I came across this PDF file from the Ptech DATA DUMP
from archive.org Wayback machine (July 1998):http://web.archive.bibalex.org/web/20000823031901/www.ptechinc.com/delphi.pdf
Building a Business Process Framework Ptech's FrameWork
From Vision to Reality
Imagine the following scenario:
The CEO of a major financial institution is presenting his plan for re-engineering an enterprise process to the board of directors. As he flips through PowerPoint slides depicting diagrams of the proposed process the participants in the meeting are each scribbling away on their note pads. The line-of-business manager is making lists of people who will be affected along with notes about the rules that will govern the interactions of the new teams. The Director of IT is drawing a schematic of the infrastructure and applications that will need to be in place. The business consultant is drawing a process map, and the director of IT is listing existing and future applications that will be the foundation for deploying this grand vision. Each of our hypothetical participants has his or her own vision of the CEO’s grand scheme. Are they aligned? Will they work in concert? Has the CEO adequately articulated his vision? Has he thought through all of its implications? And if the answer to all of these questions is yes, then how long will it take to realize the vision? Will competition, the market, customers wait idly until its fruition?
What if the CEO was able to draw on a library of process objects to illustrate his vision? The objects would represent the collective knowledge of the enterprise’s business strategies, architecture, and systems. Best of all, the objects could be stitched together as easily as the circles and boxes of a PowerPoint presentation, but they would contain the knowledge of the rules, constraints, and relationships of each object. The finished diagram could be checked for validation, passed on to the CIO who would map the companies IT architecture, then embellished by the line-ofbusiness manager with a finer level of detail which involves the roles of individuals and detailed processes. Finally the IT director could work with his staff to attach the various applications objects to the architecture. And after the vision was deployed it could easily be reconfigured to map to changing market dynamics.
Far fetched? An unlikely prospect? Not if you are using a new genre of technology from Ptech for knowledge-based process modeling and automation. Ptech’s FrameWork uses an object-based business process modeling approach to allow organizations to construct elaborate models of their processes from vision to deployment. The key benefits of this approach are straightforward:
• Minimize distortion of business strategy from vision to implementation
• Speed deployment of business strategy
• Maximize the agility and integrity of ongoing business process change
These three benefits all speak to the principle problem faced by companies in today’s highly volatile markets — speeding the time required to get from “Concept to Code.” (Think of concept as the articulation of a strategy and code as the implementation of that strategy.) Companies can no longer afford the application backlog that has typified IT for so long. New concepts and strategies must be deployed quickly if they are to be useful. In order to keep pace with shortening market and product cycles, and at the same time preserve the luxury of strategic thinking, business processes must be deployed in months, weeks, even days.
The Challenge of Process Modeling
The current state of affairs in most organizations, however, is that strategy and business process definition flows from the top down while systems and applications development flows from the bottom up. The dichotomy creates a collision of vision between the business and the systems of an enterprise. The turbulence generated by this weather front disrupts the integrity of business strategy, impedes the ability of a company to respond to its markets and customers, and stifles the collaboration that is necessary to insure alignment between three dimensions of every process: the prescribed, physical, and practical.
Unfortunately, often organizations rely on different communities, tools, and practices to support each of these three process dimensions. The result is miscommunication and a basic lack of cohesion between the three.
Delphi’s Model for designing, deploying, and modifying a business process involves the following three distinct process dimensions:
• Prescribed (Process) Layer - Organization: this is the way an organization defines a process and assumes it should work. Most often this is based on definition from outdated sources or peripheral parties (such as managers and executives).
• Physical Layer - Infrastructure: this is the way the organization’s information systems (electronic and otherwise) support any given process or set of processes. Most often this was created in pieces and is not a cohesive solution.
• Practical (Logical) Layer - People: this is the way people naturally work together, and often how they work around obstacles and impediments of the other two layers. It is more spontaneous and rarely documented — for both fear of retribution and job security.This is illustrated in the graphic below:
The Three Layers of an Organization
Figure 1: The organization typically exists in three
layers: the prescribed layer is an archaic remnant
of the way control was originally meant to occur;
the physical layer is the technology installed to
expedite processes; and the practical layer is the
way in which the process is actually done. The
agility and integrity of a business process architecture
stems from a combination of all three layers in
a single unified framework.
Bringing these three process dimensions into alignment is the key to creating organizational agility. If a single framework could be used to
accomplish this, then the enterprise truly can be said to have a process architecture and collaborative process knowledge.
Ptech accomplishes this by providing a tool set that offers a consistent framework across the entire enterprise for architecting a business process - from its concept to its deployment.
The visual tools provided in Ptech’s FrameWork allow process engineers to clearly define and depict business process. However, they also support the full spectrum of process design, providing a single toolset for translating organizational mission into vision, vision to goals, goals to objectives, and ultimately objectives into the tactical applications and their programming code. This creates seamless integrity of a business process throughout an enterprise.
A visual language, which can be shared throughout the enterprise, also has the added benefit of providing a tool for publishing an organization’s process knowledge capital. This is an essential facility for creating an awareness of an organization’s processes by depicting them in easily understood form. Again this is not simply a matter of drawing a diagram of the process but more importantly being able to auto-generate the diagram from a live process. In the case of Ptech that depiction can even be delivered in HTML form over the web for true enterprise-wide delivery.
The power of this approach is further leveraged by the fact that Ptech’s architecture supports the use of any process definition language. Whatever the conventions or semantics of the organizational visioning, process definition, and even the programming language, Ptech can map to and incorporate this nomenclature to its process conventions.
Ultimately, the Ptech approach allows organizations to “build the builders” of process – rather than hardwire process solutions which may only appeal to one community, a single line of business model, or the methodology de jure. The result is an amazingly flexible process environment that constantly fits the methods, practices, and semantics of the enterprise.Figure 2: Ptech provides a complete framework for
defining the enterprise strategy, business architecture,
BPR, and process in the semantics of, and with the
methods most appropriate for the organization.
The Process Control Room - Heart and Soul of the Enterprise
An essential ingredient of Ptech’s approach is what is referred to as the process control room. Control rooms, such as those used in a nuclear power plant to monitor vital functions, provide the ability to instantly alter and reconfigure the myriad functions of the power plant in order to address a potential problem before it becomes a crisis. In a business setting a control room serves an added function, helping to instantly reconfigure an enterprise to take advantage of opportunities. The control room model also radically alters the approach an organization takes to reengineering, from a crisis-driven model to an opportunity based model.
Many re-engineering efforts are undertaken in response to a crisis. But if we wait for results to indicate the effectiveness of a process change, we will be perpetually behind the response curve or responding outside the optimal time frame for the
action to have any effect on the problem or the opportunity. Companies who do not have the ability to reconfigure themselves rapidly are consistently outpaced by both the market and their competitors.
The alternative is a process control room, which can be used to quickly translate new market strategy into action. Process modeling tools, such
as FrameWork, allow astute organizations to couple their knowledge base with the variability
of a chaotic market environment.
Yet for all of this there are many naysayers who refuse to believe that process modeling and enterprise architectures are possible to build.
Some say that there are just too many variables involved in most chaotic business scenarios, which makes them impossible to model. Just the opposite is true. Organizations follow definite rules and patterns - and these become much more obvious as an organization's internal awareness and responsiveness increase through the use of business modeling tools.
Rather than reengineering to fix inefficient processes, reengineering becomes part of the entire initiative to prevent processes from becoming inefficient in the first place. Instead of a one-time, top-down process design effort, reengineering becomes a continuous approach for all in the organization.
The people who know the most about a process are the ones who work on it and redesign it as needed. Supported by a new set of technological tools for modeling, people are able to modify the rules of the work that they perform. A strategy that governs the guidelines and constraints under which the work can be designed back this up. The result is a constant state-of-the-art process.
Unfortunately, nothing can replace the insights and information you obtain by getting deep into the trenches with end-users. Ultimately, the true measure of a good analysis tool is the degree of intimacy it creates with the process and end-users. The approach used by Ptech to bridge the chasm from concept to code provides this.
Perhaps most importantly, the tool should be free of product or methodology bias. In other words, the analytical tool should be a neutral ground for the free exchange of ideas between the information systems professional and the end-user.
While some process modeling toolsets may provide, in the best case, a complete scenario out of the box,
Ptech provides the option of a complete scenario or a complete customized scenario. Given the variety of people, tools, methods and processes in the modern enterprise, it is inconceivable to imagine using any other approach to map and modify an organization’s process assets. This is clearly a benchmark for any competitive organization.
©1998 The Delphi Group, 100 City Hall Plaza, Boston, MA 02108-2106 • (617) xxxxxxxx, www.delphigroup.com
. All rights reserved.
This is a current (2010) partners list of the Delphi Group:
Delphi Group's Decision Point Consulting clients are comprised of Global 2000 enterprises from virtually every major industry category. The following is a partial, representative list.
* American Express
* Apple Computer
* Bausch & Lomb
* Blue Cross Blue Shield
* Chase Manhattan Bank
* City of Boston
* The Clorox Company
* CoreStates Bank
* Elf Autochem
* Internal Revenue Service
* Kellogg Company
* Lawyers Title Insurance Corp.
* Lehman Brothers
* Lockheed Martin
* Lone Star Gas
* Mayo Foundation
* Met Life
* National Life Insurance of Vermont
* New York Stock Exchange
* Oak Ridge National Laboratories
* Owens Corning
* R.W. Johnson Pharmaceutical
* SC Johnson Wax
* State of Washington
* The Prudential Insurance Company
* Transport Canada
* Union Pacific Railroad
* West Valley Nuclear
About Delphi Group.
For more than 20 years Delphi has been providing unparalled insight at the intersection of business and technology.
We are "Strategic Business Advisors and Technology Market Makers" focusing on the intersection of business and technology - what we call biztech. No other advisor provides Delphi Group's depth of understanding in our areas of coverage. We dedicate our company to the evolution of these markets and build successful communities of providers and end-users around them.
Today you have the resources to come up to speed on any technology in a matter of minutes. What you need is depth, community, and objectivity. That's what Delphi Group delivers. The factors to our success lie in creating a resource for your organization that offers the greatest depth in understanding key technology markets, access to the largest community of buyers and suppliers of these technologies, unimpeachable objectivity and an intense commitment to developing a team with some of the brightest and most committed people in the industry.
Our values are the core of our success and the success of our clients.
1) Build client relationships based on integrity and supported by a written guarantee of objectivity and best price/value for all of our services
2) Consistently exceed expectations in all of our services
3) Accurately portray a balanced analysis of the markets and technologies we track
4) Never underestimate the power of human capital and the important context it must provide for technology decisions
5) Dedicate ourselves to the success of our clients
Founder of Delphi Group's personal websitehttp://www.tomkoulopoulos.com/
PLEASE READ THIS disturbing 2002 Delphi Group White Paper entitledTHE ADVENT OF THE GLOBAL GRIDhttp://www.delphigroup.com/whitepapers/pdf/WP_2002_GlobalGrid_Locked.pdf
Here's another 2002 White paper by Delphi Group, it's entitled:Web Services at the Desktop - A NEW WORLD ORDERhttp://www.delphigroup.com/whitepapers/pdf/2002-magna-carta.pdfTake a look at the groups participating in an Enterprise Summit mentioned in this "New World Order" report
Applied Knowledge Group
Brobeck, Phleger & Harrison, LLP
Coors Brewing Company
Ford Motor Company
H Lundbeck A/S
Hale and Dorr
Infonet Services Corporation
Innovative Emergency Management
Journal of The Hyperlinked Organization
Research in Motion
Social Security Administration
The World Bank
United States Postal Service
US Pacific Fleet
USGS Center for Biological Informatics (USGS)