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Business Transformation in Action

Joe McKendrick

BPM and SOA Roundup: Cloudy BPM, Social Business, Single-Purpose Apps

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Does Software as a Service and business process management belong together? That's the question asked by ebizQ contributor Alan Earls. Alan reports that leading analysts are positive about the concept of SaaS-delivered BPM -- but cautious: Consider what Forrester Research's Clay Richardson had to say: He still sees a lot of concern about risk and perceived risk, adding that most of the SaaS BPM activity he has seen is "try before you buy"--that is, situations in which companies are leveraging SaaS as a set of training wheels. "After that testing period, most companies still seem to want to bring BPM in house," he says.

Speaking of BPM in the clouds, Michael Dortch also had some substantive things to say on the topic in his latest post, especially as it relates to intellectual property concerns and Apple's new iCloud offering. "Even if iCloud use in business rises no further than the penetration of Macintosh computers in most offices, iCloud will likely raise both use and perception of cloud-based services designed to help businesspeople to share information. Including documents. Including sometimes sensitive documents. Such as those that contain critical intellectual property. Including but definitely not limited to business processes. So what's a process-minded, security-conscious businessperson to do?".

The ebizQ site has also been packed with commentary on evolving business needs. Dion Hinchcliffe discusses what CIOs and IT managers need to know about emerging social businesses. "The CIO of today tends to be one more focused on the business and less on technology than in years past. Whether they're an activist CIO pushing for change or more concerned about the status quo, the consensus at the moment is that the role is first and foremost grounded in the business."

Scott Menter says it's time to "drive a stake through the heart of single-purpose apps."  He says too many applications have their own workflow, training requirements, servers, vendor overhead, databases, extension languages. "BPM opens the possibility of leveraging a single app to solve dozens of business challenges. Imagine, if you will, replacing all those single-purpose tools with one flexible platform. From one vendor. Requiring one skillset. Enticing, is it not?"


In this blog (formerly known as "SOA in Action"), Joe McKendrick examines how BPM and related business and IT approaches can promote business transformation.

Joe McKendrick

Joe McKendrick is an author and independent analyst who tracks the impact of information technology on management and markets. View more


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