A Blackstone Technology Group Enterprise BPM Consulting Services Point of Viewby Clay Almy, Directory of Enterprise Integration, Blackstone Technology Group.

It remains true that the most valuable aspect of the Business Process Management (BPM) discipline is its ability to help an organization govern rather than just manage, but this ability requires a comprehensive view of the technologies and methods that truly make up enterprise class BPM. It also requires real time, collaborative information sharing from both the governance and participant perspectives. Executing to such a view can help deliver IT Governance Process Integration benefits, in real time.  

Blackstone Business Process Management and AutomationBPM proponents often focus on the benefits of process modeling and workflow, but in order to be truly successful, organizations must recognize that workflow and automation solutions provide only a small fraction of the benefit that can be derived from BPM. In order for an organization to reap greater benefit from BPM, it must define and automate the processes (Business Process Automation, or BPA), establish real-time monitoring using business activity monitoring (BAM) techniques, and actively push this information to real time Business Intelligence (BI) aggregation and reporting artifacts. Further, a group’s ability to streamline the activities related to improving the process through process simulation and agile methods will provide an additional layer of flexibility and value to the overall organization. In order to achieve the real time Business Intelligence driven by BPM and BAM, a commitment to both technical and organizational focus is required.

On the technical front, a healthy SOA based foundation is necessary to provide a standardized base on which to overlay the organization’s processes and service requirements, but more importantly is the understanding that the wealth of data flowing through this foundation is truly the game changer. Recognizing the importance of timing, content, and context of data flowing through and across the services layer will help a group define the most comprehensive set of requirements to support customers needs across multiple levels of the enterprise.

Once the SOA and BPM layers have been addressed, the appropriate business activity monitoring (BAM) may be overlaid for real time Business Intelligence insight and decision making at the process participant, manager, and  executive levels. The organization is now able to govern their business with accurate and timely information rather than just manage a series of workflow tasks.

On the organizational front, organizations would be wise to adopt more rapid, collaborative approaches to prototyping and more iterative approaches to technical delivery. Adopting an agile method, however, cannot be limited to just the development teams. New expectations must be set at all levels from operations up to senior management. Iterations must be expected, 70% solutions must be the new standard for iterative review, and managers and executives should require that a clearer vision be articulated from the lines of business and engineering in order to support and streamline the more fluid and flexible nature of this approach. Articulating, sharing and engaging stakeholders in the vision, from the development iterations through to post-implementation monitoring and management, is made all that much more effective utilizing “Enterprise 2.0” collaborative techniques.

Additionally, Software Development Lifecycles (SDLC) should be evaluated to ensure that the development processes have the right level of support. Operations, testing, and architectural teams should be assessed to uncover bottlenecks in information-sharing.  SDLC automation techniques like continuous integration that provide automated code management, testing, and environment setup and tear down should be the baseline – and more often than not delivered to the team via dynamic “cloud computing” mechanisms.

If organizations can get these technical and organizational approaches to BPM established, the chances of successfully transforming BPM from a management and workflow technique into a real time enterprise governance strategy are far greater. The benefits of this achievement are competitiveness, cost savings, flexibility, and insight into critical information that could be the defining factor in your organization’s success.

To learn more about Enterprise Business Process Management (BPM), Business Process Automation (BPA), Business Activity Monitoring (BAM), and Business Intelligence (BI) solutions implemented using Collaborative Governance Process Integration strategies – contact us at Blackstone Technology Group.

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Here’s a look into Blackstone Technology Group’s SOA engineering and architecture practice, and some interesting capabilities we’re deploying right now for Federal, State and Local Government and Public Service clients. Contact us here, or provide comments via any one of our social media channels.

An SOA infrastructure environment provides the foundation and plumbing for business services within the enterprise. Business service providers and consumers rely on the SOA infrastructure to provide an expected quality of service that is often difficult to verify before providers and consumers begin to leverage the infrastructure. Once problems arise, it may be difficult to determine the root cause of an issue especially when the SOA infrastructure and business services have different owners. In order to separate issues between the infrastructure and the services and hopefully prevent the blame game, comprehensive testing of the infrastructure must be performed to validate its capabilities and performance.

Without leveraging business services, an approach to testing an SOA infrastructure is to develop mock-scenarios that simulate real world use cases. To minimize complexity, each mock-scenario will often include just a subset of components within the SOA infrastructure and may not utilize all possible transport interfaces for a particular component. To provide full coverage of the infrastructure, a series of mock-scenarios will need to be developed with each scenario testing a particular area in the infrastructure. This approach gets the job done by ensuring that every component is tested, but will quickly show its limitations when scenarios need to be altered to perform root cause analysis, understand the diagnostics of an individual component within the infrastructure, or when new components are introduced.

For a current Federal Homeland Security Information-Sharing initiative, we’ve implemented a highly-efficient and data-driven framework to test an enterprise-scale, highly available SOA infrastructure environment. In the same amount of time that it took to previously build a single test scenario, we were able to develop the initial framework implementation that can quickly support multiple scenarios that include any permutation of components and transports.

Contact Blackstone Technology Group for more information regarding implementing Services-Oriented Architecture (SOA) solutions for your business or mission needs, and to learn more about our industry-leading SOA development and testing capabilities.

Hot opportunity in Blackstone Technology Group’s Washington DC Office, Federal Government Practice – Federal Technology Solutions Director

Position Description
As the Federal Technology Solutions director for Blackstone Technology Group, you will responsible for defining and building this Enterprise Application Integration and Information-Sharing Federal Practice.

You will serve as a thought leader and chief architect, building out service offerings focused on Application Integration, Services Oriented Architecture (SOA), Enterprise Services Bus (ESB) implementations, Enterprise Content Management (ECM), MDM, NIEM, Governance, etc. The ideal candidate will have a proven record of developing architectural solutions to facilitate intra and inter-government integration challenges using various frameworks. You will be responsible for managing client relationships, building and managing several accounts, managing partner relationships and selling new opportunities.

In addition being a key member of the Blackstone management team, you may also be directly involved in client engagements.

Qualified resources must have seven to ten years experience with large system implementation engagements as both a lead architect and program manager, covering the full life-cycle of program management, requirements, process design, implementation, testing, and change management. architectural solutions to facilitate intra and inter-government integration challenges using various frameworks.

Contact Blackstone Technology Group, or send resumes and referrals to MGREENBERG (at) BSTONETECH.COM .