The Need for New Modeling Tools for Business Users

In my last blog I argued that IBM and a few other enterprise software companies were in a unique position to provide high-end BPMS products (and Cognitive Computing platforms) because they had the skills to integrate a wide variety of complex technologies.  If an IT group plans to use a BPMS tool to design and the develop software for a large business prcoess application, that argument holds.

Having said that, however, I want to make the opposite argument as well.  When business people become engaged in analyzing their business needs and designing new business processes, they do not need a complex tool with the ability to integrate rules, business intelligence and analytics in complex ways. Business managers need tools that help them think simply and broadly about what the business is trying to do and to lay out a high-level process to meet their organization's needs.  Tools with all of the bells and whistles that a software designer would need are too complex for business managers to use.

Unfortunately, the consolidation within the BPM market has resulted in the acquisition of the first generation of simple business modeling tools — tools like Popkin, Proforma and Nimbus — and their incorporation into packages that are too complex for business managers.  Thus, even as consolidation has proceeded, the has been a steady release of new, simpler modeling tools.

In essence there are two BPM markets.  One for a powerful tool that process specialists and IT developers can use to create powerful, integrated processes with large software elements, and a second market for simple, well-designed process modeling that business people can use to describe and communicate their process designs.



  1. Hi Paul, you’ll have to excuse the shameless plug but in this case I think it’s entirely relevant! We have a lightweight process modelling tool designed for the business user. As well as keeping the approach simple we’ve designed the tool to be as fast as possible with a focus on supporting process workshops. A modeler can literally map at the speed of the conversation. As the user constructs a process model the tool asks the important questions such as what happens next, who does it and why. We also include some simple ‘analytics’ that provide insights into the process. A fully functional demo version can be downloaded from:


  2. 3M have been providing a simple modeling tool for decades.

  3. 3M has been providing a simple modeling tool for decades.

  4. Leila Lavina says

    Bizagi is both simple and easy to use.

Speak Your Mind


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.