Whither CMMN?

  • December 18, 2014
  • Scott
  • 14 Comments

With the announcement of Camunda’s support for CMMN, and this past summer, IBM quietly introducing CMMN features into IBM BPM 8.5.5, is CMMN ready for the spotlight?

When I wrote this:

Interestingly, none of the bigger BPM vendors are really focused on improving BPM functionality.  This means lots of opportunity for new vendors and upstarts to make some noise, because the depth of BPM functionality hasn’t been fully plumbed, but the move to cloud, mobile, and HTML5 for the bigger vendors has been a distraction from their focus on core tech of BPM. Even the smaller vendors that focused on cloud and mobile successfully, have just failed to innovate in BPM for years.

CMMN was one of the things on my mind for just raw BPM innovation.  Incorporating CMMN into your BPM engine is A Big Deal.  Only one major vendor and one smaller vendor have added CMMN concepts so far (that I’m aware of – please, if I’m overlooking someone let me know in the comment stream so that I can amend this).

IBM hinted at their release at bpmNEXT 2014 when they showed a preview of what was released in June.  Sandy feels that there will be a pile on of vendors supporting CMMN over the next year – but I’m not so sure.  Who are the likely candidates?

  • Will Pega support CMMN?  Already one of the knocks against them is how they support BPMN…
  • Will Appian?
  • Will Tibco?
  • Will IBM continue to invest in CMMN?

Or will CMMN be the opportunity for Camunda, Trisotech, and other smaller vendors to differentiate?  I don’t see the momentum behind the notation, despite its usefulness, amongst vendors – but Sandy may have a better view of what hasn’t been released yet thanks to her consulting and analyst work with vendors.

To clarify – I’m not critical of CMMN itself.  I think it very usefully makes the notational representation for the problems it describes much simpler than BPMN.  And the notation sits alongside BPMN quite well – and as others have previously noted BPMN engines are well suited to implement this kind of asynchronous event-based logic.  The question is whether vendors see it as differentiating or necessary to compete. I’m not convinced that the vendors are focused on CMMN (or BPM in general), rather than on mobile/social/local/cloud.

Sets up for an interesting 2015.

 

 

 

 

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