CEP applied to BPM (for dynamic BPM)

The first Gartner Event Processing conference in Orlando, FL in September came directly after the Gartner BPM conference. Many BPM attendees decided to stick around to see if CEP had any relevance to their world. As it turns out, there was more relevance than they were anticipating.

Everyone realizes that today’s working environment is very dynamic with email, instant messaging, informal meetings popping up in the hallway, wireless communication at all hours of the day and night, etc. You can not pre-determine (in a nice static pre-formatted model) everything that is going to happen in sequence. The era of traditional BPM is being challenged by the capabilities of today’s emerging technologies.

Of course, you still need BPM as a core part of running your company, but in addition being able to adapt your BPM processes to this dynamic environment is what is going to give you an edge over your competition.

Enter the combining of CEP and BPM to make dynamic BPM.

What CEP + BPM gives us is the best of both worlds. Being able to model our business as best we can in advance, but also adding the flexibility to change that model in realtime to take advantage of opportunities or catch problems before they happen.

The way it works is as your company is running, the universe of ‘events’ are being correlated by your CEP engine. As ‘patterns’ emerge that display a potential opportunity or threat, the CEP engine applies rules to alert and modify the BPM processes appropriately to take advantage of the pattern that was identified. The CEP systems are now moving toward a concept of ‘Self Healing’ or ‘Self Optimizing’ of your running environment. You can let the CEP system automate as much as you want or simply do the alerting piece to your administrator with recommendations on what to change in your Business Processes.

As these two become more integrated, the concept of ‘The Predictive Enterprise’ starts to become more of a reality.

At TIBCO we call this combination of CEP and BPM “TIBCO iProcess Conductor”, which is already proving its worth (especially in the demanding telecom market).