Process-Oriented Assessment of Web Services

Process-Oriented Assessment of Web Services

Jan-Hendrik Sewing (Siemens Management Consulting, Germany) and Michael Rosemann (Queensland University of Technology, Australia)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-086-8.ch014
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Though Web services offer unique opportunities for the design of new business processes, the assessment of the potential impact of Web services is often reduced to technical aspects. This paper proposes a four-phase methodology which facilitates the evaluation of the potential use of Web services in e-business systems both from a technical and from a strategic viewpoint. It is based on business process models, which are used to frame the adoption of Web services and to assess their impact on existing business processes. The application of this methodology is described using a procurement scenario.
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Research Approach

The proposed assessment methodology is grounded in related literature and complemented by focus group discussions with early and prospective Web services adopters. The purpose of the focus groups was to explore the current practice of Web service implementations, and industry’s perception and approaches on how to address the challenge of business alignment. Specifically, two focus groups were organised: one for discussing the uptake and adoption of Web services technologies and a second one for discussing the use of business process models for assessing Web services adoption opportunities.

The participants of the focus groups were selected on the basis of their experience with Web services or their affiliation to organisations that were considering the deployment of Web services. The choice of participants was also guided by the objective of covering different organisations and industry sectors, and striking a balance between participants with a technical and a management background. Overall, the focus groups included 15 participants from eight organisations and covering four different groups (IT users, vendors, consulting firms, and research).

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