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Anne Stuart’s BPM in Action

Dennis Byron

Is the BPM Buzzword Tsunami Receding?

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One June 3, ebizQ reported that the Open Group will hold its 23rd Enterprise Architecture Practitioners Conference (EAPC) and its 3rd Security Practitioners Conference (SPC) in Toronto, July 20-24, 2009. The notice and accompanying agenda surprised me in two ways:

  • In terms of the notice, I didn't know the Open Group was still around. It's the remnant of the old X/Open and Open Software Foundation (OSF). The connection of those two groups with the UNIX wars during the 1980s and early 1990s kind of made the "open" moniker a hard sell. But X/Open in particular did some great work coordinating UNIX development with de jure standards efforts, and bringing UNIX into the mainstream of transaction processing. I have been surprised that no one seems to perform a similar role for Linux. Perhaps the vendor community felt it was burned by those long-ago Unix battles and did not want to even remind you about them.

  • In terms of the agenda, I was surprised that the words business process management (BPM) were not used in the context of the Enterprise Architecture subject matter. Maybe the BPM buzzword tsunami that has gone on during 2008 and 2009 is receding. That is the fate of all buzzword tsunamis of course. And as the buzzword blast recedes, it usually means that information technology (IT) professionals are getting down to the real work. Late in 2008 and through the first half of 2009, it seemed that no conference could be held or press release issued by anyone in IT without mentioning BPM. In particular there was a lot of melding of the terms BPM and enterprise architecture management (EAM), as I described here on IT Business Edge.

Although there is a link between EAM and BPM, melding the two muddies the water. Maybe we'll take a ride up to Toronto in July (when Cape Cod gets overrun with summer visitors) and see some of the clear waters of the Great Lakes and Niagara Falls.

-- Dennis Byron

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Business process management and optimization -- philosophies, policies, practices, and punditry.

Anne Stuart

I am the editor of ebizQ.

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