Manifesto: Individuals and interactions over processes and tools Working software over comprehensive documentation Customer collaboration over contract negotiation Responding to change over

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There's a Reason for the P in BPM

The “P” is for Process. I think Mihnea Galeteanu coincidentally gives us a great anecdote for why it doesn’t make sense to try to change the terms of the discussion or debate from “process” to “case”, or from BPM to

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The 2×2 chart of BPM Niches

Jacob Ukelson’s post about extending Data Loss Prevention through ACM took time out to list out four areas of “process” work if you will: BPM (Business Process Management) – The focus is on structured data (forms) and structured flow. ECM

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Barely a Year Old, and ACM is Dead

(Editor’s note: I’ll just apologize now for the sensational title) Well, actually, Max J. Pucher is declaring ACM dead, and Adaptive as the worthy successor to ACM (“ACM is Dead! Long live ADAPTIVE!“).  But the article overall is curious –

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Required Reading for ACM & BPM Advocates

Anatoly’s excellent blog turns its attention to ACM: Adaptive Case Management was one of the most discussed BPM topics in 2010. It transformed from fuzzy marketing noise into a more or less consistent concept over the past year. Why “more

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Another take on ACM: Feature or Paradigm

I missed this post from Keith Swenson the other day, as he responds to Anatoly’s post on ACM. Keith cuts to the chase: Anatoly Belychook asks the question: “is ACM a Paradigm or a Feature?” I could not resist responding

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Adding Ad-Hoc to BPM

Joram Barrez recently announced that the Activiti team has added the ability to define and run ad-hoc processes on Activiti.  The processes are directly deployable, so they’re first class citizens to Activiti.  This goes along with what I’ve said before,

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Business is only as Simple as it is.

Anatoly uses an example of a cross-functional process to show how one can dramatically oversimplify how an actual business works – and as a result, write a really “broken” process. The key insight he offers is this:  a BPM isn’t

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MWD on BPM in 2011

I’m a fan of MWD and their coverage of BPM and related topics.  They have a bit of edge to their analysis, and aren’t afraid to go out on a limb. So it was with great interest that I clicked

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Process, Structure, and the Illusion of Hindsight vs. Foresight

The argument over what a process is continues.  As well, the argument over what is BPM and what is ACM.  Two articles recently on the subject.  First, Michael Poulin argues that all process is structured, and that ACM is not

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Risks of ACM Failure in 2011?

Jacob’s post on what could cause ACM to fail in 2011 is interesting, especially in that it comes from an ACM proponent.  A couple of statements jumped out at me: Here is the catch – business folks don’t really understand

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Sandy Kemsley Covers IBM's Case Manager product

Sandy Kemsley covers IBM’s Case Manager product: The end-user experience for Case Manager is in the IBM Mashup Center, a mashup/widget environment that allows the inclusion of both IBM’s widgets and any other that support the iWidget standard and expose

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Process for the People

What is Social? There’s been much discussion of late on “Social BPM“.  In particular, when should the magic “social” stuff happen – at design-time, or at run-time, of a process?  There has also been a significant overlap with discussion around

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Jacob's Twelve Step Program

I didn’t actually see twelve steps in this post, but I really like the framing of the discussion.  And most of it I agree with: Don’t try to structure every process. Most of the world’s business processes are currently unstructured

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Respect for The Knowledge Worker

Tom Shepherd writes about the pride of the knowledge worker: I had this point hammered home almost immediately as I was immersed into product and user research. See, as “automate and improve” types, we are often taught to believe that

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2011 a Breakout Year for ACM?

Jacob Ukelson posed this question the other day: So where does all this leave us? I think that in 2011 we’ll start seeing business user backlash to BPMS – they will want more participant control over process, faster start up

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Adam Deane Covers Keith Swenson

Adam Deane’s recent post about Keith Swenson’s blog was quite interesting to me. Keith has been blogging on BPM for the last 4 years. The first couple of years were mainly around notations, standards and development. The next year had

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