Software AG injects
Software AG is introducing a strategic component to its approach to process modeling, from its acquisition of IDS Scheer, into a new business process management tool that lets enterprises compare and fine-tune processes across the enterprise.

The new offering from the Germany-based software vendor, Process Intelligence for WebMethods BPMS, includes business dashboards, historical process discovery, interactive analytics, process benchmarking and organizational analysis.

The term process intelligence was coined by the company itself to mean real-time data and analysis reaped from processes. It even published a book entitled Process Intelligence for Dummies, written by a handful of company executives on the topic.

“This process discovery capability is really unique to IDS Scheer,” said Susan Ganeshan, senior vice-president of product management and solutions marketing with Software AG. Software AG bought IDS Scheer in 2009; the transaction closed in 2010.

Prior to the purchase, Software AG’s involvement in a business process management project was limited to the execution of the process model with its WebMethods middleware from its acquisition of WebMethods in 2007. But the now-integrated platform with process methodology from IDS Scheer builds bridges between the traditionally siloed technology and business sides of an organization, “(therefore) enabling these two very different worlds to understand each other a little better,” said Ganeshan. “I think it can actually enable them to talk more, collaborate more, and influence each other’s worlds more directly.”

Specifically, the new offering allows process experts to compare at a detailed level processes across multiple manufacturing locations to understand possible discrepancies in metrics.

Organizations can also benchmark process performance against their own historic data or against that of other Software AG customers. The industry data, said Ganeshan, is aggregated across customer processes build atop WebMethods.

The business dashboards give an integrated view of those process comparisons, whether internal or external. And, the organizational analysis lets process experts foresight into the impact of a process change.

At Software AG’s annual ProcessWorld user conference last year, the company’s executive board member responsible for product strategy and development, Wolfram Jost, predicted a convergence of IT and business users in process creation and management.

“Enterprise architecture and business process analysis are coming closer and closer,” said Jost during the keynote. “My personal point of view is that in one year we will see that it is one.”

He also foresees services-oriented architecture, application integration and business process management converging within the enterprise.

Last November, Software AG said customers could next expect the platform to be enabled for additional capabilities including the cloud, mobility and social collaboration. The company also plans to deliver complex event management and master data management offerings integrated in the project stack as well as standalone.

The company announced plans to acquire master data management vendor Data Foundations last October.  

Follow Kathleen Lau on Twitter: @KathleenLau

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