Last week Oracle) announced a major upgrade to its enterprise content management suite. This week it has announced it is upgrading its Business Process Management suite.

As a part of Oracle’s (newssite) Fusion Middleware 11g, the new BPM Suite 11g gives users the benefits of social computing built around unified process management capabilities that enable users across the enterprise to access and collaborate on tasks through simplified business process management.

And it is the simplified element that Oracle is really pushing. The new BPM suite, the company says, combines Business Process Execution Language (BPEL) and Business Process Modeling Notation (BPMN) 2.0.

With complete lifecycle modeling, managing and simulating, it is capable of building business processes across the enterprise as well as across computer systems and applications.

By integrating Enterprise 2.0 capabilities into those processes, BPM 11g also enables advanced collaboration over the course of the process lifecycle.

Unified Process Foundation

At the base of it all is the unified process foundation. The unified process foundation makes the development, deployment, monitoring and implementation of new processes easy.

The core need of every business process management system is to integrate all the different systems across the enterprise that contribute to the completion of enterprise tasks.

Oracle says that its new system is better integrated and unified than most other products on the market as the result of a unified process engine that controls the integration of enterprise systems and simplifies their implementation.

It executes BPEL and BPMN 2.0 processes as well as implementing workflow rules and is integrated with Oracle SOA Suite and its Business Intelligence Suite. Features also include:

  • Unified rules, and workflow engine
  • Fusion Middleware and Microsoft Office integration
  • Integration of Oracle BI scorecards, process metrics and strategy maps
  • Full process monitoring
  • Out-of-the-box application adapters

BPM 11g And Social Media

The social computing capabilities are also new and come with wiki and blog capabilities for better collaboration. While the new features are not game-changing, they do add an important element to the BPM that enables its deployment and use across disparate enterprise locations. Features here include:

  • Process spaces for all processes, and modelling
  • Mashups, wikis and blogs
  • Unplanned user interaction-enabled through unstructured processes
  • Process guidelines for milestone-based view
  • User-friendly dashboards

User-Centered Business Processes

BPM 11g also comes with user-centric design to cover the needs of all users across the enterprise with who have different roles in the process development and deployment and, as a result, have different needs.

For these, Oracle has BPM Studio and Process Composer, a role-based client and web-based modelling tool that follows a ‘what-you-see-is-what-you-execute’ model that eliminates synchronization between process design and run-time. Features here include:

  • Process customization using web-based modelling
  • Client modelling in BPM Studio
  • Easy process deployment using wizards
  • Unified development for process, web and portal

With BPM Suite 11g, Oracle aimed to simply the management of core business processes and their lifecycle by providing a collaborative environment, as well as effective tools for managing and monitoring those business processes. Time will tell if they got it right.