Business process modeling spec set for 2010 adoption

Vendors like IBM and Oracle are backing version 2.0 of the OMG technology

The OMG (Object Management Group) expects to have a final version of the BPMN (Business Process Modeling Notation) 2.0  specification, featuring capabilities such as collaborative process modeling, adopted in mid-2010, OMG said on Friday.

Approved in a beta format in September, BPMN 2.0  also includes choreography and a common file format to ensure interoperability between BPMN tools in a multi-vendor environment. The file format also fosters alignment between business and IT.

The first version of BPMN provided a graphical notation for specifying and documenting business processes, emphasizing orchestration processes. BPMN 1.x resulted in more than 60 implementations of the specification. But version 1.x did not define an interchange format for exchanging models in a standard way between different tools, and it did not feature a native executable format.

"BPMN is one of the most widely adopted modeling standards for business analysis," said Richard Mark Soley, OMG chairman and CEO, in a statement released by the organization. "It addresses the entire range of business modeling from people to systems to analytics and intelligence. As stewards of this important and popular specification, it is important for us to respond to changing market requirements and advancing technology by maintaining BPMN and keeping it current as user and vendor needs evolve."

BPMN 2.0-supportive tools are expected next year. Supporters of BPMN 2.0 include companies such as IBM, Oracle, Red Hat, SAP, and Tibco.

"BPMN 2.0 will accelerate the adoption of business process management tools and methodologies, which will in turn drive even more value from continuous process optimization techniques used within enterprises," said Karla Norsworthy, vice president of standards at IBM, in OMG's statement.  "IBM is providing initial support for BPMN 2.0 in WebSphere Business Modeler 7.0."

Lacking from the list of supporters on OMG's statement was Microsoft, which joined OMG last year.  An OMG representative said she could not say whether or not the company supported BPMN 2.0.  Microsoft could not be reached for comment on Friday afternoon.

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