Bruce Silver: Just Enough BPMN

  • June 10, 2010
  • Scott
  • 2 Comments

Bruce Silver writes about the “right amount” of BPMN for the business:

In a way, we’re still back to the question Michael and I were wrestling with a couple years ago.  Do you want to limit the BPMN palette to what business users already know (or think they know) from traditional flowcharting, and allow them to bend the semantics and rules?  Or do you want to raise the bar and say here is a common process language that can be shared between business and IT?  That takes a bit of education or training, since they probably don’t already know how to use it properly. But it’s not rocket science.

He goes on to say that he prefers the latter.  In general, I do too.  Once upon a time flowchart symbols weren’t familiar to businesses either.  People can adapt to new notations and skills.  BPMN isn’t *that* hard conceptually.

Of course, using a subset for white-boarding makes perfect sense because you are in a conversation, and if you draw something that isn’t precisely the right kind of gateway but write a note next to it or explain what you want, the people in the room will understand.  I use a form of shorthand BPMN when I whiteboard that works well for me.  You know someone does this a lot if they draw the message events in one continuous pen stroke (envelope and all).

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