Integrated Business Process Designs and Current Applications of Workflow Systems in E-Business

Integrated Business Process Designs and Current Applications of Workflow Systems in E-Business

Mabel T. Kung (California State University at Fullerton, USA) and Jenny Yi Zhang (California State University at Fullerton, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-61520-611-7.ch092
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Abstract

To enable effective cross-departmental automations and global transactions, business processes modeling offer external views on their infrastructure processes to all partners in the enterprise, such as product data, quality, costs and delivery requirements, quantity quotations, process plan efficiency, and interactions for meta-, macro-, and micro- distributed process planning (Livari & Livari, 2006; McKendrick, 2006; Siller, Estruch, Vila, Abellan, & Romero, 2008; Kuechler & Vaishnzvi, 2008). Business process modeling is significant as EBusiness and enterprise integration drive the need to deploy activities online (Tagg, 2001; Aissi, Malu, & Srinivasan, 2002; Weiss & Amyot, 2005; Sewing, Rosemann & Dumas, 2006; Chen, Zhang & Zhou, 2007). These management systems employ integrated productivity tools, specialized technical support systems, such as CAD systems, graphic packages, enterprise-wide integrated software applications, for example, ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning), CRM (Customer Relationship Management), mail and other communication systems. When the applications become more modulated and service oriented, stand-alone software will no longer be sufficient (Cimatti, Clarke, Giunchiglia & Roveri, 2000; Adner & Helfat, 2003; Andreescu, 2006).
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Introduction

To enable effective cross-departmental automations and global transactions, business processes modeling offer external views on their infrastructure processes to all partners in the enterprise, such as product data, quality, costs and delivery requirements, quantity quotations, process plan efficiency, and interactions for meta-, macro-, and micro- distributed process planning (Livari & Livari, 2006; McKendrick, 2006; Siller, Estruch, Vila, Abellan, & Romero, 2008; Kuechler & Vaishnzvi, 2008).

Business process modeling is significant as E-Business and enterprise integration drive the need to deploy activities online (Tagg, 2001; Aissi, Malu, & Srinivasan, 2002; Weiss & Amyot, 2005; Sewing, Rosemann & Dumas, 2006; Chen, Zhang & Zhou, 2007). These management systems employ integrated productivity tools, specialized technical support systems, such as CAD systems, graphic packages, enterprise-wide integrated software applications, for example, ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning), CRM (Customer Relationship Management), mail and other communication systems. When the applications become more modulated and service oriented, stand-alone software will no longer be sufficient (Cimatti, Clarke, Giunchiglia & Roveri, 2000; Adner & Helfat, 2003; Andreescu, 2006).

The most common application for process modeling, control and management is Workflow Management Systems (WfMSs) (van der Aalst, Desel, & Oberwies, 2000; van der Aalst & van Hee, 2002; van der Aalst & Jablonski, 2000; Fischer, 2001; van der Aalst & van Dongen, 2002; Grigori, Casati, Dayal, & Shan, 2001; Herbst & Karagiannis, 2000; Cook & Wolf, 1999). Commercial WfMSs such as Staffware, IBM MQSeries, and COSA offer generic modeling and enactment capabilities. Besides stand-alone systems, WfMSs are becoming integral components of many enterprise-wide information systems (Leymann & Roller, 2000), for example, Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems such as SAP, PeopleSoft, Baan and Oracle, Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software, Supply Chain Management (SCM) systems, Business to Business (B2B) applications embed workflow technology. These large scale systems enable collaborative customized computing using general-purpose scripting languages and platforms with tool-automation features (McPhillips, Bowers, Zinn, & Ludascher, 2008; Glatard, Montagnat, Emsellem & Lingrand, 2008).

Key Terms in this Chapter

E-Business: The use of the Internet and other information technologies to support commerce and improve business performance.

Enterprise System: A system that supports enterprise-wide or cross-functional requirements, rather than a single department or group within the organization.

Inter-Organizational Process Control: Intra-organizational WfMSs are implemented to support the modeling, analysis, and performance among different organizations.

Intra-Organizational Process Control: Intra-organizational WfMSs are implemented to support the modeling, analysis, and performance of routine business processes.

Workflow: A workflow is a sequence of operations, declared as work of a person, work of a simple or complex mechanism, work of group of persons, work of an organization of staff, or machines.

Workflow Management Systems (WfMSs): A system of overseeing the process of passing information, documents, and tasks from one employee or machine within a business to another.

Process Control: A statistics and engineering discipline that deals with architectures, mechanisms, and algorithms for controlling the output of a specific process.

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