BPM and its 3 Letter Cousins – Perficient Business Process Excellence Blog
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BPM and its 3 Letter Cousins

Just as business organizations are being swept over by the grandiose of Business Process Management (BPM), its lesser or equal known cousins have tagged along to share the limelight. They make appearances in BPM discussions and ring a ‘whazzat!?’ in the minds behind the twitching eyebrow.

Allow me to introduce the 3 letter cousins of BPM that would eliminate the ‘whazzat’ in case you were at the receiving end of an onslaught of acronyms. This will also help one see some of the complexity in determining what BPM really is.

Arranged alphabetically, not in the order of significance, here’s the list:

ACM: Adaptive Case Management, a newer entrant in the scene, enables non-technical business users to seamlessly create/consolidate processes from business entities, content, social interactions and business rules.

BPI: Business Process Management is one approach to solve the larger challenge tied to Business Process Improvement BPI.

BAM: Business Activity Monitoring, the concept of providing real-time access to critical business performance indicators, to improve speed and effectiveness of business operations.

BPA: Business Process Analysis, the activity of reviewing existing business processes and practices for optimization and improvement.

BPEL: Business Process Execution Language, unable to shed its fourth letter, though an important cousin, is the standard executable language for specifying actions within business processes with web services.

BPMN:  Business Process Modeling Notation, a 4 letter cousin, provides business with the capability of understanding business processes in a graphical notation.

BPN: Business Process Network is primarily a process-specific instance of multi enterprise integration between multiple entities. BPNs are operated by business process hubs which combine multi-enterprise integration and multi-enterprise applications.

BPO: Business Process Optimization, involves optimizing process flows to improve process execution, aiming to change a business process to reach a higher quality of service level on a specific service infrastructure.

BRE: Business Rules Engine, the core of decision-centric organizations, moves the focus away from processes to automated decisions system. It provides the ability to register, define, classify and manage business rules.

BRM: Business Rules Management, an off shoot of operational decision management, enables organizational policies and repeatable decisions associated with those policies. These policies are defined, deployed, monitored and maintained separately from application code.

CEP: Complex Event Processing, aggregates information from distributed systems in real time and applies rules to recognize patterns and trends that would otherwise go unnoticed. It gives companies the ability to identify and anticipate opportunities represented by seemingly unrelated events.

EAI: Enterprise Architecture Integration, a business need to make diverse applications in an enterprise including partner systems to communicate to each other to achieve a business objective, irrespective of platform and geographical location.

ECM: Enterprise Content Management, a formalized means of organizing and storing an organization’s documents and other content that relate to the organization’s processes. It includes strategies, methods and tools used throughout the lifecycle of the content.

EDA: Event Driven Architecture, a term promoted by Gartner, is a style of software architecture based on real time flows of events allowing for multiple, less predictable, asynchronous events to happen in parallel and trigger a single action.

ICE: Integrated composition environments, these are tool sets of application infrastructure technologies which support creation of business compositions – BPMS suites are a prime examples of an ICE.

KPI:  Key Performance Indicators, a set of quantifiable measures that businesses use to gauge or compare performance in terms of meeting strategic goals.

MOM: Message Oriented Middleware, a connectivity middleware that provides program-to-program communications by message passing. It provides high performance foundation for application interoperability in diverse and complex environments.

PPA: Process Performance Analysis, a methodology to asses processes using performance measures and determine sources of variation, process potential and improvement opportunity.

SOA: Services Oriented Architecture, the approach to have software resources in an enterprise available and discoverable on network as well as well-defined devices.

Are there anymore?


One thought on “BPM and its 3 Letter Cousins

  1. BPMS: Business Process Management System, a BPM system with built in data management system.

    TAT: Turn around time, is the time it takes from ordering a task to completion of the task.

    ESB: Enterprise Service Bus, is a system for common integration points.

    SCA: Service Component Architecture, an architecture pattern for integration, commonly used in ESB


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