Forschungsprojekt ECOMOD

Referenzgeschäftsprozesse und Strategien im E-Commerce

Forschungsgruppe Unternehmensmodellierung
  Mapping Business Processes to WorkflowsDiese Seite auf Deutsch  


Business Process Modelling
Workflow Modelling
Conceptual Mapping
Implementation Issues

Introduction: Business Process Modelling vs. Workflow Management
Business process modelling (BPM) and Workflow Management (WfM) are two popular subjects in the area of information systems research (IS research, 'Wirtschaftsinformatik'). At first sight, they seem very similar: BPM and WfM foster a mainly  process-oriented perspective on organisations. The process-oriented view comprises activities and their relationships within and to an organisation's context. Relationships among business processes might be specified using control flow (consecutive, parallel, or alternative execution), hierarchical decomposition and/or generic relationships. Relationships to the organisational context comprise the assignment of organisational units (company, department, role) and resources (tools, machinery). However, the different view points taken by BPM and WfM, respectively, have lead to conceptual differences, which require thorough analysis before a mapping of both approaches can take place. They represent  different levels of abstraction on process-oriented organisations. The following table displays typical differences found in the literature:
Business Process ModellingWorkflow Management
  • Includes manual activities/processes [FrLa03]
  • "Conceptual level" of the enterprise (e.g. [Böhm00])
  • Business processes can be related to every kind of resource (i.e. not only IT) [Jung01]
  • Focusses on processing of digital business/office documents [FrLa03]
  • Manual processes or decision making processes are not considered [FrLa03]
  • Emphasises use of information technology [Böhm00, p. 3]
  • Workflows are business processes combined with IT [Sta97]
Overview of Contents
Contents of this Web page describe an approach for mapping concepts of a given business process modelling language to workflow schemata. (These contents have also been published as research report No. 47.)
  • We describe the mapping approach in general including modelling languages, standards and tools that were applied in this context.

  • We outline conceptual foundations, equivalences, and differences of  business process modelling (MEMO-OrgML)  and workflow modelling (XPDL).

  • In order to support mapping of business processes to workflow schemata we especially focus on information which has to be added to business processes in order to map them to workflows.

  • The section on implementation issues gives further insights into the configurations of the tools that are applied in order to achieve the mapping as well as generation of software based on workflow specifications.

  • The literature references used on this Web page are listed on the  References- page

View a complete example.